Travelling abroad can be a very worthwhile and rewarding experience but can also be daunting and often requires a lot of planning and research. People travel abroad for many reasons such as work, leisure or volunteering. Teenagers take a gap year, workers take a career break and some people combine travel and volunteering. Others work abroad to broaden their horizons, gain work experience to increase their job prospects or simply because job opportunities arise in other countries.

The Irish Department of Foreign Affairs have issued some general guidelines that help people prepare for travel abroad. Much of this information is also available on the ‘travelling abroad – general tips’ on the Citizens Information website.

A gap year for grown ups which can include volunteer, adventure, language learning or family travel is becoming increasingly popular and travel ideas can be found on various sites including gap year for grown ups,

I-to-I travel organises different types of volunteer work which is combined with travel to many exciting parts of the world e.g. theatre and education in India, surf and teach English in Indonesia or archaeology work experience in Peru.

In Ireland USIT is the specialist in student, youth and independent travel. There is no longer an upper age limit for travellers who want to avail of USIT’s services which include a full range of travel agent products as well as travel, TEFL, volunteer and work programmes including the J1 US Student Visa Programme.