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Top Tips For Gap Year Travel

01 January 0001

Deciding what to do on your gap year abroad is a big decision so we have put together some of our top tips on how to prepare and make the right choices about the gap year opportunities available to you.


If you have any questions or cannot find the answer to your query please get in touch by calling us on 023 8020 6977. Alternatively you can check out our FAQs to see if the answer you are looking for is there. 

Decide what to do, where to go & what to get out of it

Whether you want to do the full ski instructor training course or something shorter like the snowboard 4 week course, there are lots of different options as well as different  gap year jobs in resort if that is your aim.

The choice of how to spend your gap year is yours

Skier jumping with crossed skis in WhistlerMake sure what you choose to do is right for you. The best way to ensure value for money is to finish the course! If you’re someone who isn’t sure about being away for Christmas then arrange your gap year program to start in January/February. Having said that, if you are away for Christmas in a ski resort there are so many others in the same situation it’s a great bonding experience in itself, and anyway, what’s better than skiing on Christmas day?!

Make sure you organize your VISA in time

Often you may not need a visa for doing the course, but it’s always worth checking. If you are staying longer than 6 months e.g to get a job after the course, then make sure you apply for your visa in time. Usually visas are released in December/January and they only issue a certain amount each year, so if you need one get in there! More info can be found on the Government of Canada’s website.

Choose the right course to teach in the country you want to work in

The ski instructor and snowboard instructor courses in Whistler that we run mean you gain Canadian ski/snowboard qualifications, whether CSIA courses (skiing level 1 & 2) or CASI courses (snowboarding level 1 & 2) but some countries have other criteria to work in certain countries. The British BASI qualification is also an option and if you sign up for our 11 week course in February you get not only qualify with your CSIA but BASI certification as well (BASI level 2). Many qualifications are affiliated with ISIA (International Ski Instructor Association) and mean they are valid all over the world.

Shop around for the right instructor course for you at the best price

Doing research about which course to do or arranging your gap year travel has never been easier with everything available online. If you find the same course cheaper with someone else, at International Academy we’ll match it so you can be sure you get quality tuition at the best price. You should also look at what is included in each price too. At Snow Academy if you book to stay at the Alta Vista Chalet in Whistler, 6 days of food is included, many other companies offer less than this so you will have to spend more on your meals once you are there. There are also options to stay in self-catering accommodation if you are happy cooking for yourself more often.

Proper insurance is essential

If you’re travelling in your gap year make you have a policy that covers you for both medical treatment as well as personal belongings while you are away on your gap year adventures. It’s better to have the cover and not need it rather than a large unwanted bill for a trip to the doctors.

Make sure you call your parents, especially when you first arrive!

They usually just want to know you are safe! The benefit of booking with a UK based company like Ski Weekends Snow Academy means your parents can call us in UK hours if there are any problems, there are no issues with time zones.

We know it sounds obvious but…check the date on your passport!

It can take weeks to renew a passport so make sure yours is valid for the time you will be away and get it organized in plenty of time before you go. We recommend you don’t leave it until the last minute.

Don't forget you can call us with any questions on 023 8020 6977. We are here to help!

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