MINTEL Report July 2008 – Adult Gap Years
Volunteer tourism: A global analysis
The Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR), June 2007:
'BSI 23 April 2007, Press Release. Safer adventure holidays and field trips for British abroad.'
See http://www.bsi-global.com/en/About-BSI/News-Room/BSI-News-Content/General/News-Content/ for more details.
'Workers ditch commuting for globetrotting', Direct Line research, Feb 2007.
Millions of British workers are set to trade in their parking permit for a passport as they plan to take sabbaticals from work. Nearly 5.5 million employees* are currently contemplating their escape from the workplace, according to new research from Direct Line Travel Insurance. And they're set to join the ranks of the three million workers ** who have already temporarily climbed off the career ladder over the past five years.
Attracted by the benefits of working for firms that offer their staff time out, one in four employees (26 per cent) work for a company where sabbaticals are a staff perk. The government, public sector, finance and insurance industries are leading the way (40 per cent of employees working in these sectors are able to take sabbaticals) followed by IT and telecomms (36 per cent) and medicine/health service (25 per cent).
Employees offered sabbaticals by sector:
= 1. Government/ Public Sector (40 per cent)
= 1. Finance/ Insurance (40 per cent)
3. IT/ Telecommunications (36 per cent)
National average (26 per cent)
4. Medicine/ Health Services (25 per cent)
5. Education (24 per cent)
= 6. Travel/ Transport (22 per cent)
= 6. Construction (22 per cent)
8. Retail (14 per cent)
According to the Direct Line Travel Insurance research, wanderlust is the main reason why people are packing their bags - 43 per cent having always wanted to go travelling. However, one in three workers planning a sabbatical say they are looking to take a break from the rat race (30 per cent) and one in four claim to be suffering from burn out (23 per cent). Sabbaticals also appear to make sense for businesses, helping with recruitment and retention. One in four employees (24 per cent) said they would be more likely to work for a firm that offered sabbaticals, with one in three (33 per cent) saying they would be more likely to remain with a firm long-term if they knew they could take a career break. Despite this, not all firms are in favour of sabbaticals. More than one in 10 workers who have taken a sabbatical said that their employer was not supportive, with two thirds (64 per cent) of these revealing their boss had tried to prevent them from leaving. One in three quit their job completely for the freedom of travelling.
Chris Price, Business Manager at Direct Line Travel Insurance comments: 'Taking an extended break from work used to be the preserve of a privileged few, but now more and more people are taking time out from their careers to travel. It seems that firms are recognising this desire and are offering sabbaticals as a way of recruiting and retaining the best staff.'
For further information please contact:
Carmel McCarthy / Direct Line Press Office
Notes to Editors:
Research was carried out online between 30 January and 1 February 2007 by YouGov Plc, who questioned a sample of 2,407 adults in Britain. Results are weighted to be representative of the GB population. YouGov is a member of the British Polling Council.
Notes to Editors:
* There are 44.2 million adults in Britain (Office for National Statistics). Sixty nine per cent of adults are in employment of whom 18 per cent are planning a sabbatical (YouGov). Therefore:
44,200,000 x 0.69 x 0.18 = 5,489,640
** There are 44.2 million adults in Britain (Office for National Statistics). Sixty nine per cent of adults are in employment of whom 10 per cent have taken a sabbatical (YouGov). Therefore:
44,200,000 x 0.69 x 0.1 = 3,094,800
'YouGov poll, reported in The Evening Standard 9 November 2006
'Milkround research on 3 July 2006 on Gap Years' (Extract)
With a large number of our subscribers choosing to go on gap years, we decided to carry out a survey to ask them about their plans, and what they hoped to get out of it. We also surveyed candidates who had already been on gap years to ask them what the benefits had been for them; and asked candidates who were not going on a gap year, what the reason for their decision was.
As one would expect, we found enormous variety in terms of activities on gap years (although tending to fall into one of the categories of paid work, volunteering and travelling), and in terms of destinations (ranging from the UK to locations all over the world), and in the reasons why students and graduates chose to go on gap years, and the benefits which candidates felt they had gained from doing so.
Respondents were nearly unanimous however in citing their gap year as beneficial to their careers and to their personal development, and in hoping to gain professional and personal skills (or declaring that they had done, if they had been on a gap year in the past).
378 students and graduates answered the poll. In the first part of this report we cover the different activities and destinations of gappers; while in the second we look at the reasons for going and the benefits gained from gap year activities.
See http://www.milkround.com/s4/jobseekers/zones/gap%5Fyear/ for more details.
