Gap Year in China

Experience China in unique fashion with our Gap Year in China Programs. We have a number of excellent study abroad programs aiming to provide you with the experience of a lifetime.

Allow LTL to help you become fluent in Mandarin with our Full Immersion Gap Year program or you can even build your own China Gap Year if you wish for added flexibility. At the same time you have the chance to make friends for life whilst you are learning Chinese.

In total we have four China Gap Year programs, each providing a different and unique experience. No matter which program you decide on, you will experience China’s rich history as you study Mandarin in some of China’s finest locations.

Group of people outside the Summer Palace gates in Beijing

  • Become fluent in Mandarin
  • Experience a Gap Year in China
  • Full Immersion to speed up learning
  • Make friends worldwide
  • Discover China’s incredible history
  • Study abroad in a comfortable environment
  • Round the clock support from LTL
  • Unforgettable experience

    Unforgettable experience

    China – Explore this incredible country
    Friends – Make friends for life, from around the world
    Fluency – Study daily to help achieve fluency
    Flexible – Four excellent programs for you to choose from

  • Learn from the best

    Learn from the best

    Teachers – Fully certified and experts in teaching
    Enjoy – LTL classes are fun and engaging, not a chore
    Carefully selected – We make sure we employ only the best
    Experienced – Speed up your Mandarin progress, we know how it’s done

  • Everyday support from LTL

    Everyday support from LTL

    Reliable – We are here to help, talk to us and we strive to help
    Accommodation – Problem? Let us help resolve any worries you have
    Social Life – Want hints on where’s best to go? We’ve got your back
    Visa – We can help and advise with any visa issues

  • Explore China

    Explore China

    Unique challenges – Something for everyone
    Opportunities – Endless travel options to explore
    Social – Join our LTL Events each week with other students and staff
    Diversity – Modern day skyscrapers or ancient history, take your pick

China Gap Year Programs

Our China Gap year programs offer a wealth of fascinating immersion and cultural experiences. Each one provides something different. The four programs are listed below:

Full Immersion Gap Year

Experience and study the Chinese Language in the most exciting way imaginable. The China Gap Year in Beijing provides a unique experience which includes the first half of your adventure in Beijing followed by a trip to Chengde where your Chinese Language ability will increase hugely.

Beijing will kick start your Chinese adventure as you delve into the historic setting that is China’s Capital City. After experiencing one of the world’s biggest and most bustling cities you will then head north to Chengde which is a world apart from Beijing. No foreign contact, no English language used, everything will be in Chinese. This is full immersion and this is how your Chinese will rocket to the next level.

Three people hiking a wild section of the Great Wall

Gap Year in China – Starting Dates

Our courses are all flexible so if you wish to discuss the length of your program just contact us and we’ll gladly assist. Here are the prices and starting dates for the popular three month and six month full immersion courses in China. Bare in mind the starting dates are for complete beginners. Anyone with some Mandarin knowledge can start any Monday. 

  • 16 September 2019
  • 07 October 2019
  • 28 October 2019
  • 18 November 2019
  • 09 December 2019
  • 30 December 2019
  • 20 January 2020
  • 10 February 2020
  • 02 March 2020
  • 23 March 2020
  • 13 Apr 2020
  • 04 May 2020
  • 25 May 2020
  • 15 June 2020
  • 06 July 2020
  • 20 July 2020
  • 03 August 2020
  • 17 August 2020
  • 31 August 2020
  • 21 September 2020
  • 12 October 2020
  • 09 November 2020
  • 30 November 2020
  • 21 December 2020

Full Immersion Program Prices (Chinese Yuan)

Total Duration Beijing Chengde Price in CNY
3 months Immersion 6 weeks small group class 6 weeks 1-on-1 class 35,730
6 months Immersion 12 weeks small group class 12 weeks 1-on-1 class 67,830

Prices includes return train ticket from Beijing to Chengde. You will also receive Beijing and Chengde survival kit including SIM card, maps, rental bike, bank account and much more.

Immersion Program Accommodation Prices (Chinese Yuan)

Total Duration Beijing Chengde Price in CNY
3 months 6 wk shared apartment 6 wk homestay 25,967
3 months 6 wk homestay 6 wk homestay 31,054
6 months 12 wk shared apartment 12 wk homestay 47,160
6 months 12 wk homestay 12 wk homestay 52,560

The Beijing apartment included here is the small room option in our standard apartment. An upgrade to the large room or downgrade to the economy apartments are all possible. Contact us for more information.


The homestays in Beijing all include Breakfast and Dinner and in Chengde include all meals. Options for vegetarians, vegans and those with special dietary requirements can be provided.

