Chances are good that you’re at least vaguely familiar with the concept of a “gap year” — time off between schooling and work, something that is quite common in the United Kingdom.

Even Malia Obama recently made headlines by postponing her own college experience for a year.

While the idea of a gap year has historically been the provenance of the young, if you haven’t taken a gap year (or have never contemplated the idea), now might be your golden opportunity.

According to a recent study conducted by Hostelworld, taking a gap year — defined as a one-year break away from school and/or work — is an emerging trend in the United States. The concept is gaining popularity as younger generations embrace the notion of taking time off to travel.

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