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If you are planning or hoping to one day study abroad you have come to the right place! In January of 2022, I will be studying abroad in Florence, Italy for 5 months. I am beyond excited for this amazing opportunity, however as it gets closer to my departure date, the more things I find I have to prepare for. The list of things to do keeps getting longer and longer. 

For this week’s article, I will be sharing my personal tips and tricks on how I have been preparing for study abroad. Of course everyone’s study abroad experience is different so please cater these tips to yourself. 

Tip #1: Download Duolingo 

If you are in a similar situation like me and going to a country where they have their own native language, I highly recommend downloading the Duolingo app. Duolingo is a language-learning app that essentially helps you to learn basic conversational phrases and words. It’s very easy to navigate and fun to do when you are bored. They also have over 30+ languages to learn!

Especially when trying to immerse yourself in their culture, one way of learning is trying to speak their language. And in most cases, locals are excited to help you.

Tip #2: Pack Light

I would say I find this tip out of all the tips I have gathered the most difficult. And if I’m being completely honest I overpack my suitcase on every vacation. So we’re off to a great start!

When studying abroad it is so important to pack light because whether you like it or not, you most likely will be buying souvenirs, clothing, gifts, etc. Additionally, no one wants to lug around multiple heavy suitcases. 

I recommend packing basic versatile pieces of clothing that can be worn a bunch of different ways. Keeping in mind that neutral colors are your best friend.

Tip #3: Copy Important Travel Documents

Since you will be traveling a bunch while studying abroad, it is very important to make sure you keep track of important travel documents. This may include your passport or vaccination card. I highly recommend creating copies of these documents in the slight chance you lose them. You never know what can happen and it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Tip 4: Get Excited

Yes, making sure you don’t forget anything in your suitcase may be stressful. However, keep in mind that there are stores abroad where you can always purchase whatever you forget there. 

One day you’ll look back at these memories and forget about all the stress you felt. So there’s no point in stressing! Rather than stress, start getting excited for the best semester of your life.

These were just a couple of my tips for your future study abroad trip. Safe travels!

Livi Harmat

Kent State '23

Livi is a junior studying Fashion Merchandsing at Kent State University. In her free time, Livi can be found taking photos, reading, and going to trendy (but yummy) restaurants
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