Advice From Past Participants

Advice from Past Participants

What are the most important things you should know for your adventure abroad? Our own student travelers give you their best tips for studying and living abroad:

  • Pack light. (The #1 suggestion from all participants)
  • Experiment and be adventurous: Don't be embarrassed to ask about or try something new.
  • Walk wherever possible.
  • Budget wisely.
  • Avoid big groups of Americans.
  • Don't stereotype people or have a closed mind.
  • Women: DON'T be too friendly to men you do not know. If you're hassled by anyone, be firm and mean it. Try to ignore them.
  • Try everything new, especially the food.
  • When traveling independently, stay overnight in the nicer parts of town. 
  • Spend more money on experiences and less on gifts.
  • Get addresses of relatives and friends abroad before leaving.
  • Keep a money/passport pouch with you at all times.
  • Know how your assignments will be graded. You may be surprised how different it is from your experiences at CSB/SJU.
  • Keep a journal or a blog. And take lots of photos!
  • Don't expect anything before your arrival. You don't necessarily have to compromise yourself, but since you must adapt to another culture, your American attitudes must be malleable.
  • Know the difference between naïveté and open‑mindedness - it could be crucial.