Why Choose Us?

Just because we have “Gap” in our name does not make us the same.

Xtreme Gap Year offers you the chance to join exciting trips run by very adventurous travel experts! We believe incredible travel experiences create better travel memories.

We believe this because we know it. We have been there we have done it.

With us you will do things you just cannot do at home, you will tell your friends and colleagues about your experiences but they probably won’t believe you.

With us you will not be treated like a sheep, lead from place to place chucked in the revolving door of pre-manufactured travel. You will be taken to some amazing places to do some amazing things with equally adventurous people all the really experiencing travel.

Many of our trips are unique, handcrafted by us through our own experiences not sold to you off the back of the brochure. We are about helping  travellers do mind-blowing things, ideal if you are inexperienced in travelling, or you want a genuinely different adventure holiday.

We are passionate about your travel experiences as they are our experiences, and we know our stuff as well. If you take a look at who is involved in Xtreme Gap Year you will see a ridiculously overqualified group of people who have lived away in different countries and still do live all over the world creating unforgettable adventures for you.

“Many of the trips you will see on the site are unique to Xtreme Gap Year. That means they are better quality, low cost, but ultimately better adventures.”

Oliver Bray – Xtreme Gap Year Co-Founder

That’s right we run many of our own trips whereas the gap year companies are middlemen. By cutting out the middleman we are able to offer more to lower costs. And that is important to us because we are all about creating amazing trips not creating profit. We have offices in Thailand, Mexico, Majorca, Netherlands, Sydney and Cape Town. They are all home offices not high Street with our staff based all over the world we are able to react to and create amazing trips in popular and developing locations. But because we run virtual offices are costs are low which means without having to overcharge on our trips we can include more.

It’s those extra activities that create the moments that you will remember, it’s what we do, it’s what we love. We are a company that is not about the money: we are about amazing travel experiences and we can’t wait for you to feel them.

“We are definitely not your average travel company. We are passionate about YOUR trip and do a lot of research to make our trips better!”

Sarah Flinn Campbell – Sales Manager at Xtreme Gap Year

  • The best value compared to every single gap year company bar none. As we have a network of online offices we keep our overheads lower and pass on the cost savings to you, or include more in our itineraries when compared like for like with other companies
  • Qualified & knowledgeable staff. We really do know our stuff. On our staff, we have dive instructors, Divemaster’s, Surf Chicks, Wildlife lovers and genuine travel junkies. We have offices located in The Netherlands, Spain, Australia, and South Africa and Bali. We know our destinations inside and out and can give you the best advice speaking from experience.
  • We are not in it for the money, we do it because we love it. On this site you will not find any volunteering programmes, that’s because we have strong ethics and do not agree with making money from people’s goodwill. Ask other companies why they offer these programs and better yet see what tourism concern has to say about it.
  • Finally, because we offer something other companies can’t, the chance to travel with like-minded individuals all up for adventure. It takes a special breed of travel with us, and this just helps make our groups even more fun. From the moment you book you have access to our exclusive chat forums, and 12 weeks prior to departure you access your buddy lists, international lifelong friendships are formed by joining our trips.

Financial Security

When booking your holiday with Xtreme Gap Year you can have peace of mind that you are 100% protected in the very unlikely event of our financial failure.

We take our obligations to protect your payments very seriously . The UK regulations specify three ways of protecting pre-payments. These are by bonding to a body approved for this purpose by the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry; by taking out appropriate insurance; or by ensuring that all monies paid over by a customer are held in a trust account from which they may only be withdrawn on completion of the relevant contract.

In 2016 Xtreme Gap Year did a review of what would be the most appropriate cover for our clients, subsequently we have opted to use a client trust account. We deem this to be the most effective, secure and appropriate way to protect customers payments.

What does this mean?

Any payments you make to us are held in a separate account and are only released upon completion of your holiday under the authorisation of the trustee. Xtreme Gap Year, unlike many travel companies, pay suppliers in advance of your travel. This is beneficial for several reasons. In the unlikely event that our suppliers fail financially, we are still holding your money in trust and we are able to return this to you or use it to offer an alternative holiday if necessary. If Xtreme Gap Year was to fail financially, our suppliers would have already been paid, and you would still be able to carry out your holiday unaffected. In this unlikely case, we would still be holding your payment in trust as well.

Why do we view this as more secure than bonding?

Many companies claim that being bonded is the most secure form of payment protection. However we would argue otherwise. Bonding organisations such as ABTA and ABTOT have guidelines in place for their associated travel travel companies. They are asked to keep only 5% to 10% free asset ratio in place. This means, at any time, bonded travel companies are only required to have up to 10% of the cash in the company needed to cover all of their forward bookings. With a trust account you have 100% of the funds in place. Just because a company is bonded does not make them immune from financial failure. It also does not guarantee you will recover all of your money in the event of a bonded company going into insolvency. If the level of the bond is not sufficient to cover all of their liabilities, and they are not covered under shortfall insurance then you will not recover 100% of the cost of the holiday.
Furthermore with only 10% free asset ratio being required, we believe many other travel companies can take bigger risks with their clients forward payments. With a trust account you are unable to do so.

Bookings prior to December 2015

Previously in 2015 Xtreme Gap Year was financially protected through Topp insurance. This is another means of protecting customer payments. We have discontinued using Topp for 2016 because it did not represent the best value for our customers. Protection through insurance is expensive, and actually increases the risk to travel companies due to the extra overhead. Furthermore the requirements laid out by our insurance providers stated we needed to have enough capital in place to cover 100% of our bookings anyway. This was essentially the same financial burden as running a client trust account, so for 2016 we now operate a client trust account. This makes our holidays cheaper by approximately 2% and we pass on the cost savings to the customer.

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