7 Things to Keep in Mind Before You Study Abroad

Below are seven tips on studying abroad from someone who's done it!

  1. 1. Plan Early!

    We all like to think of ourselves as exuberant jet setters willing to hop on a plane at a moment's notice, but realistically, studying abroad takes some planning. Discuss your plans with your advisor, visit your university's study abroad office, and do some research into programs online.

  2. 2. Fulfill Your Requirements Early

    Ideally, you will be able to fulfill some of your general or major requirements while you are abroad but try to knock out as many of your required courses early, in case your program doesn't have the couses you need. 

  3. 3. Budget. Budget. Budget.

    Figure out what your costs while abroad will be and make sure that you have an emergency fund. There will always be unexpected expenses that come up while abroad. If you plan early enough, studying abroad can be made workable on most any budget. 

  4. 4. Cut Costs Where You Can

    This tip goes along with the previous one. Look into student discounts, apply for every scholarship that you can find, try Hopper for booking flights!

  5. 5. Make Plans for Your Emotional and Physical Health

    One of the greatest things about being abroad is immersing yourself in a completely new culture and environment. One of the scariest things about studying abroad is immersing yourself in a completely new culture and environment. It's normal to get culture shock and experience homesickness. Make sure that you have plans in place to reduce your stress and take care of yourself. 

  6. 6. Challenge Yourself

    You know what's usually different in different countries? Netflix! You know what you shouldn't spend your whole time abroad doing, watching Netflix!

    Studying abroad can be an incredible, once in a lifetime experience, don't waste it. Explore where you're staying, speak with locals, and try things that make you nervous (within reason). 

  7. 7. Learn a little of the language

    This applies even if the local language is English. Slang is helpful and can make it easier to blend in and adjust to the area. 

    If the locals don't typically speak english, try downloading duolingo before you go. The owl may be terrifying but the app can be helpful. 

Studying abroad doesn't have to be intimidating and you can cross it off your bucket list without disrupting your college experience.