'Gap Year Travel', report from Mintel, July 2005 - http://www.mintel.com
A new age for gap year travel
Latest research from MINTEL's Travel and Tourism Analyst shows that older 'Career Gappers' and 'Denture Venturers' are giving students a run for their money in the multi-billion pound global gap year market. Having only really taken off in the early 1990s, the global gap year market is now worth a substantial £5 billion, accounting for between 1 and 1.5 million trips a year. What is more, by 2010, an estimated 2 million gap year trips will be made by travellers from around the world, with total expenditure more than doubling to a staggering £11 billion. "The growing popularity of gap year travel is showing no signs of abating. But MINTEL believes that it will be the increasing number of older adults such as 'Career Gappers', taking a break from work or 'Denture Venturers' going on pre-retirement travels, who will in fact boost the market in the future," comments Jessica Rawlinson, Publishing Manager, International Travel and Tourism at MINTEL.
"Here at gapyear.com we have seen a similar shift in the age of gap year travellers. Changing work patterns, from life-long to more 'portfolio' careers, has enabled a wider number of people to take career breaks between jobs. Employers today are also undoubtedly becoming increasingly aware of the value of longer periods of international travel. As a result, many 25 - 35 year olds are temporarily opting out of working life before they settle into another job, buy a house or perhaps even start a family. In addition, rising numbers of older people in the population of developed countries, together with the increased health and wealth of this age group, has helped to spawn pre-retirement gap travellers. Indeed an ever increasing number of 50 - 55 year olds are 'ski-ing' - spending the kids inheritance - and becoming so-called 'Denture Venturers'," comments Tom Griffiths, founder of gapyear.com.
British gappers show the world the way:
Remarkably, UK gappers account for half of all expenditure within this booming sector. Today, the British gap year travel market comprises approximately 1% of all UK outbound trips and around 10% of outbound travel expenditure. In total, the UK market for 18-24-year-old travellers is estimated to be around 200,000. But this market is set to grow; with more young people being involved in tertiary education and increasing numbers of students each year opting to take a year out. Amazingly however, there are now almost as many British pre-retirement gappers as pre-university gappers.
Gap year travel: A £5000 spending spree:
Whilst gap travellers do not spend huge amounts on a day to day basis, the long duration of their trips means that total expenditure is usually well above the average for overseas travel. Today, the average gap year traveller spends around £4,800, but the most extravagant group is the 'Career Gappers', as they can shell out almost double this (£9,000) on their gap year. "As 'Career Gappers' have already spent several years working, they usually have greater disposable income to raise the funds for volunteering, courses or expeditions than pre-university gappers. What is more, as volunteers, they bring more experience than students who are travelling immediately after they leave school. And while they often do not yet have too many financial and personal responsibilities, they can afford to spend more than pre-retirement gappers," explains Jessica Rawlinson. On a positive note, the money spent on these travels is invaluable for local economies. Gap travellers tend to stay in locally-run accommodation and buy locally-produced goods and so a greater percentage of each pound, dollar, or whatever currency spent remains in the country visited.
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The Russell Commission, March 2005.
With sound recommendations on international volunteering in gap years, including:
* The need to show a clear link to UK volunteering
* The requirement to be responsive directly to real community needs
* To be accessible to all
The 'Review of Gap Year Provision' report, published 29 July 2004.
Commissioned by the Department for Education and Skills (DfES) on gap years, it was carried out by Dr Andrew Jones from Birkbeck College, University of London. The main issues addressed were:
* defining what a gap year is
* national levels of participation
* the benefits and disadvantages of undertaking different kinds of activities on a gap year
* a survey of the organisations that provide gap year opportunities
* existing standards and approaches to quality assurance in gap year provision.
IDS HR Studies Update 776, June 2004.http://www.incomesdata.co.uk/studies/careerbreaks.htm
Career breaks and sabbaticals - gap years.
'Looks at the growing demand from employees for career breaks.
Shows how employers consider these requests.
Discusses the impact on pensions and other employee benefits.
Looks at arrangements for staying in touch with employees on career breaks.
Describes the typical terms on which they eventually return to their job.
Includes details of sabbatical and career break schemes in 19 organisations.
Many employees now want the flexibility to take an extended period away from work to travel abroad, study, look after children or older relatives, or simply to recharge their batteries. Employers are increasingly accommodating such requests by offering career breaks or sabbaticals.
Career break schemes give employers the discretion to retain valued employees who want to take a significant amount of time, perhaps years, away from work to focus on these other aspects of their lives. Employees are not paid during this time, but have the right to return to work or at least to apply for re-engagement on favourable terms.
Sabbaticals are much rarer and are normally offered for shorter periods, typically up to three months, as a reward for continuous service with the employer. Employees can choose what to do with the time, and there tend to be very few restrictions. Individuals remain employed, sometimes on full pay, and return automatically to their job at the end of the sabbatical.
This in-depth article is the lead feature article in the June 2004 IDS HR Studies Update.'