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Tabi Jackson Gee | Contributing Writer | Thursday, 25 June 2015

The Things You Definitely Need To Buy Before You Head Off On Your Gap Year

The Things You Definitely Need To Buy Before You Go Travelling

The Debrief: I mean, on top of a backpack and thirty pairs of pants.

So, congratulations are in order for YOU. 'Cos you’ve bitten the bullet and instead of going straight from the chains of full time education into the chains of full time employment, or more full time education, you’ve decided to escape into the great unknown and travel the world and ya know, like, totally find yourself.

In all seriousness - good on you. Never again will you have the chance to be so free and explore the world with careless abandon. You’ve totally made the right decision. BUT. Before you go. There are more than a few things that are completely essential to your wellbeing/fun-having/jolly old time. And we’re not talking the first aid kit, the she-wee, or the padlocks (although those are, of course, also important) – no, we’ve got the list of stuff even your older sister hasn’t told you about. So get that leather bound travelling diary out and write these down, ok? (And don’t forget to send us a postcard to say thanks.)

A hand-held fan and a travel pillow for a little bit of comfort

Perfect for any of those gruesome long bus and train journeys. Or for when you’ve been totally mugged off and you’re overheating in a room that promised air con, full size beds and all the mod-cons but is, in fact, an airless, rat-infested shed.

Gap Year purchases

A jewellery making kit to keep you entertained

Not such an obvious one here, but hear us out. Imagine, if your bus breaks down mid-48 hour journey from Thailand to Vietnam, and you’re sat on a dusty roadside with no battery on your iPhone, you can make a cool, like, anklet instead.

Gap Year

Capture, watch and share every glorious moment with a TomTom Bandit action cam

 There’s absolutely no point in having all this fun travelling the world if you’re not going to make everyone back home jealous about it. This ace TomTom Bandit action cam lets you edit HD video (up to 4k) while you’re on the move – you don’t need to download it first! So you can be climbing a mountain in South America one minute, editing your video when you get to the top and sharing it with your mates back home as soon as you have internet. And – if you’re getting really creative - you just shake it to edit your footage! Get one from Currys PC World here.

Gap year purchases

A diary, cellotape and heaps of pens

Hopefully you’re carefully taking notes in your travel journal right now, but if not, get a piece of paper and add one to your shopping list. (We love this one on Etsy.) Plus, take heaps of pens – they’re a great thing to give to cute kids that you’ll meet in some far-flung corner of the world. And cello tape to stick bits and bobs you pick up a long the way in. (AKA evidence to show your parents that you have been an intrepid cultural explorer, and not just sunning yourself on a beach for six months.)

The perfect shoes to wear absolutely everywhere

Birkenstocks, natch. Cool AND comfortable.


Last but not least, something to make sure you don’t stink.

No matter how many days you’ve gone without having a shower, there’s still never an excuse to smell like old cheese. Plus, you never know who you might meet in a hostel bar. Decant some of your scent into mini bottles so you never get caught out.

Perfume Decanter

Like this? Then you might also be interested in:

Rome On A Budget (Prepare For The Best Pizza Of Your Life)

How To Have A Holiday In Istanbul For Nearly No Money

Fun Stuff For Under £50 To Do In The UK This Summer If You Can’t Afford A Holiday

Follow Tabi on Twitter @tabijgee

Picture: Rory DCS 

Tags: Leaving on a jet plane, Travel