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Unexpected lessons you’ll learn while studying abroad

Unexpected lessons you’ll learn while studying abroad

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by Loren Howarth

As you prepare to embark on an opportunity of a lifetime, people will say that you’ll become independent, understand other cultures and essentially undertake personal change. But if you’re about to study abroad, there are some unexpected lessons that people don’t tell you about. Here are just some of them.

Living simply

If you’re anything like me, I always over pack. But living abroad will teach you differently, as you will only be able to pack the necessities. If you underestimate the space your items take up, you’ll find your jaw dropping at the overweight fee when you check in. Instead, you’ll learn how to pack simply, even if that means leaving some of your favourite clothes behind.

Appreciating home more

When studying abroad, you’ll probably want to try to eat as much foreign food as possible. But sooner or later, home cooked meals will be missed. And homesickness is bound to set in, even though you’re having the adventure of a lifetime. It may seem hard to deal with, but be sure to connect with friends and family as much as possible and find some delicious hearty recipes that you can cook for your temporary family.

Expecting the unexpected

While you can hope for a disaster-free holiday, something is bound to go wrong. Make sure you always have a plan B while exploring, as public transport can be unreliable especially if you don’t know how it works. It’s also a good idea to carry photocopies of identification in case you lose your wallet or it gets stolen.

Being a tourist in your own town

Studying abroad is a once in a life time opportunity, and many people brush off the idea of ‘touristy’ sight seeing.But don’t shy away,  go out and explore your new surroundings and see what is on offer. Even once you’ve explored known areas, don’t be afraid to venture into more unknown places as this is often where the real beauty of a city lies. From this experience, you’ll want to see more of your own home town and what secrets may be hiding.

Taking advantage of opportunities

Many opportunities will present themselves, and while it might not be something that interests you on paper, you should take advantage of what comes your way. Whether this be going on a city tour, undertaking a hike or even going bungee jumping, these new experiences will be ones you’ll never forget.


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