You go to school, you go to college, you leave college and get an average boring job and then what? You find yourself in the same routine day in day out. For years you convince yourself that you’ll get a better job, you’ll go to university and maybe even travel the world but you never do. I studied public services at college for 4 years and they were quite possibly the best years of my life but then that ended and it was time to get a job. My plan was always to join the military but I wasn’t ready for that and I was never too keen on university so I ended up getting stuck in a dead end job for 4 years. Don’t get me wrong I made some incredible friends and had a great time but it wasn’t what I wanted, I wanted to travel and see what was beyond the four walls I worked and lived in, so I did. I met my boyfriend Ben in college and we both always knew we wanted to travel but neither of us ever imagined we would have the money for it. But we saved, we worked hard and we moved in with my parents to cut living costs. We made sacrifices of not going out with friends and not buying the latest things but when you finally get to where you’ve always dreamed of being you finally realise it was all worth it in the end.
I would finish work and spend hours looking at tours and ordering travel brochures but never had the courage to pursue it. Around February last year, we decided to just go for it so we put a deposit down on UltimateOz package on Gap360 and if we changed our minds we would have only lost a small amount of money but it was the push we needed. We slowly went through the process of applying for our working holiday visas, sorting our insurance and the scariest part booking our flights. Around August everything was sorted and we were all set for our trip of a lifetime. We had a facebook group with people who were also going to be on our intro week and we would discuss questions we had such as how much money were we talking, which insurer to go with, just things like that, but it was reassuring knowing people were in the same boat as you. The days flew by and it was getting serious, we handed in our notices, sold our cars and packed up our bedroom. The hardest part was saying goodbye to our families but they were all so proud and happy that we were finally doing what we had always wanted.
Departure day! The group chat was on fire, everyone was super nervous and we were all wishing each other safe flights and we’d see them all soon which was strange because we’d all been speaking for the past 4 months but had never seen each other. Now it was our time we arrived at the airport and said a teary goodbye to my parents, checked in our oversized backpacks and we were on our way. The flight was an experience considering my previous longest flight was a mere 4 hours. The first 8 hours to new Delhi wasn’t too bad however the around the clock curry wasn’t good. We then had a 4-hour stopover in new Delhi before our final flight to Sydney. We boarded our connecting flight to Sydney and we were almost there.
Touchdown! We finally landed at Sydney airport, I was a bit nervous about going through customs after watching stupid amounts of episodes of nothing to declare and border force but it was a breeze, we collected our bags and jumped in our transfer to the hostel. It was an incredible feeling the sun was shining, the city was beautiful and I just couldn’t believe the overwhelming feeling that I was actually here with Ben by my side. We arrived at the hostel and started meeting people from the group chat, we all got on really well and had an amazing first week with UltimateOz. I highly recommend doing it if you’re a first-time traveller. Not only was I eased into travelling through the intro week I also made some friends for life. After the first week, some of us stuck together and travelled up the east coast while the rest departed ways. Although I’ve bumped into a lot of them along the way again which was really nice and have made plans to meet when we get home.
Now I’m 5 months into my adventure and it has been an incredible experience. I’ve grown so much as a person. I’m more confident, I’ve done things I couldn’t have dreamed I would achieve and I still can’t believe I’m here on this amazing adventure. So just remember when somebody tells you that you can’t or you think you can’t achieve your dreams, you can! You just have to take that leap of faith and grab the opportunity. The world is a beautiful place and it’s waiting to be explored.
Round up of costs –
UltimateOz – £500 (Now £539+)
Australian working holiday visa – £220 roughly
Insurance – £160 for the year
One way flight LHR – SYD – £620
Extra money – £4000