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I Want To Travel, But
I'm Afraid It'll Ruin My Future

16 May 2016 | Mri Grout - A Lifelong Vagabond

I hear this a lot, especially from people aged 17 – 25 who are now fully expected to enter the 'real world' of bills, work, and a monetary definition of success. They dream of falling in love with a foreign accent, of petting the wild kangaroos of Pebbly Beach, of learning to fly and sail to all ends of the earth or maybe just a corner, but as they are repeatedly told they must apply for universities and well-paying positions, their dreams slowly die – only to resurface as regret years on down the line.

However, it doesn't have to be that way. You're young with your whole life ahead of you and travelling for a gap year does not ruin your future. If anything, it betters it.

1. You Can Apply For Working Holiday Visas

picking apples during a working holiday visa in Australia
If you fit the criteria (which is pretty much under 26 or 30 and from a certain country), then you can easily be qualified to work in numerous countries around the globe. You don't need a job already lined up. You don't have to work in a specific area. You aren't required to leave if you're not working. You can literally do any job a native can and most importantly, you don't need to (normally) prove finances, although I would still recommend having enough to cover a month's cost of living while you look for work. ​

TIP: Australia and New Zealand are two wonderful countries to pick first as their minimum wage is around $16/hr. Easy savings, anyone?

2. You'll Discover What Your Dream Job Is

Vermont State House
There's an entire part of you that you don't know anything about (yes, even for us introverts) – a part that only comes out when you are completely free to be yourself like you are when you're on the road. Because you're going to be gone tomorrow and never see these people again, you're not worried about making a fool of yourself or getting someone's approval (or not); you're free to be 100% you. And in this time of discovery, you'll have a better chance of figuring out what you actually want to do in life and thus, you'll be able make a better decision when picking a major or business to commit to.

3. You'll Become Wiser

What you learned in your home town or country is just the tip of all the knowledge out there. Travelling the world introduces you to a great deal of the rest of it and not just in historical, geographical, economical or political areas. You also learn to see things, even ancient thoughts and traditions, from other angles and viewpoints that you never knew existed. And when you are aware of more opinions, more facts, and more options, then your horizons will grow way past what the eye can see, benefiting you in everyday life as well as the workforce.

4. You'll Nail That Job Interview

supreme confidence on a mooseTravelling is a fantastic way to learn true self-confidence. You're on your own, in another area, country, or continent entirely when you get lost. Maybe you can speak the local language, maybe not, but either way you'll have to find your way out on your own and the sun is now starting to set. A typical situation we travellers find ourselves in from time to time and a wonderful situation to learn that you can in fact, truly take care of yourself.​

And you'll carry that knowledge of 'I really can do it' into the interview – a show of self-confidence and leadership ability that's always attractive to a hiring person.

5. You'll Have an Exceptional CV/Resume

How many other people your age can claim that they've travelled to a foreign place with success? That they didn't just break down without mom and dad and head back home to safety?​

How many other job applicants can claim that they've truly broadened their horizons and can bring unique thinking to the field? That they are 100% sure that they won't just quit when the work gets busy and stressful since they've already been there and done that?

So What's Stopping You From Traveling Now?

You're at that golden age of opportunity and discovery and the whole world is yours to explore. The jungles of the Amazon, the Big Things of Australia, the wild pigs of Nassau – it's all out there just waiting.​

See you on the road.

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