Each year, more than 230,000 people aged between 18-25 decide to embark on a gap year, eager to fill their days with fun, productivity and adventure. You can do anything in your year off, but make sure to spend some of these days wisely by travelling and immersing yourself in a variety of different cultures. Interrailing in Europe is an amazing experience that is perfect for any gap year – here are some reasons why.
1. Take a break from daily stressors
Life can really get on top of us all and sometimes we just need to get away from it all. Maybe you’ve had a stressful year, or perhaps you’re uncertain about the next steps you need to take in your life; whatever the reason, a gap year interrailing around Europe could be just the thing to clear your mind. Experience the world and realise just how much the planet has to offer; it will broaden your mind and help you to see the bigger picture. When you come home, your mind will be much more relaxed.
2. Save your money
Many people put off travelling because they can’t afford the expense, or feel like they have to invest their money into other things. However, when done right, travelling doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Interrailing is a great way for people to keep the costs down, as a special card will allow you to travel around Europe for very little expense. There’s even the option to sleep on the train, cutting the cost of your accommodation expenses too.
3. Experience a variety of cultures
The hardest part about travelling is deciding which destinations to add to your itinerary. However, if you’re travelling via a high speed train, you’ll be able to fit a lot more destinations into your time abroad compared to travelling by plane or car.
Germany is a great place to add to your European bucket list, especially if you’re desperate to try authentic German beer and schnitzels. The UK is another underrated European destination, which is why more than 40 million people flocked there in 2018 to explore the monuments and learn more about the culture.
4. A chance to try something new
Life is short, so you should attempt to try as many new things as you can during your gap year. When planning out your travels, you might not add European destinations like Slovenia and Albania to your list, opting for countries that are more popular. However, interrailing gives you the chance to stray away from your plan and visit these destinations. Who knows, they might turn out to be the most fun and exciting countries of the entire trip.
5. It’s better for the planet
If you’re an eco-conscious traveller, interrailing is the best option for you. Cars and planes produce a lot of CO2 emissions, increasing the size of your carbon footprint the further you travel. However, electric trains are one of the cleanest ways to travel as they don’t produce any direct carbon emissions. They’re also very frequent, so you don’t need to rush or stress about missing a certain train, as another is bound to turn up shortly after.
6. The luxury of space and comfort
There’s nothing worse than being cooped up in a plane or car, with next to no legroom. A train is much more spacious, giving you the chance to get up and walk around the carriages if you need to stretch your legs. The view from the train is an adventure in itself, as you get to take in the beautiful views of European cities and countrysides as you journey to your next location.