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Studying abroad is more than just a dream. It’s your chance of a lifetime to gain new experiences in life. But it can also be a daunting task as an international student in a foreign country. In this blog, we tell you all about the how-to and the what-to in this guide to studying abroad.
As you plan for your journey abroad, you obviously need to pack all the essentials. So, here are a few helpful tips on what to pack when studying abroad-
- Be smart while you pack. Always consider the weather of the destination country and pack accordingly.
- There are limitations on the weight of your luggage, so make sure to check that before you start.
- Another quick tip for packing rolling your clothes rather than folding them helps you in saving some room in your suitcase for the other things and keeps your clothes wrinkle-free.
- Be sure to add some just-in-case clothes to your study abroad packing list.
While there are several benefits of going abroad, always keep your safety first. Studying in the USA is safe if you are always aware of your surroundings. Avoid walking alone at night to your accommodation or any place unless you are with a group of friends. Use local transport even if it hurts your pocket a little! Keeping an extra key to your house or your room is also one of the safety precautions. Lock your bags and keep a spare key.
It is always great to have emergency contact numbers handy. Along with saving them on your phone, write them down in a small diary or a notepad in case you lose your phone.
Get a SIM card or a phone
If you have an unlocked cell phone, you can buy a SIM card from a local store and switch. Even though this is the easiest option, it’s possible only if your phone is locked. Your next best bet is to go to a local electronics store and buy a cheap phone. Here, you will be able to get a SIM card easily. But chances are that this won’t be a smartphone. So, if you’re willing to spend a little more, you could also buy an international plan for your existing SIM card.
What to wear
As mentioned in the study abroad packing list, wear clothes according to the weather. Wear comfortable clothes and footwear while traveling. You can always dress to impress while being comfortable. You can try wearing what the locals prefer and make sure that your clothing blends in with the locals. This will help you not feel like a tourist. Always carry a photocopy of your passport. You never know where and when you might need it!
Make new friends
While you’ll be living abroad, the friends you choose will be the closest thing to family. They will have your back when no one else does. So, get out of your apartment, and meet new people.There are many ways to do this. To start off, meet people at your first college orientation and join a few student clubs. You could also get yourself a roommate, work somewhere part-time, or go on solo walks (or to concerts) and strike up conversations with random people!
Explore your surroundings
It is always enriching to explore new places around you. Take new paths to your college every day. This will help you explore new cafes and hangout places to relax with your friends. Connect with the locals and make new friends. Part-time jobs do so much more than just helping you finance your education. With a part-time job at a safe and trustworthy place, you could make great friends and even leverage it to network with people around you. When you study abroad, your friends are your family and your support system.
Manage your finances
One of the most important tips in this guide to studying abroad is learning to manage your finances. Studying abroad is a great experience because it makes you independent. You learn to buy groceries, pay your taxes and your monthly bills and save money. You can have all the fun in your studying abroad journey even while being mindful of how much money you spend.
A few ways you can do that include-
- Preparing meals at home
- Finding an accommodation that does not burn a hole in your pocket
- Using student discounts
- Finding free activities
- Looking for cheap ways to travel
- Having a monthly budget and sticking to it, and more…
Juggle your academics
Another golden piece of advice in this guide to studying abroad is that you will need to juggle your academics with various other things, and it can be hard. You definitely want to enjoy your college life with your new friends when you study abroad. You will have to juggle between your part-time job, your studies, and your social life. You can work a few hours and have all the fun on weekends while focusing on your academics on the weekdays.
Try making and following a timetable. It helps a lot to keep track of all the things you want to do so that you don’t miss out on anything and are on time with your commitments. Punctuality is a virtue you’d soon realize that is often forgotten but can truly take you a long way!
The tips mentioned in this guide for studying abroad don’t even scratch the surface of the whole exhilarating experience. But we truly hope that this guide helps you in your journey and stay abroad.
Want to check out more blogs full of study abroad tips? Take a look at some DIY ideas for a cozy dorm room, the many benefits of working part-time while you study abroad, the various International student accommodation options, and more!
Q1. How can I cut my costs in accommodation and utilities when studying abroad?
Answer – A great way to save up on accommodation and utilities is by choosing to live on campus. However, if that is not an option for you, look for shared apartments in areas near your university.
Q2. Do universities provide part-time jobs for international students on campus?
Answer – Yes, most universities have various on-campus job opportunities for students. You can contact the concerned authorities in your university to apply.
Q3. How can I interact with new people and make friends in a new country?
Answer – Most universities have various clubs and events to encourage interaction. Take time to join these events and clubs, depending on your interests. You are sure to find like-minded people and make friends.