If you are planning to jet off on a gap year, you will find there are seemingly endless options for your time away. Rather than just picking a single destination, activity or occupation, you could find selecting several elements - such as skiing - helps you to make the most of your gap year.
When planning to fit working a ski season into your gap year, there are several things you will need to consider. These include thinking about what kind of role you are after, whether you will need training and where you want to go, as well as how this will fit in with your other travel plans. What's more, taking a little time to think about smaller considerations, such as the outdoor clothing you intend to wear, can help you to stick to your budget.
Working at a ski resort can be a fantastic part of your itinerary - particularly if you are keen to learn new skills and meet new people while you travel. There are plenty of options when it comes to this kind of activity, with many companies offering courses that will leave you with professional ski instructor qualifications.
Indeed, if you plan to work as an instructor, this kind of programme is often the best way of doing so - unless you are already qualified in that capacity.
You will find that courses vary in length - typically anything from around two to 12 weeks - while the placements themselves can generally last up to six months. Which course you choose will depend on how much skiing experience you have already, as well as what you hope to get out of your trip.
For example, there are basic courses that offer tuition to improve your own abilities, while instructing you on how to teach others and develop your interpersonal skills. However, there are also longer courses designed for skiers who already possess the lower-level instructor qualifications, which will raise your standard.
What's more, once you have completed your course, some providers will help you to secure work for the remainder of - or simply part of - the season, while others will actually guarantee that work will be waiting for you.
Additional benefits you may find coming your way are accommodation, meals and airport transfers - although you should always check exactly what is included with your course provider.
Of course, by donning your ski clothes and hitting the slopes for a few weeks or several months, you can have fun, meet new people and hone your skills - all incredibly worthwhile elements on any gap year.
You need not necessarily become an instructor to enjoy the ski lifestyle, however. For example, you could get involved in childcare or take up a role as a ski guide.
Regardless of what kind of position you are after, you will need to plan carefully to ensure a skiing placement fits in with your gap year plans. After all, if you decide to embark on any kind of course, this will need to be pre-booked - and you should check whether the dates of any such programmes will conflict with anything else on your itinerary.
You will also need to consider the available destinations. While you may simply wish to jet off to the most dazzling resorts, such as Whistler, you might want to think about whether there are any skiing locations close to other places you plan to - or may like to - visit during your gap year experience.
Doing so could help you cut down on both flight costs and travel times. Plus, if budget is something you are particularly concerned about, you may want to find affordable ski clothing before you set off - something that could end up saving you more money.