Last year around this time, I got accepted for a summer study abroad program. My fellow business classmates and I studied at La Salle Bonanova located in Barcelona, Spain. For those who are going to study abroad but do not know where to start, here are some helpful tips.
Since I went to Europe, I had to convert my US dollars into Euros. I would recommend ordering your money through your bank. You can convert your bills at the airport but it costs a lot more compared to the bank.
While you are at the bank, make sure to tell your bank how long you will be out of the country. I would recommend telling your bank twice; once when you convert your money and a couple of days before you leave. Even though I told my bank, the bank froze my account because I withdrew money in Barcelona. I had to make a long distance call to tell my bank it was me.
You need a converter/adapter for all of your electrical appliances. I got mine at Target and it didn’t blow up or break, so I like it. Don’t be Ashton Kutcher in Just Married.
Learn the Language
Even though I took Spanish in high school, I forget everything I learned. I had this expectation that I would be ok to go to a foreign country not knowing their language; I was wrong. Definitely learn the basics before you travel to your destination country.
Travel Size Carry On
I had a carry on bag just in case my luggage got lost. I brought three sets of clothes, travel size toiletries, converter, chargers and my makeup. I would recommend a material duffel bag so when you travel back, you can place it flat in your suitcase. Whatever airline you go on, make sure it fits the weight and size requirements.
Here are some duffel bags that I like and would bring as a carry on:
This sounds silly, but figure out what the locals wear before you pack. Tourists stand out and are easy targeted picked pocketed victims. For an example, tourists wear tennis shoes so I brought a pair of Birkenstocks to walk around in.
Last but not least, you need a passport to travel abroad. My college has a place on campus to get your passport. If your university doesn’t offer this, check out your local post office to get yours.
I hope everyone that is traveling abroad this year has an amazing time! Make sure to visit all of the historical sites wherever you go. If these tips helped you, let me know! Also if you are going to study in Europe, you should visit other countries! My friend and I flew to Rome, Italy after our program was finished. We had a travel agent that booked our flights, but a lot of our friends said RyanAir had cheap flights. Have a great day everyone!