So you have finally decided to take your future up a notch and study abroad? Congratulations! That’s a big step you take. Studying abroad offers better career opportunities, personal growth, and exciting new experiences. Here are some dos and don’ts you should know before you go on your big adventure:
1. Find an affordable hostel
Before you fly abroad, make sure that you already have a place where you can stay, as it might be hard to find affordable student accommodation on the spot. Check out different websites and applications that feature cheap hostels. And before you make a reservation, do a little research about the location. Ensure that it’s safe and accessible; a small amount of money you can save is worth nothing than your safety.
2. Learn the language
It’s not easy to live in a country where the language is utterly foreign to you. If you get lost, you might have difficulty finding your way back because of the language barrier. Take time to learn the language in advance, so establishing communication with the locals when you’re already there won’t be a problem.
Start with the primary or most common phrases, including greetings, self-introduction, and directions. Learning language applications such as Duolingo and Hellotalk can come in handy. But if you prefer real conversations, look for a native language partner who can help you speak your target language.
3. Connect to locals
While you are there, don’t hesitate to make friends with the local people. It will help you learn more about their culture. And that couldn’t be more exciting! Because you get exposed to the traditions of the other countries that are entirely foreign to you, it opens up your mind more. You’d discover why they like the food you dislike. And why they do things that are considered taboo in your country.
In your free time, go adventurous and hit the places where you can make friends with the native. Or when you’re out for a walk, strike a conversation. Don’t worry about not understanding each other; surely there’s someone out there who can speak the language you do.
4. Explore the country
Studying abroad gives you ample opportunities to explore that side of the world. You can go to the local market and buy some goods. You can also go to a food eatery and try some of their local dishes. And if you find something you like, you can share it with your friends and family, so they also get to experience it.
You can never go out of fun things to do abroad. You have to find them. If you’re a night person, there are night local markets that sell tons of different goods such as spices, street foods, dried fruits, organic vegetables, and souvenirs. Got zero ideas? Try watching travel vlogs. They usually feature unique local places and the fantastic things you can do there.
5. Cook your meals
Maybe cooking your meals is the furthest thing from your reality. In your country, you always prefer fast food or grab-and-go meals. And you’re one of those people who say, “does cooking egg count?” Abroad, you can take the opportunity of living on your own to learn something new. And it could be as simple as cooking your meal.
Home-cooked meals are always better than fast food because you know the ingredients. Make it a little healthier by adding some vegetables. You can also try the favorite dishes of the local people. Besides that, it’s cheaper because you can even prepare your meals for the whole week. Just get microwavable tubs, put them in the fridge, and reheat. Viola! You already have a delicious meal for the day!
6. Stay safe
So you have been in the country for a while, and you’ve gotten to know the people and community. Still, it’s best not to be complacent and always take precautions. Because as they say, there will always be bad people in good places. Lock your doors and windows tightly at night. And when you’re outside, be mindful of your belongings. If you fall victim to pickpockets, it would be a problem to replace your IDs since you’re abroad. And you might have an issue with the immigration without your IDs. So remember, always stay safe.
Studying abroad is a great privilege. It opens incredible opportunities and a new perspective of living. You might be a different person when you get back to your country. Although you might face some challenges, with determination, you sure can make it!