How to Prepare for Studying Abroad

 Ever heard of the saying: “If you fail to prepare, prepare to fail?”

Well, you don’t have to worry about that.

You’re already on your way to success because you’re here…reading this post.

At IEC Abroad, we help thousands of international students get onto further education programmes, so we’re the perfect people to come to for advice.

If you want to have a fun, educational and stress-free experience studying abroad, follow these 6 simple tips.

1. Research your new home

So you’ve chosen where you want to study. You might even have a place on your course already.

Whichever stage you’re at, it’s a good idea to do some research on the country you’ll be moving to. And when you’ve done that, dig deeper and research the city you’ll be living in.

You’ll want to know more about the culture, people and language so you can prepare for all the differences between your world and theirs.

Make your research fun. You don’t have to read boring guides or snoozefest travel books. Why not watch a documentary or a movie that’s based in that country? You could even try listening to a podcast so you can practice your English skills.

The more you know now, the easier it’ll be to feel at home in your new city.

2. Get organised

 Travelling is stressful when you’re going on holiday for a week, so imagine how hard it is when you’re moving to another country semi-permanently!

The trick to getting through it painlessly is to get organised:

  • Make sure you have a valid passport with an expiry date that’s more than 6 months away.
  • If you need a student visa, be sure to check the country’s requirements and apply for it way in advance.
  • Book your flight tickets early so you can save a bit of money.
  • Start looking for travel insurance quotes so you can find the most cost-effective option.
  • Check your baggage limit before you start packing to avoid paying crazy fees at the airport.

Getting organised will make The Big Move much smoother. And instead of worrying about formalities, you can spend your time daydreaming about the people you’ll meet and the places you’ll go.

3. Work out your housing options

Look into your housing options as soon as you can. The best accommodation tends to go quickly, and you don’t want to end up in a place you’re unhappy with.

You should consider living with other university students so you can make the most of student life and meet lots of new friends. It’s all part of the experience.

4. Make friends before you move

We’re not living in the 70s anymore.

Lucky for you, the existence of Facebook, LinkedIn and other social media platforms means you can make friends with your classmates before you even leave home.

Do a quick search for people who are already studying at your university or school. Ask them for tips and try to get answers to all your burning questions.

A bit of friendly social media stalking will give you a good idea of what student life will be like.

Another idea is to contact your university or school to see if they have a buddy system. Many do, and the system will pair you up with a student who’s been assigned take care of you when you arrive.

 5. Spend time with your family & friends

Now for the sad part (but you knew this was coming).

Chances are, you won’t see your friends and family for a while. Try to prepare for that by spending as much time as you can with them before you leave.

Cherish those small, fleeting moments that you usually take for granted. Hang out with your friends a little more than you usually would. And hug your parents more than you ever have.

Before you leave, set up a Skype or WhatsApp account for the people you want to talk to regularly.

With a little help from technology, it’ll feel like they’re with you the entire time.

6. But most of all…

Get excited!

Whether you’re going to study at one of the top universities in the UK, or you’re venturing out to Ireland, the USA, Canada, New Zealand or Australia, you have so much to be excited about.

Going to study abroad marks the start of a new chapter filled with fun, friendship and fantastic job opportunities.

So once you’ve done all the dull paperwork and packing, get ready for the adventure of your life.

If you’re ready to start your academic journey abroad, contact our admissions office so we can find the perfect university or language school for you.

Email or call +441612334295

Want to know more?

Read our information-packed blog posts:

Top Ways to Make Student Life in London Even Better

Applying for Scholarships in the UK

10 Benefits of Studying Abroad