Many of us are scared of going traveling for a longer time because we’re afraid that it would hurt our career. We’ve all heard about how bad it is to have a ”gap” on your CV. But often, travel can boost your career rather than destroy it. There are several valuable advantages with having ”traveled the world” written on your CV.
1) Traveling shows an interest and curiosity in the world
Almost every employer will value an employee who wants to learn more and increase their knowledge. To travel is to learn about the world in the best way possible. It also shows a curiosity both in different people and different cultures.
2) You will grow a bigger social network by traveling
Traveling people are interesting people. Long-term travel seems to attract a certain type of person that is an original thinker with beautiful values – who is full of great ideas. To get to know people from all over the world will grow your network in a positive way – and you never know who might bring you that information about an open position or a new company.
3) It’s the perfect opportunity to start your own business
You’ll find few periods of life that you are not either working or in school. Many people have dreams about starting their own business one day but can never find the time. Traveling is an ideal time to also start thinking and planning your own business. You’ll feel more relaxed, inspired and creative than you would on a weekend at home after 40 hours of hard work. You will probably also meet inspiring people during your travel that you can talk to for suggestions and ideas.
4) It will give you an advantage when working towards different countries
Many job opportunities today include contact with other countries and cultures. Perhaps the manufacturer is located in China, or your IT department is in India. To have experienced and met people from these countries and seen how they live and how they react differently to situations will make it easier to work with them. You’ll have a better understanding of how they might approach certain aspects of the job, meaning you’ll be more aware of potential problems as well as advantages.
5) It shows commitment
To travel the world requires planning and money. You don’t just suddenly go traveling, you save and you plan for months, even years. Completing a trip around the world shows dedication. It gives the impression of someone with a strong will, a person that doesn’t just talk about something, but who makes it happen.
6) You will pick up amazing language skills
You can choose the destination to be able to learn or improve your second language. English is easy. Even if you travel to a country where they speak Portuguese or Mandarin you will always meet other travelers that speak English and you will always be able to use this common language to get yourself understood. Non-native English speakers will find they start to think in English or will become capable of long discussions over a beer. But if English is your mother tongue, it’s a good idea to think about what language you want to learn when planning your trip. A second language is always a boost on your CV and will broaden your possibilities when looking for jobs.
7) Traveling gives you time to reflect on what is important in life
Sometimes traveling will make you realize that you were at the wrong place at home. Maybe you have followed the wishes of others more then you’ve followed your own, or maybe things have just happened by themselves until you suddenly realize you’re somewhere you don’t want to be. Traveling and seeing how people live in other cultures will make you reflect on choices in your own life. In some places people live for their family, while at others, work is everything – and you bring your family to the office instead. To do a world tour can really be an opportunity to reflect on your career and think whether you need to change it in some way.
8) You will be more relaxed when traveling for work
Traveling as part of a job sounds like an amazing perk – but it’s not always a dream. Oftentimes you need to travel by yourself. You might end up alone in a plane with bad turbulence or on a train in the middle of nowhere in China, on your way to a factory. You might also find yourself at some of the riskiest airports and railway stations in the world. It can be a nightmare for those who are not used to solo travel… But those who have done a world tour will find a bumpy flight or a 15-hour train journey in their stride.
9) Your social skills will become phenomenal
To travel also means to meet and make contact with new people. It’s finding a connection with people even when you’re from totally different parts of the world. Unlike at home, where you’re settled with familiar friends, when traveling you often make new friends for every new city you visit or hostel you stay at. There is nothing better for your career than to be socially competent. You can have any old CV, but if you manage to get along with the interviewer you’ve got a chance to convince them that you are the right person for the job, regardless of your background.
10) You will be the after-work queen
No-one will ever be able to compete with you when you start to tell your stories from traveling to the bar after work. About how you managed to book a flight ticket to Kingston in Canada when all your friends were going to Kingston in Jamaica. Or the time you got an address wrong and your taxi driver let you off in the middle of the slum of Mumbai. Of course, I don’t mean you should spend every moment talking about yourself – but sometimes it feels good to have a few really great stories up your sleeve when getting to know your co-workers