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Should I travel or should I study?

Should I travel or should I study?

The world opens up pretty quickly. 

Going from years of rigorous schedules and same-old school, adult life hits you pretty hard when it all wraps up. Suddenly weekdays become free, there’s no need to worry about school nights and the workload alters. Also, more choices come your way while you’re basking in your newfound freedom.

One key question is if and when you want to take off and travel the world. For a holiday or for a journey. For a gap year or for a tourist sightseeing expedition. Normally determined by your post-school schedule and bank account, the decision creeps into a lot of people’s minds. So what should you consider when it comes to making this decision?

If you do want to travel, when is the best time to travel?

You can’t just pack up your bags and go. You need an itinerary, plane tickets, accommodation. To do this, you need to work out what time of year you’d want to go. If you want to go during the middle of winter then a European or American summer is on the cards. If you want a white Christmas then go during our summer. All of this is dependent on where and when, so you need to sought out when you would want to travel and if it’s worth deferring your studies until after then.

If I decide to study first, how long will it be until I can travel?

If you have a course or job in mind that you want to begin first, then work out how long it’ll go for. If it’s a university course, how long does it run for? Will you then have to go into another course that adds on the years? If you are going into science-based courses then be prepared for at least five years of studying. If you’re starting work then establish how long you have to work for until you can take leave and go travel. If the course is shorter then you may as well wait it out and save up so you can travel in a couple of years’ time. 

Where would I want to go, and how much would I need to save up?

Depending on where your heart desires to go to, then you may need to save quite a bit of money, with Europe and America not particularly cheap. You should also work out how long you intend on travelling for, as a couple of weeks you may only need a few thousand dollars, whereas a few months may mean you need to try and find a job while overseas to fund your exploits. If you want to go somewhere exotic, make sure to research what accommodation you’d get and how much that and the plane tickets would cost. Also, how would you get around and how much money would you spend a day for food and shopping? If you don’t have the money, maybe study first and save up – it’ll only make that holiday better after waiting for a while.

What type of travel experience do I want?

Travelling can come in many forms. Do you want a soul-searching experience to impoverished countries where you volunteer to help struggling communities? Do you want to find yourself in completely foreign countries full of mystery and adventures? Do you want to be sipping margheritas in a resort while soaking up perfect weather and beaches? There are so many different experiences to choose from, so you should work out what you would want before you plan your trip. Different types of experiences also may need to be booked in advance, so make sure you don’t impulsively decide to travel within short notice if you want to book a luxury resort during a busy time. 

How long have I wanted to do this for?

A lot of the time it comes down to motivation. Sure, you want to travel. But do you have the effort and drive to plan, book and pay in advance? If you have been pumped about travelling and partially began planning then you may have the will to go ahead and book it all perfectly at an opportune time. Yet if you only have a pipedream and can’t be bothered going through the arduous effort of planning and researching, then maybe give the feeling time to fester until you are bursting at the seams to travel. When you build up the want to go overseas and explore then it’ll make the eventual trip all the better.


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