Top Ten Things to do Before You Study Abroad

By abroad we don’t mean “a broad” we mean overseas dummy! Here are some tips to get you on your way.
1) Learn about your destination
From climate to local customs make sure you do some reading. The last thing you’ll want to do is bring a hamburger to India or something crazy like that.
2) Get your Passport and Visas (not the credit card!)
Make sure neither expire while you’re away and make sure you don’t accidentally grab your brothers passport from mom (Trust me I know from personal experience). In fact most people recommend having it active for at least 6 months after you anticipate your return.
3) Tell your bank and credit card companies
Call them to get them jealous of your adventure and while you’re at it, make sure they don’t cut you off as soon as you land and try to grab a real bite to eat after the awful airplane food.
Also, your bank might have partner banks that wont charge you insane ATM fees.
4) Go see the doctor
Get the vaccinations you’ll need for the area and make sure you have enough of any prescriptions you need while you’re away.
5) Have enough money
Whether you save for two years from your gig at the late night burrito shop or hit up your rich uncle, make sure you budget and bring enough to get you by. There are quite a few scholarships available for study abroad programs too.
Be sure you know the conversion rate and how much it costs to get by. Here’s a great cost of living calculator. Dont go crazy in the “duty free” shops!
6)Make sure you get credit from school
Double check with your advisors to ensure that you’re going to get credit for your adventure. Some programs are very strict and it would really suck if you got back and had to get on the Van Wilder 8 year plan.
7) Forward your mail
Most schools will forward your mail for free to any domestic address while you’re away. Check with the mail distribution department. You wouldn’t want that scholarship check to be stuck in your school mailbox while you’re out of the country.
8) Get travelers health insurance
Make sure your health insurance will cover you while you’re away. You can also buy special additional travel coverage. It will probably come in handy.
9) Buy a round trip ticket
Even if you fall in love with the place or don’t know for sure when your going to be back, you’ll save a bunch of money and stress with that return ticket in hand. Get one that you can adjust the return date with no or minimal fees.
10) Have a great time!!!
Don’t let top ten lists stress you out for your experience, get out there and see the world! And if your feeling up to it (and have an internet connection out there), post some pictures on our Facebook page! We’d love to live the experience through you!
Feel free to post comments about your abroad experience.
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