Are you broke, restless and ready for the experience of a lifetime?
Perhaps you are a fresh grad thirsty for a challenge or maybe you are simply sick-to-death of your soul destroying job and want to do something wild with your life, before you wake up one day with 4 kids, 2 dogs, 6 cats & a mortgage!
If you are in need of some ideas to make this year particularly extraordinary have a squiz through some of the below options and get planning TODAY.
1. Volunteer abroad
Pick an organization or political issue that means something to you and get Googling! Most volunteer programmes cover your expenses & accommodation in exchange for your services; they are also very flexible so you can stay as long as you like.
Volunteering will throw you from your comfort zone while experiencing a thrilling new part of the world. You will meet some astonishing likeminded humans, not to mention volunteer experience is extremely rewarding and compliments your CV in a big way! Would you hire the grad who spent their summer watching Grey’s Anatomy on the couch or the inspiring young lass/lad who just saved 10,000 sea turtles from an untimely death in Costa Rica?
Some popular organizations are below (just to name a few, there are literally HUNDREDS of choices)
- American hiking society – build new trails all over the USA! If you are obsessed with nature, wild life and the great outdoors this adventure has your name on it! Make the national parks of the US your home until further notice. See ya later office chair!
- One World 365 – Ignite your inner wanderlust and choose from over 200 meaningful travel opportunities in literally any industry you want!
- A21 – Help rehabilitate survivors of human trafficking. The A21 Campaign has teams in Greece, the UK, the US, South Africa, Thailand & Australia (just to name a few!).
- United planet – Improve the lives of children living in orphanages worldwide.
- Go Eco – help save endangered wild animals and work on conservation projects. Let your inner greeny shine!
- Habitat for humanity – help build homes for people with poor housing conditions in the beautiful New Zealand
- WWOFF – World Wide opportunities on organic farms – perfect for between travelling, give back to the country you are visiting while getting to know a local family.
- Camp America – teach kids an awesome new skill while basking in the American summer! From sailing to horse riding, Camp America pays you enough to cover your flights, visa, insurance and a bit of free travel afterwards!
2. Nanny abroad
Au Pair agencies are becoming exceedingly popular as a safe and swift way to get young people overseas. Register to an online agency such as Au Pair link and make your profile jump off the page. Make sure to upload friendly photos of yourself interacting with your own family and build on your experience by offering to babysit children in your neighbourhood. The more references and experience the better with this industry as the host family needs to completely trust the Au Pair they select. Nannying abroad can be a short term summer stint or a full time 6 months or annual commitment. Most positions are for live in nannies so you will earn a small wage and have virtually no expenses. Bonuses include: meeting other Au Pairs in your area. Your agency places significant emphasis on social bonding to ensure your happiness abroad. Another bonus is travelling with the host family to their favourite holiday spots and picking up the local language. By the end of your time working as an Au Pair you will have a second family which will make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside until the next adventure.
3. Study abroad
Almost all Universities have exchange programmes for undergrad degrees so jump on their websites and key in partner universities to reveal your DREAM SCHOOL! Auckland University have an exceptional programme called 360 Auckland Abroad which allows students to go on exchange at any time during their studies so if you missed the boat during your bachelors it’s not too late! (Yes I’m talking honours and grad diplomas!). The list of partner schools is beyond impressive; you can get a $50,000+ Ivy League education and pay Auckland prices! There are also guaranteed scholarships available covering your flights, insurance & visa! Why wouldn’t you make the most of that? Perhaps you want to compliment your undergraduate degree by completing honours or maybe you want to explore a new hobby such as music, acting or another language. Study abroad is a once in a life time opportunity where you will live, learn and meet a bunch of life-long friends & experience a new style of college life. Bonus – New Zealand students are still eligible to get the student allowance while overseas so this adventure is partially funded! More often than not your expenses abroad are cheaper than in Auckland unless you are living with your parents. Auckland ranks close to Manhattan with living costs so wouldn’t you rather be in New York??
4. House sit or house swap
If you have a small amount of money put away (which could cover your spending money) house sitting is a great option to give yourself a retreat somewhere exotic rent free! Like landing a job as an Au Pair you will need an eye-catching profile so hosts can trust you with their home. Websites such as mindmyhouse.com are perfect as you can select where in the world you want to experience and check out the homes available. If you love animals there are far more jobs available for those willing to animal sit! Look after some huskies in the Canadian mountains or bask in the sun with a house cat in Paris! If you have your own place back home then house swapping is a good option. Sites like Air BNB and home exchange.com are well established for these types of swaps.
5. Work on a yacht or cruise ship
Crewing a yacht is an awesome opportunity to live alongside the rich and the fabulous while meeting a bunch of new friends and saying bon voyage to the real world! The views, the unique destinations and the people you meet – this is guaranteed to be a life changer! Working on a cruise ship is also a mind blowing experience (according to the many crew I have had the pleasure of meeting). You can delve into an array of different positions on a cruise ship including beauty therapy, hospitality, admin, retail & entertainment. Bonus: if you are in retail and are selling alcohol you can leave the ship and explore whenever you are in port. This is because the alcohol laws differ per country so most ships tend to avoid selling when in port. This means you get to travel for free with the passengers! Jump on cruisejobfinder.com TODAY!
6. Return a motor home to its home location
Larger countries such as the US & Australia are often in need of ‘time rich’ travellers to return their motor vehicles back to their home base. This earns you a free luxury motor home for the road trip of a life time! Try and work out a reasonable time frame for the journey so you can stop several times along the way and make the most of the scenery. Surfing trip from San Francisco to San Diego anyone? Kea is a company in Australia & New Zealand which offers this idyllic escape.
So what are you waiting for?