- Start the process early. Studying abroad isn’t something you want to just rush into. Plan ahead to make sure you’re making the right decision on everything from where to study to where you want to live. You’ll feel much more prepared if you take time to sort through all your options.
- Start being more open minded. Being open to trying everything abroad is one of the best things you can do. Start preparing to be that open minded now. Try new things at home to get you used to leaving your comfort zone. Once you are abroad having an open attitude towards things will also assimilate you more into the culture of your host country. You can also impress your friends back home with stories of all the cool new things you tried!
- Attend the pre-departure events. Before you go abroad there are going to be tons of exciting ways you can meet people that are also going abroad either to the same place as you or the other side of the world. Whether it’s at an orientation or a pre-departure social you’ll be able to learn about the cultures, maybe try some new foods, and most of all just get excited to go!
- Follow your school’s Study Abroad Office on social media. They’re just as excited that you’re going abroad as you are. Send them pictures, tag them in posts – they love to hear about the students they send abroad, and they love to post tips and tricks to make your study abroad experience the best it can be. (This is your cue to go follow our social media @TowsonAbroad)
- Figure out the phone and money situation ahead of time. In most cases it’s easiest to get a pay-as-you-go phone in the country you’re studying in but if you just can’t let go of your iPhone make sure you get it unlocked for international use by your service provider. Also make sure you call your credit card company to let them know you’ll be using your card internationally so they don’t cut you off when you’re trying to buy gelato. Lastly, never EVER (unless it’s an emergency) exchange currencies at the airport. You’ll get charged an absurd service fee! Keep an eye out for currency exchanges with free student rates when you’re abroad.