Planning a gap year?


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But feeling a little daunted?

Not sure which way to turn?

Wondering where you'll end up

And what might happen along the way?

Fear not!!

We have loads of tips and advice to share with you

From our own amazing Family Gap Year!

Your Gap Year Suitcase / Luggage

"He who would travel happily must travel light." -- Antoine de St. Exupery

It is easy to assume that having a big suitcase will be the answer to all your ‘what to take’ problems. A big suitcase simply gets filled and then becomes too heavy to carry. Remember that when everyone is tired, it will be you who carries all the luggage!

As a test to see if you have gone over the top, try and carry ALL the luggage around the block and up two flights of stairs without help from the kids. If you don’t feel as if a heart attack is imminent you might be okay.

(If you live in a cold climate and plan to travel somewhere hot, strap a hot water bottle to your midriff, put on your thickest fleece and coat, cloves hat and scarf and choose the warmest day to practise!)

Backpacks versus Suitcases

This kept me awake too. Did I get us all backpacks for our luggage? Or did we all have suitcases? If we had backpacks what happened to our day packs - how would we carry them too? How much would we actually be carrying our luggage? Would the kids cope with heavy cases?

gap year luggage - drawstring bagIn the event each of the children had their own backpacks, smallish 40 litre packs that they could comfortably carry, I had a large soft holdall with wheels. I had a daypack and the children each had excellent drawstring bags that weighed almost nothing, carried loads, could be folded into tiny squares, used as swim bags, hand luggage and pillow cases. They could also be carried as backpacks, over one shoulder or simply held by their strings. These were great.

gap year suitcase backpackI also took a set of wheels which was an absolute life safer as my backpack was very heavy and when we were queuing for flights etc. I simply strapped my wheels onto my daypack and pulled it around. The trolley wheels could also be used for one of children's backpacks when things got to heavy for them in the ordinary course of things.

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