Should College Grads Take A Year Off And Travel?


The job market hasn’t been this bad in at least a generation. At least that is what the experts are telling us. For new college grads seeking their first career building jobs, the economy is truly a mixed bag – jobs are available but pay is down, way down especially for students who majored in finance and related fields.

Working For Nothing

West VirginiaYesterday, discussed an option that some students are considering taking – working for nothing (or for a small stipend) – in a bid to help them build up their skills and to expand their network. This option isn’t a good one for everyone, particularly for the person who absolutely needs to make money now.

For the new college grad, needing money now means you’ll have to take whatever job you can get, foregoing even the volunteer option mentioned yesterday. However, if your finances are in good shape and can wait out the current market, then your options are much brighter.

Waiting Out The Economy

Granted, volunteer work is a noble task, something most every American engages in at some point in their lives. But, there is another opportunity you may want to explore especially right now given the state of the economy. And that option is to spend the next several months to a year traveling.

What have you got to lose? With the economy being in the tank, can you really see yourself slogging at a job you really hate? If you were to commit at least some of that time to travel you’d be able to explore much more of the USA than ever before, perhaps travel abroad to Europe, Latin America, Asia, Australia even Africa.

Overseas Travel: A Career Builder?

Some grads worry that traveling abroad could hurt their job chances. But, a well planned year abroad can work to your advantage as you’ll interact with different people, gain an appreciation for history, and an understanding for various cultures. Those things can be valuable when it comes time to interview for a job as you’ll have a leg up on the next group of grads seeking work. Today’s companies want well rounded employees, particularly those who have first hand experience in living overseas.

Besides, if you put off the job search until June 2010, the economy is bound to look quite different than it does today. Most analysts are forecasting an early 2010 rebound with the second half of 2010 shaping up as the most promising time for a recovery to take hold.

Adv. – If you’re considering traveling, whether to spend months meandering across the United States or heading off to scale the Swiss Alps, you can save money on rail, air, hotel and other expenses. Hostels are a great way to stay for less while “couch surfing” has caught on and is the favorite way to stay for some. To find special deals, please visit, your travel portal offering airfare, car rental, lodging and additional travel information.


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