English speaking USA and Canada are popular with gap year travellers. This vast continent provides a wide range of gap year projects, from environmental volunteer work, to paid care jobs. Most gap year students choose to take part in a number of shorter courses that allow them to travel around and see more places. Alternatively you may wish to take up a more permanent role that includes a wage, and use that money to travel before your working holiday visa expires. Both the US and Canada are home to people from all over the world, making it relatively easy to settle in without much in the way of culture shock.
Au Pair Jobs Abroad
Gap Year Provider: Smaller Earth, Worldwide
Smaller Earth are the UK's leading overseas Au Pair company. We match thousands of participants to families across the globe in countries such as America, Spain, Italy, China and New Zealand. With placements lasting from 3 months to a year, we have the perfect international job waiting for you.
Outdoor Instructor Leader at Summer Camp America
Gap Year Provider: Camp Leaders, North America
Work as an outdoor and adventure trip leader at a USA Summer Camp with Camp Leaders, running activities with children of all ages. From Orienteering to Nature and Hiking, you can work in America for your summer job abroad with Camp Leaders.
Canada, Romania, Brazil, South Africa
Take part in coaching a range of sports including football, rugby, cricket, netball, swimming or skiing. Help and support groups of disadvantaged children around the world or enjoy combining your love of skiing or snowboarding with instructing. Combine sport and travel passions and make a difference
Voluntary Conservation Projects Worldwide
Make a real difference in one of our outstanding, exciting conservation projects Worldwide - From rehabilitating the gorgeous Orang-utans in Borneo, to remote Rainforest Research to Swimming with endangered Great White Sharks in South Africa - We have over 50 projects to choose from!
Childcare Gap Year
Brazil, Chile, Canada, Romania, South Africa, Tanzania
Volunteering on childcare projects puts beaming smiles on the faces of vulnerable children. By simple interaction and play, be part of helping children learn English and supporting their carers who really appreciate your help. Oyster offer worthwhile projects in Africa, North and South America.
Ski / Snowboard Instructor Course
Set yourself up for a dream career in the snowsports industry with a structured coaching program and internationally recognised qualifications. Our famous instructor courses are amazing life experiences and afterwards you could find yourself living in the mountains.
Food & Beverages Department Whistler Blackcomb
Join the biggest department, serving hungry and cold skiers hearty food on top of the mountain. Some positions require skiing to work each morning all include a free meal every shift ( great for the budget!). Work 4 x 10 hours per week so plenty of time to play !! Please review our profile
Costa Rica Marine Adventure
Join our tropical Marine Conservation project in Costa Rica and scuba dive in one of the world's most stunning settings. Once fully trained, volunteer at our Sea Turtle conservation project and help protect marine life. Gain three PADI qualifications. See Manta rays, dolphins, sharks and whales.
Bahamas Marine Conservation
Join our Volunteer Marine Conservation project in the Bahamas and help create UNESCO protected marine parks, assist local communities and teach conservation awareness in primary schools. Learn to dive, become a PADI Advanced Diver!
Volunteer in Central America
A Raleigh expedition to Costa Rica & Nicaragua is a unique opportunity to experience incredible cultures and help tackle poverty in some of the most beautiful places on earth. You will be working towards: Community resilience, Environment volunteering and an exhilarating adventure trek.
Dance Gap Year
New York, New York Cordoba, Buenos Aires, Mendoza, Argentina
Primarily focused on the choreographic process, Dance Gap Year includes dance pedagogy, technique classes and community workshops. Classes are heavily focused in Modern, Contemporary, Improvisation, Hip Hop, and body wellness. Dancers put on a show case and must complete a 50 hour internship.
Marine Scientist Training
Gain valuable experience in Marine Conservation, either as a way into the industry or as a platform for further studies. Based on our Marine Research Station in the Bahamas, working with the Bahamas National Trust to create a new Marine Park and Bahamas first "Green Nature" Island, you will learn gl
Conservation Gap Year
Australia, Costa Rica, Galapagos, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Namibia, S.Africa, Malaysia, Borneo, Romania, Ecuador
Make a genuine difference with Oyster's many links to charities and organisations from around the world. Volunteer with exotic wildlife and help with environmental conservation by choosing from a variety of beautiful and exotic locations. Volunteer from as little as one week to up to 12 months.
Australia, Canada, Thailand, China, Romania, New Zealand
Chose from instructing, hospitality and support roles in one of our Canadian ski resorts. Experience the Aussie Outback or the cosmopolitan city of Sydney or Auckland. We offer the chance to earn money teaching in China or Thailand.Travel, gain experience, get to know the locals and enhance your CV!
Looking for something else? We have plenty more gap year ideas to inspire you.
Popular North American Destinations:
Quick America Facts:
Population - 500 million
Languages - English, and French in Canada
You will need a working holiday visa. Check with the Foreign Office for more information!
The United States of America and Canada have always been viewed as a land of opportunity. Close ties with the UK, combined with the dominance of the English language, means that course providers offer a good range of opportunities in North America. You will need to decide whether you want to stay and work in one place, or travel around in order to see as much of the continent as possible.
The USA and Canada cover such a vast area (Canada is the second largest country in the world by area, and USA the third), which means there really is something for everyone. The USA has some of the major cities of the world like New York and San Francisco where you'll find famous landmarks and diverse cultures. Canada is considered the must visit country for wilderness lovers because you'll find amazing ski resorts high up in the mountains, the most rugged and spectacular landscapes and some of the most famous natural wonders of the world like Niagara Falls.
A popular choice by thousands of British travellers each year is to teach a range of activities to children at one of the many Summer Camps throughout North America. This is a fantastic option if you want to spend time working in a foreign country and building your experience, perhaps before or during university, and it allows you to earn money to fund further travel after the job finishes meaning you can make the most of your time overseas and see as much of the country as possible.
For those who want some action and adventure on their North American gap year, why not try a mountain biking course or train as a ski instructor and work a season at one of the top resorts in Canada. Work on a ranch in the USA, or help out as a community volunteer in a school, or wildlife centre. The choices are endless.
The ten provinces and three territories of Canada form a country larger than the United States. Canada is a land of contrasts; the vast, flat wheat producing prairies, sit alongside the towering, jagged peaks of the Canadian Rockie Mountains. In such a landscape, gap years come in all shapes and sizes. Make sure you check the Foreign and Commonwealth Office for travel advice, and visa information. And research the climate for the part of Canada you are heading to as the temperature extremes of hot and cold are far greater than we are used to in the UK.
Improve your skiing and snowboarding technique and qualify to teach the basics to tourists at some of Canada's premier winter resorts, including Whistler and Lake Louise. Some of the courses offered by our advertisers below also guarantee a paid job at the end of your gap year course. Alternatively enjoy a month long mountain biking course designed to improve your skills and allow you to experience some single track we can only dream of here in the UK.
Get help with finding employment in Canada with support, advice and tips from some of the best gap year companies. There is a wide range of work available if you are persistent and are flexible about the type of work you are willing to do. There are season opportunities in the winter sports resorts, and when the snow melts you will find plenty of work in bars and cafes, harvest work, and jobs on farms.
Whilst cities like Vancouver and Toronto with their incredible standards of living are popular places to visit and live, one of the main attractions for many people visiting Canada is the wilderness. An almost incomprehesible amount of land is still completely untamed and is a big pull for people looking for a true outdoor adventure. Perhaps you could fill your Canadian gap year with a few weeks under canvas on a guided tour of the great outdoors.