In terms of accommodation, for complete immersion we do recommend the homestays. The ability to use your Mandarin with a family everyday will enhance your experience further. In Chengde you will stay at a homestay but in Beijing you have the option of this or the Shared Apartments. Likewise, you are welcome to find your own if you so wish. Let us know what you’d prefer when we speak to you.

Chinese Language Year

Study Mandarin abroad over two semesters in small group classes to vastly improve your language skills. Each week you receive 20 hours worth of lessons and each semester lasts 18 weeks, giving you a total of 36 weeks of intensive Chinese Language study. Our Shanghai school offers the same Gap Year Experience if you wish to be based there. Prices are the same but starting dates are slightly different.

What’s Included

  • Course Books and Study Materials
  • 20 hours of small group classes per week
  • Two 18 week semesters totalling 36 weeks overall
  • Survival Kit including Mobile SIM card and other useful items
  • 24/7 support from the LTL staff

Starting Dates

The starting dates of the Chinese Year Program for 2019 are as follows:

Spring 2020: 10th Feb. 2020 – 12th June 2020

Fall 2020: 21st Sep. 2020 – 22nd Jan. 2021

Each semester consists of 18 weeks of 20hr/week group classes.
(One Full Academic Year – 36 weeks)

Biking on the Great Wall of China

Chinese Language Year Program Prices

Program with no accommodation: 53,488 CNY
+36 weeks accommodation (Standard shared apartment – small room): 111,088 CNY

Upgrades to large rooms or homestay can be provided at an extra cost. If you’re looking to save a bit of money you could also consider our economy shared apartment

You can further enhance your skills by choosing to live in a Homestay at one of our Beijing families. Put your Mandarin to positive use daily by chatting about all things China with your family. Shared apartments are also available if you wish to live with fellow students. Please do talk to us if you wish to discuss further details regarding accommodation and your options.

Chinese and English Gap Year Program

This is the perfect option if you are on more of a budget and still want to learn Mandarin abroad. Overall the program lasts 22 weeks. Your first four weeks will be spent at our Beijing school where you will be placed in a small group class learning Chinese. You will get to know China’s capital city, it’s culture and history alongside informative and exciting lessons each day. You receive 4 hours of lessons per day for these four weeks.

After this you will go to a smaller city near Beijing to teach English for the remaining 18 weeks. An apartment will be provided and paid for and LTL also provide you with 2000CNY of spending money each month. A great option if you are on a budget.

What’s Included

  • Four weeks of small group classes and either a homestay or shared apartment based in Beijing
  • 18 weeks of English teaching in another city in China. This includes accommodation and 2000 CNY per month courtesy of LTL
  • Transportation from Beijing to the school where you are to teach
  • 24/7 support alongside access to the LTL student and teacher community
  • Airport pick up

Student in a car with his homestay family

Starting Dates

  • 18 November 2019
  • 09 December 2019
  • 30 December 2019
  • 20 January 2020
  • 10 February 2020
  • 02 March 2020
  • 23 March 2020
  • 13 Apr 2020
  • 04 May 2020
  • 25 May 2020
  • 15 June 2020
  • 06 July 2020
  • 20 July 2020
  • 03 August 2020
  • 17 August 2020
  • 31 August 2020
  • 21 September 2020
  • 12 October 2020
  • 09 November 2020
  • 30 November 2020
  • 21 December 2020

Chinese & English Program Prices (Chinese Yuan)

Homestay Program: 16,000 CNY (homestay accommodation, half board)

Shared Apartment Program: 12,500 CNY (Large Room shared apartment accommodation, en suite bathroom, no board)

Registration fee: 500 CNY

Build your own Gap Year

If you want to create a completely tailored plan for your China Gap Year, then this is the program for you. Contact our student advisors and they can help you come up with your perfect Gap Year which can include any of the following:

  • Study Chinese in Shanghai
  • Study Chinese in Beijing
  • Study Chinese in Chengde
  • Learn Mandarin on the Great Wall (Summer only)
  • Teach English in China
  • Internship in China

In total a China Gap Year spans over 36 weeks (two 18 week semesters). You have the ability to fill these weeks with whatever programs you wish. Maybe you’ll start by learning Mandarin in Beijing for 9 weeks before heading over to Chengde for full immersion where your Chinese will enhance rapidly. You will then spend your 2nd semester teaching English to Chinese children to complete your China Gap Year.

There is huge room for flexibility and you will experience Chinese Culture in a unique way with our program.

Man standing on top of a mountain in China

You can enhance your Mandarin further by staying with a Chinese Homestay where you will be given the chance to speak Mandarin to your family in the morning and at night over food. This is invaluable and quickens the speed at which you learn Chinese.

