Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.

Hello all! If you’ve read my recent travel posts, you’ll know that I took a full year off to travel. This was September 2017 – September 2018, and it certainly was the best year of my life! I get great engagement on my travel posts, and I’ll continue posting my tips and tricks for travelling. But, I’m coming out with a new series: my travel journal!

Now, because I have a shocking memory and I knew I’d be going so many different places, I decided to keep a travel journal for the entire year. At my going away party, I was gifted a beautiful journal from my godmother and I couldn’t wait to use it! I actually went through the first one and had to buy a second so I filled two journals up with amazing adventures.

I’m going to go through them, type them up and share them with you all. It’ll be a direct copy of what I wrote, except where it doesn’t make sense. I may add some things that I remember, and I’ll intersperse this with photos. In some places I may include photos of the inside of the journals because I stuck in all sorts – photos, tickets etc.

For context before you read, I went travelling with a friend (Kieren) who I’m sure will be mentioned a lot. Anyone else involved, will be introduced during the journal.

This really was the most amazing year of my life so get ready to join my adventure! Let’s go travel Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand, Vietnam and Thailand.

I will release a new post every few days so follow me to get post notifications!

Check out the first instalment here.

How did I do it?

Of course, it’s not cheap to take a gap year. I decided one year in advance that I was going to do it, and at the time I had a part-time job as a waitress. I was also doing my MSc, with a £10,000 loan – this covered tuition and rent but I still had to cover my own living expenses. I did this using some savings that I had (and yes, I know that I’m incredibly fortunate that I did have savings). I saved all my wages to start me off on the gap year with the aim to get a job in Australia. I worked as a waitress for 4 months in Melbourne and 3 months in Brisbane, and travelled around Australia, New Zealand and South East Asia the rest of the time.

I paid for a 2-week trip to Bali and flights from thereto Australia in advance, as well as the first week in Australia. I also had to pay for the Australian working holiday visa in advance. I started the year with £2000 in savings (again, I know I’m fortunate that I had this).

Money Saving Advice for your Gap Year

Here are some tips to save money when travelling. The following contains affiliate links, but I’d like to say that I did actually use all of the following websites.

JetRadar – a great tool to search for the cheapest flights. It’s a site comparison site for flights all over the world. You can easily sort by price, and using the calendar tool you can see the cheapest days to fly to your destination.

Booking.com – my all time favourite website (I’m literally not kidding). I used this constantly when I was on my gap year, as well as on other holidays. You can sort by price and it includes all the best hostels. Additionally, sometimes hotels are on offer and actually end up being cheaper than hostels if you sometimes fancy something a bit more luxurious. I prefer this over any hostel booking sites because it always seems to be the cheapest option. Plus, it keeps all of your booking details in one place.

Trip.com – this can also be used to book flights and hotels. However, I mainly use it to search through attractions in particular places as well as book any activities, such as kayaking.

Viator – this is another website where you can book fun activities wherever you are. Again, I like to sort by price to find the activities within my budget.

I really cannot recommend these websites enough, especially JetRadar and Booking.com. They saved me so much money