If you never been out of the country before, don’t worry. I was in the exact same boat. The farthest I actually traveled in my whole life before going to Korea was flying from Madison to New Orleans, which isn’t much. If there is anything that a first time traveler may fear, it’s probably everything that may come once they realize their hopping on a plane to the other side of the world. If your a student studying abroad for the first time, then this blog will do you justice as I cover tips and techniques to making your travels convenient.
1. Choose a country, any country. With thousands of countries to select from, you can’t go wrong with any of them. As a matter of fact, if you already have a country in your mind, then it just makes the process a whole lot easier. The expenses might vary for every country, but as long as you’re experiencing a whole new culture; ultimately, that is what matters.
2. Research the selected country. There’s nothing like landing in a country feeling isolated and lost. Research the selected country and find out what its main attractions are. Also, keep in mind the language, food, currency, and even the outlets. If anything, most countries run on different outlets, so if you’re coming from the United States, make sure to buy some outlet adapters before you head out to your country.
3. Purchase a passport. A passport is the one and defying item that will allow you to go from one continent to the next. A United States passport cost about $110 and expires 10 years from the day you receive it. So that’s 10 years of traveling. Either way, you get your moneys worth and you can even flaunt it to all your friends and family. Important: Do not lose your passport when you are out of your country! See it is as your best friend. Without it, you may never get back home. So if you’re in Asia, don’t lose it, otherwise you may never see your family again.
4. Acquire a visa. Once you receive your passport, you’re not quite done yet finalizing your trip. Every country will require a visa in which will allow you to actually gain entrance into the country. You will probably have to contact your nearest consulate for your visa. The difference between a passport and visa is that a visa specifies what your purpose is for being in that selected country. Many travelers love to collect visas as they travel because it makes your passport look awesome.
5. Find a plane ticket. The most important part of your trip is finding a plane ticket and for most students, you’re probably looking for the cheapest ticket out there. If you definitely want to save money, try these sites out as they filter out all the cheapest tickets for you.
When you do plan on buying your plane ticket, keep in mind how long you’re staying in your country. If you’re planning to venture out to other countries, be sure not to purchase a round trip ticket as you would lose money. Now if you’re planning on coming back home as soon as you’re done, then make sure you make a round trip ticket so you don’t go staggering for a ticket later on. I was in this position and it was horrible.
To keep tips and techniques on studying abroad smaller and compact, I’ve divided this blog section into two parts. My next section will focus on how to finance yourself and perhaps some other interesting facts. If you have any questions on these tips and techniques thus far, feel free to let me know.