Studying abroad is an idea that pops up in our head at some point in life. In fact, if you’re reading this, it can only mean two things: either you’re very interested in studying abroad, or you have a lot of curiosity that will eventually turn into interest. And if you’re here, it’s also because you want someone to convince you and give you the push you need to start a new adventure, right? But let’s get to the point. Why are we so afraid of the thought of going to another country? Is it really so hard to study abroad? Does it involve missing my family and friends every night?
The reality is that studying in another country is not too easy at first, but no one has said that it is not rewarding. Either way, it’s a life-changing experience. It’s definitely something worth trying, although not everyone may be ready for it. Have a look at these top 5 tips to study abroad and see whether you should take on this life-changing experience!
Tip 1: Make sure you choose the right country
It’s pretty clear that it’s very nice to go abroad, but which is the perfect country for you? The list is infinite, so you need to start looking for a country that is compatible with you.
The first thing to consider is the job opportunities since it is not the same to look for a job in countries like Belgium, Germany or France, as it is to look for a job in Albania, North Macedonia or Ukraine. This is not meant to imply anything since you can go wherever you want, but you should know that this is a very important factor to take into account if you’d like to work part-time to help pay your bills. After all, knowing how to budget is key to surviving an experience abroad!
Therefore, it would be good to know in advance the working conditions in each country. That is to say, to find out about the salary, the length of the working days or even the holiday periods. In fact, it may seem insignificant to you, but having time for yourself and for exploring when you are in another country is crucial in order to start meeting people and adapting as quickly as possible. After all, you’re not going to another country just to study and work, but to learn, explore and, above all, live.
Tip 2: the language
The second most important piece of advice we give you is to make sure you know the language of the country. Needless to say, in these circumstances, your best weapon is going to be the language, since without it you can feel very lost. Even if the lectures you take are in your native language, it will help you socialise with students from other courses and communicate on a daily basis at shops, restaurants, etc.
Tip 3: Prepare yourself mentally
Okay, be very careful now because we are entering the topic of spirituality and psychology. If we enter a “philosophy mode”, we could say without fear of being wrong that studying abroad is like starting life from scratch but counting with all the experience you have acquired throughout your life. That’s why you are going to be your biggest source of support in this new adventure and, therefore, everything will depend on you, your attitude and your perspective.
One of the most important things is to feel at home, so you need to have your sanctuary, mostly known as your room. Regarding accommodation, it is best to start looking as soon as possible. Don’t worry, there are many pages that offer accommodation abroad for students or recent graduates, but it is always helpful to know where you will be living to prepare yourself mentally.
Tip 4: Socialise
Another good piece of advice we can give you is to socialise and connect with new students as soon as you get there, because, taking into account that you are building a new life from scratch, it is very important to feel comfortable in your group of friends. Even if you feel tired and not feel like going out, you need to always make an effort. Your study period may be limited but you need to make the most out of your time abroad! Plus, it’s also a good way to
learn more about the culture of the country you’re in, as just being able to think like a native will open up a whole world of possibilities.
Tip 5: Build your own network
Even if you’re only studying, you need to start thinking about your career too. Therefore, we recommend connecting with all your classmates on LinkedIn and start thinking about social media as a means to look for a job. Think about it this way: what if you can’t find a job but your colleague has this amazing opportunity you could be perfect for? If you really think about it, the next question you’ll be asking yourself after an experience abroad is: how do I get a job?