Ultimately accommodation is completely up to you and you are welcome to arrange your own.

That said, we are here to help and we can provide you with shared and large apartments as well as homestays.

Contact our student advisors using the Live chat function now to start planning your adventure in China.

For Chinese fluency and immersion in China, the first two programs listed will be right up your street. You will experience Chengde (not to be confused with Chengdu) where you will have zero contact with foreigners and base yourself right in the heart of “Real China”.

Chengde is the birthplace of modern Mandarin and is a recognised UNESCO world heritage site. Be aware though, life in Chengde is a world apart from Beijing.

If you aren’t up for complete immersion and no foreign contact, then this is definitely not for you. We mean this genuinely, but of course, if you have any questions we will happily assist you.

The Chinese & English program is more suited if you wish to learn Chinese and combine this with work experience as you study and work abroad. If you fancy more flexibility, then we offer you the opportunity to build your own gap year in China.

Students’ Experiences

What our students say...

Noah Testimony for LTL
★ ★ ★ ★ ★

At the school it is very easy to make friends and it is easy to meet the new students because everyone is in a similar situation and we end up discovering China together. I am really happy I came here for my Gap year.

Read More

Katherina Testimony for LTL
★ ★ ★ ★ ★

LTL organized a language course, accommodation and an internship for me. There are people from all over the world here I got to meet lots of interesting people. I am really enjoying my time here :)

Read More

Chalid Testimony for LTL
★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I found LTL very reliable throughout my son's gap year experience, a great school with a very motivated team. Karim loves LTL, he loves China, the people and the culture. I can say it was the right choice.

Read More

Frequently Asked Questions

I’m travelling to China alone and worried about how to meet people. Should I be worried?

Absolutely not. The LTL community is a very tight knit one.From teachers, students to staff, everybody speaks to everybody and friends for life are made at LTL.

We often arrange social activities and students meet most nights in the week generally. Don’t forget, many other students will be in the same situation as you! Likewise, our staff know Beijing inside out, so if you need any recommendations for places you wish to go to, they are on hand to help 24/7. In Chengde making friends is a different experience.

All your friends there will be Chinese. You’ll be treated a bit differently there as you’ll be a very rare breed.

This is a good thing however, you’ll often get invited to events and treated to dinner or drinks by your local friends. Of course we can help put you in contact with local groups, like football teams, hiking groups or music enthusiasts for example.

Will I be able to travel outside of class/work?

Of course. We generally organize trips for students every week and these are varied to cater for all needs. Beijing itself takes months to uncover and you are always discovering something new.

Likewise, there are so many other places to visit and with China’s efficient train service you are never far away from anywhere, even in a country of this magnitude. What about a trip to sunny Beihai? You are also a short flight from many other Asian cities such as Seoul, Tokyo and Bangkok.

How about living costs in Beijing?

Although more expensive than most Chinese cities (it’s the capital after all), Beijing is actually very affordable. Rent is the main expenditure in Beijing and as you may’ve taken up our accommodation package you are good to go.

Getting around in Taxi’s or using the Metro is cheap, the city is full of shared bikes which cost next to nothing and is a great way to explore the City. Food is cheap, if you want it to be.

Obviously there are plenty of foreign places but these are generally more expensive, though still perfectly affordable. Compared to the likes of other capitals like Sydney, Paris and London, Beijing is comfortable to live in financially.

Do we still study/work over Christmas?

Christmas isn’t actually a holiday in China. Therefore, most offices and schools remain open for business. Golden Week (October 1st-7th) and Chinese New Year (varied dates in February typically) are the main Chinese holidays.

That said, you are welcome to go home for Christmas if you wish. We’ll need to make some adjustments to your program. This is something you should discuss with us before coming to China.

I’m not sure which program is most suited to me, can you help?

We are always here to help.

You can use our Live chat feature below, or drop us an email.

We can chat through the study abroad programs and internships. Everyone is different and has their own preferences and goals. We are experienced in this field and know what is best for you so let us help and come and chat to us.

Can I be confident the Internship will be right for me?

We will spend time with you discussing your needs and wants regarding the Internship. It’s important for us that your China Internship suits you.

We will discuss the sort of role you wish to take, the industry and other factors and do our best to place you in just the right role.

Other Programs

  • LTL Semester


    Study Chinese with the LTL Semester Program in Beijing. Achieve fluency with LTL Mandarin School with our intensive semester program which lasts 18 weeks for a discounted price.

    Learn More

  • Multi City


    Study Mandarin in Beijing, as well as other cities and experience the diversity China has to offer. The LTL Multi City Program offers Mandarin in modern day China as well as historical and more cultured China.

    Learn More