Invaluable Tips For Study Abroad Students
Travelling is an essential part of learning that has proven to be extremely rewarding for students. Unfortunately, travelling has its own share of challenges so it would benefit you to be well prepared when it comes to spending some time abroad.
Are you planning to travel abroad for studies? Below are some travel tips and invaluable tips for studying to better your study abroad experience.
- Plan your trip early enough
International students should start planning for their study abroad preferably a year before their admission. This gives one ample time to send their applications to the prospective colleges, sit for the necessary tests, submit their diploma papers and other relevant documents and also apply for a visa.
- Double check your documents
Given that you will be visiting a foreign country, you will definitely require a passport and possibly a student visa as your identification papers. You should also consider getting an ISIC student ID. It helps you to receive discounted rates on things like accommodations, food, airfare and museums among others.
Apply for these documents several months before your travel since they may take substantial time to get processed.
- Book your flight 3 months prior to leaving
Purchasing your plane ticket early enough provides you the peace of mind that you deserve. Doing so gives you enough time to compare prices and also choose a convenient seat for your travel. Be cautious of the airline’s requirements for checking in and luggage to avoid paying extra fees or having to leave some of your items behind.
- Consult the experts
Are you uncertain of what you expect or what you are required to do? Talk to your study abroad school staff, friend or family members who undertook a similar trip. They can give you useful study abroad tips on the available scholarship programs to help cover your tuition fees or offer you valuable tips on how to bypass the minimum GPA requirements.
Most university departments are also very passionate about international students and can help you put all your worries to rest regarding your study abroad program expectations and requirements.
- Carry only what you need
As a study abroad student, you might be tempted to pack all that you require to live in a foreign country in your suitcase. Unfortunately, you will be wasting a lot of space on your luggage if you pack things that you would instead purchase in your host country. Carry only your most prized possessions and a few essentials. Remember the more stuff you bring, the more you have to look after.
If your new country experiences extreme winter seasons then layering is essential, not forgetting a light leather jacket for the rain. Ideally, identify the fashion trends in your host country to help you decide what you need.
- Grow your savings
If you are preparing to study, it’s always essential to save an extra buck whenever you can. Ensure that you have saved enough money in your bank account by the time you get to travel. You are more likely to require the money for your study abroad experiences more than you need it at the moment. Again, be cautious about your spending. Don’t blow away all your money on a single weekend trip and end up getting bogged down by credit card debt.
- Make the most of your study time
A common misconception with some international students is that “I don’t have to study hard since I’m only here for the experience.” You can never be more wrong. As much as you are there for the travel experience, studies should be your primary concern. Make a schedule, allocate enough time for each subject, learn various tips for studying, leverage group discussions and ask for help where you required clarifications. All these are useful study abroad tips that will help boost your success and give you a peaceful moment.
- Get a convenient phone plan
You will have a lot on your plate when moving to a foreign country. One major challenge will include getting a suitable mobile connection. You need to decide between getting a new SIM card and buying a new phone altogether. You might also be required to choose between postpaid contract-based mobile phone plans and getting a prepaid phone. Whatever option you pick, ensure that it’s affordable and flexible enough.
- Explore your new world
Students choose to study abroad for a number of reasons which includes meeting new people, exploring new places and getting exposure to new cultures. So have an adventurous spirit. Get out of your comfort zone, test your limits and don’t forget to take risks when having fun. Make memories and take pictures, a lot of them.
Ask about some of the travel tips that you might be missing out on. Remember when it comes to enhancing your study abroad experience, useful travel tips are as valuable as study tips.
- Be wise with your money
Most students have one thing in common; they lack enough money to throw away as they would wish. It’s therefore essential that you learn how to budget your money and have a backup plan in case you run out cash. A budgeting app will prove quite useful in helping you budget your food, transport, fun activities, and necessary expenses.
ATMs are quite common overseas. However, you should consider notifying your bank that you will be travelling to ensure that the ATM doesn’t eat your debit card when you arrive. Have a credit card as an ideal backup plan but be cautious of your expenditure to avoid nasty interest payments.