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Traveling Abroad as a Student: What To Know When You Go

So you have the opportunity as a student to study abroad for a few months, maybe even a year. It is an exciting chance to be able to learn about new geography, landscape, and community. This can be a great start for those who wish to one day become a digital nomad or frequent globetrotters, enjoying the local foods and learning all about a new culture. It can also open up various job possibilities if you’re interested in the opportunity to work permanently overseas. Here we will outline a small guide to new responsibilities when traveling. Some handy tips to help you to travel abroad as a student.

But, is there a catch? How easy will a trip abroad be? 

Before you start your journey, and even after you arrive, there are some things that need to be taken care of and are extremely important. Obviously you want to be sure you have your list checked off with everything you need to pack, but what about when you actually get there and start to work/live in this new, unexplored place? What do you need to be aware of for working and living?

Here we will outline a small guide to new responsibilities when traveling. Things like your student visa, bank accounts, and insurance are essential parts of setting up in addition to finding the local hangouts for a true experience of culture and cuisine. Some handy tips to help you get ready for your long trip.

Traveling Abroad as a Student

GETTING YOUR STUDENT VISA

In addition to your passport, getting your student visa is necessary when you are traveling overseas if you have any plans to work, which, for college students, may be likely. The process can be grueling and can take a lot of time to get through when applying for a visa, so it’s helpful to know how you can expedite your travel and student visa appointments to be sure you’re ready before your trip.

Another thing you need to remember with your student visa is that you need to be sure on your reasons for living and working abroad – for study, you have to make sure you are prepared to answer the security officer’s questions on why you need the visa, your plans for it, and when you plan on returning to your home country. 

Do some research on frequently asked questions and tips for applying stress free visa so you are prepared when submitting your application.

Traveling Abroad as a Student

OVERSEAS BANKING

It may be beneficial to consider banking overseas. You can keep your credit card and bank card from your home country, but every time you use it across countries, you may get slapped with international fees, and those can add up quickly! 

If you will be working while abroad, it may be beneficial to open up a bank account to deposit your checks and utilize your income within the country of your stay.  It is also in your best interest to contact the bank and find out their requirements before going in to open the account so you are prepared.

Be sure to have your passport, proof of where you are living (in that country), and possibly even another form of identification to give to the bank when opening your account. You will also need money to deposit. This is another time you can do some research to find a bank that may work best with the institution you currently use so that transferring money between accounts is simple.

HEALTH INSURANCE AND DRIVING PERMITS

Insurance will be something that might concern you. You want to be sure your health is covered globally, so be sure to contact your current insurance company to inquire about any overseas travel, and find out their policies regarding global coverage. In some cases, you may have to buy additional plans to be sure you are covered when you travel. 

Insurance will also be needed if you plan on driving at all – and you will need a permit to do so. Be sure to research the rules and regulations of the road, and get insurance for a vehicle if needed as well as an international driving permit if you plan to travel by car. 

If you are just planning to rent a car, most of the rental companies will offer insurance with the car when you purchase once you arrive. 

Traveling Abroad as a Student

EXPERIENCING THE LIFESTYLE

Along with all of that responsibility, make sure you get online and find out what local places to see when you visit. It is important, especially as a student, to engage yourself within the culture of your destination. Be sure to take some time off of working and enjoy an adventure or two. Frequently, your studies will be centered around experiencing the lifestyle of the country you are visiting anyway so it’s a great way to mix learning with fun. When you arrive, you can sharpen your language skills by asking where a good place to have a cup of coffee is, or what and where is the locals’ favorite restaurant. 

It is a wonderful experience to immerse yourself in another country through outdoor activities such as cycling, hiking, participating in the local events, etc. Traveling to a mountainous region? Buying mountain bikes for sale online would be great to indulge in exploring local surroundings. Another way you can experience the culture is to see if there are any celebrations or events that you can attend when you are living there as well. 

It is interesting to learn about why other countries have these events, and where they came from. Learning an alternative lifestyle will aid you in being a more well-rounded person, so take it all in if you can, and learn as much as you can. Many people do not get the opportunity to travel and work abroad, so be sure to reap the benefits!

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