The Golden Rules of Studying Abroad

The Golden Rules of Studying Abroad

While studying abroad, there is so much to take in; everything from culture shock and homesickness to new friends and new adventures. It’s hard to know what to do when so much is happening at once and you might feel that you’ll miss out on something. Here are some golden rules that I think will make your time abroad feel more worthwhile.


You’re in a completely new place with foods, buildings, and people you’ve never seen before. Why not explore it as much as possible? What helped me get over my homesickness most was visiting museums on my first free day. It gave me an appreciation for just how historic the town was and how awesome it was that I could be there. Exploring helped me get over my homesickness, as well as made my trip much more worthwhile.

Put in what you want to get out

In the language camp classes, you have the opportunity to learn so much. But it really does just depend on how willing you are to put in the work. It’s not too difficult, just remember to pay attention, do the little bits of homework and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Even if you think you’re about to butcher the question, ask it anyways. The teachers are kind and helpful and you’ll learn more than what you asked along the way!

And finally, the golden rule anywhere:

Have fun!

You’re studying abroad, go out there and enjoy it! I understand homesickness, it hit me hard my first week, but do your best to push through because there is so much to explore, discover and learn. Your teachers and host family are there to help you and make your time abroad great, and your new friends will make new experiences less scary. If you aim to have fun no matter what, your trip will feel much more worth it.

If you keep these rules in mind as you take on your new adventure, it will allow you to make goals easier, eg. visit museums, try a certain food, etc., meet more people, overcome homesickness, and improve your trip.

Elias Harold, from Astoria, Oregon, is a Greenheart Travel First Time Traveler Scholarship recipientLearn more about Greenheart Travel’s scholarship opportunities to help you travel for a change!

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