5 Alternatives to Studying Abroad if You Didn’t in College

5 Alternatives to Studying Abroad if You Didn’t in College

You often hear about how studying abroad in college changed someone’s life, or how it was their favorite experience during their four years. Sometimes it seems like everyone around you was able to study in another country, but in reality, only 10% of students in the United States go study abroad during their time in university. It can be cost prohibitive and difficult to find time in your class schedule to take a full semester away from required courses, and it may feel like you’ve missed out on a unique experience. However, the opportunity to live overseas does not end after graduation! There are a number of ways to have just as an immersive experience in a new country – if not more! – as a study abroad program. Whether you want to live with a local family, find a new town to call home, or brush up on your language skills, consider having your “abroad” experience outside the cost and time constraints of a university!

Become a Digital Nomad

Working remote gives people a new kind flexibility with where and when they work – but have you ever considered how flexible you can be? Becoming a digital nomad allows you to continue your remote job while moving to a new country! For most programs, you are provided a coworking space with other digital nomads, WiFi, and other office necessities. If you’ve ever wanted to take your laptop across the world with you, but weren’t sure where to start, consider a digital nomad program.

Maddie Erikson being welcomed by her host family while teaching English in a homestay in Italy

Live in a Homestay

Is your desire to travel driven by your curiosity of local cultural and language? Living with local host family is a great way to call a new town your home and practice a new language! Our Teach in a Homestay program allows you to live in a different country while tutoring your host family in English for a few hours a day. These opportunities really allow you to make meaningful connections and share in local everyday life by getting to know your family through casual, conversational English lessons and practicing the local language.

Get TEFL Certified Abroad

If the “study” aspect of “study abroad” really appealed to you, there are still ways to learn new skills in a classroom setting while living abroad. Many TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certification courses are offered abroad and may cover accommodation during the duration of the class. This certification is a requirement for most teaching positions abroad and is a great way to open the door to endless paid work abroad! Depending on the country you take the course, there may be positions available as soon as you complete your certification.

Teach English Abroad

Have you ever thought about living abroad for an extended amount of time? Or possibly making money while experiencing a new country? Teaching English abroad is a great way to accomplish both of these! There are countless positions around the world looking for English speakers to teach in local schools. Most of the jobs do not require a degree in education and are open to degree holders of any subject. That makes it easy for many to people to immerse themselves in a new culture while securing a full-time job!

Work Abroad

If you are looking for a more independent experience abroad and teaching doesn’t appeal to you, there are always seasonal jobs and internships available in different countries! These opportunities typically provide you the flexibility to travel and experience your new surroundings while making a sustainable salary. Many of the positions open are fun, entry-level such as working in local bars, hostels, or hotels where you’ll meet other travelers!

2 thoughts on "5 Alternatives to Studying Abroad if You Didn’t in College"

  1. Kori says:

    Good afternoon!

    I am interested in learning more about working abroad! Do you need to be under a certain age or any other requirements?

    Thank you so much,


    1. Sara Thacker says:

      Hey Kori! We have a lot of programs for working abroad and each has their own requirements for eligibility. At a basic level, you just need to be 18 and of a certain citizenship (like the USA, Canada, etc.) that qualifies for the visa for that country and program. Email us at travelabroad@greenheart.org and we can help get you started with the process and answer your questions!

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