Gap Year Travel Sector Fuelled by Recession

Good news from Travel Mole for those catering to gap year travelers, hope everyone had a great holiday!

As recession hits the travel industry hard, a ray of light is shining in the Gap Year travel sector with records broken and positive forecasts for 2009.

Gap Year is the term given to young people in Britain who take time out between school and university, or university and full-time work, and has been broadened to take in young people having a break between jobs, even retirees seeking a lasting experience.

Growth is particularly noticeable amongst recently made redundant young professionals leaving the UK to backpack around the world.

The most popular destination is Australia, which offers a two year Working Holiday Visa to UK residents under 31. One of the least affected economies where the recruitment market is still buoyant; trips Down Under are proving to be very attractive.

The Australian Department of Immigration & Citizenship stats for Working Holiday Visas show a Q3 rise year on year by 21 percent.

Natalie Crowhurst, 25, from Bournemouth has recently been made redundant from her firm of solicitors. She is leaving in January for a six to 12 month around the world trip.

“I’m taking the opportunity to travel around the world as it’s something I’ve always wanted to do. Sure, the circumstances could be better and I’m a little worried about finding work when I get back, but this is an opportunity that I might not get again. So I can’t wait,” she said.

Tom Griffiths, founder of says, “It’s little surprise that this recession is fuelling the gap year travel sector as we are a “life transition” travel industry, which services people looking for things to do in between life stages, be it before, during or after university, in between jobs or around retirement.

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