Studying abroad really is an incredible opportunity. Not only does it give you a chance to see other parts of the world and experience different cultures, but it provides you with some time off from your ordinary life. Stepping away from the routine you’ve grown accustomed to and having to adapt to new surroundings is an important part of growing, and moving to the other side of the world for just a few months has provided me with so much more than I can explain.
From the outside, studying abroad can seem a bit nerve-wracking, but the experience is immensely beneficial. So, with less than a month left in my program, I want to share some of the things I wish I had known before I came.
Be Realistic When Packing
I was so worried about overpacking that I didn’t pack enough. But guess what— they have stores here in Australia! Make sure you have your passport, wallet, and cell phone. Don’t stress so much about the rest.
Save Up & Budget
You will spend more than you think. I made myself a budget, and I haven’t met my weekly goals once this semester. This is something you’ll just have to get used to.
Don’t Wait To Plan Trips
You can get the best prices on flights by booking early, so don’t hesitate. And if you wait too long, you might find yourself running out of time.
Don’t Expect To Go Everywhere
Australia is a big country. It’s about the same size as the US, and it’s fairly isolated from other countries, which makes weekend trips pretty difficult. But this just gives you more time to explore Sydney!
Overall, the best tip I can give is to be flexible. Plans will fall through, excursions may not meet your expectations, and situations might make you feel uncomfortable. A huge benefit of this experience is learning to be more open-minded. You’ll find yourself appreciating the little differences in culture that you might have been taken back by before. And after the semester ends, you’ll be a much more receptive and adaptable person.