Gap Year Program

Extra Paid Courses Available

Outside of your placement commitments and requirements, you will have the opportunity to complete a number of professional or voluntary qualifications to give you that extra experience during your Gap Year/Term Abroad programme.

Timings/Schedules and prices are outlined below and can be arranged prior to your arrival. Payment for these courses or volunteering initiatives would be additional costs to your placement.

Diving Courses - Koh Tao Island

The courses would be run by Big Blue Diving, a company which operates out of Koh Tao island with 30 years of professional standards behind them and very high safety records. The school is an SSI Diving School . Please visit their website for further information or contact Jim at and mention that you are volunteering at ISS.

  • Non-residential on the Island of Koh Tao (recommended accommodation would be suggested to you)

  • Courses vary from a full-day Try Dive (Approx £65) or a 3 Days Open Water course (Approx £280) or a 2 day advanced Course (Approx £250).

  • Longer courses are available upon request

  • Board and Lodging and transport costs in/to Koh Tao are not included in the above prices

Elephant Sanctuary - Chiang Mai Province

This program takes place at Chang Land in a remote jungle location North of Chiangmai. The program is run very professionally by its American founder. Many of our ISS students have completed this course very successfully. Further information is available on their Facebook page.

  • 1 week residential Elephant Program in Chiang Mai province (North of Thailand – 2-3 hours flight from Koh Samui)

  • Includes Airport Pick-Up and Drop-off; Full Board and Lodging; 2 Day City and Safety Orientation and Cultural Tours ; All meals and transport at the Elephant Camp ; 5 days learning to look after and support the elephants in their natural habitat

  • A Team leader will support the Elephant Trainees throughout the week

  • Cost is Approx £500 per student (excluding flight to ChiangMai)

  • You will receive a Description of Service Letter at the end of your program.

  • The program does not run during the months of MARCH and APRIL because of the heat and the Smoke from paddy-field burning in that part of the country at that time of year.

TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) - Multiple Locations

TEFL courses normally run for 4 weeks and are fully immersive with practical teaching experience incorporated into the course.

  • The cost of the course is Approx £1200 and requires real commitment to complete the course but opens many opportunities thereafter.

  • The TEFL certificate is recognised throughout the World and accredited by the Asian College of Teachers as a teaching English as foreign Language document and administered by Destination TEFL (a course provider with a comprehensive course centered on practical teaching which we have worked with for a number of years and recommended many students to).

  • Board and Lodging and Flights are not included in the cost of the course.

Yoga Teacher Training - Koh Samui or Koh Phangan

Please discuss this further with us as there are a number of options on the islands but may vary depending on your wishes and requirements.