Study Abroad? Top 20 Need-To-Knows To Travel Smart
Hello Readers. Thanks for getting onboard with Dolphin Education Consultancy.
As the impact of COVID is gradually reducing, the universities around the world are
opening their doors for the international students who wish to study abroad.
Studying abroad is so much fun due to the various benefits that studying in such an
environment offers to the students.
As an international student, it can be a bit overwhelming to study abroad, especially
if it's your first time in a foreign country. Recent studies show that the majority
of students who choose to study abroad are under graduates!!
We spoke to a number of students who are currently studying abroad (both under
graduates and post graduates). We asked them what they wished they’d known before
travelling to study abroad.
From visa’s and health insurance to bank accounts and tuition fees, we have a lot to
consider before deciding to study abroad. We have broken down all these processes
into a step by step guide.
Here are the top 20 things you need to make sure before making the leap across the
1. PLAN YOUR FUNDING AND SCHOLARSHIPS:
- The very first step in your study abroad
process is to make sure that you have the finance to fund your degree.
- Also, you will need to provide evidence that
you can cover your course fee as well as living expenses while studying
- Estimate how much you will spend during your
time abroad. If you don’t have enough money to fund you have other options
available such as educational loans, exchange programs, international
2. SEARCH OUT ALUMNI / LOCAL CONNECTIONS:
- Let your plan to study abroad be known to
all your family and friends. Tell them exactly to which location you are
- Any of them might have their friends /
relatives out there which could end up being invaluable for you.
- If possible, talk to the alumni of the
study abroad programs to get an idea of successes and struggles from
3. ORGANISE ALL THE NECESSARY TRAVEL DOCUMENTS:
- To study abroad, you will need a
passport, visa and many other documents. Organize all the required paper
works in advance.
- Visa type may vary based on the choice of
your foreign country, university and course.
- The visa process may take a while to fill
out and several weeks to arrive. So, give yourself plenty of time to
apply and get a visa.
- Check the expiry date of your passport
and apply beforehand if required.
Let’s see about these scholarships in detail.
4. LIST OUT ALL THE NECESSITIES NEEDED ABROAD:
Scotland’s Saltire Scholarship
- Studying abroad comes with few
discomforts as you need to adjust to new terrain.
- To avoid this, you need to make plans for
all your basic necessities after arriving abroad like adjusting to the
local foods, medicines that are not available, etc.
- Notify your home bank account about your
time away from the country.
- Carry some currency of your destination
country with you to spend for the first few days till you set up your
student bank account there.
5. PACK SMART:
- Before you start packing to study abroad,
write down a list of everything you think you will need. First priority
should be your documents.
- It is easy to over-pack though, so list
out only important things which you will not be able to get / overpriced
in a foreign country.
- Remember you will get student discounts
for certain items with your student ID card.
- Make sure that your wardrobe is in
accordance with the culture and climate of your study destination as few
countries prefer conservative looks and others don’t.
- Be sure to pack some home comforts with
you like photographs, books or any other memorabilia.
6. DO A COMPLETE PHYSICAL CHECKUP:
- Before leaving for your study abroad
experience, get a complete health check up and make sure that you are up
to date with all your vaccines.
- Ask your doctor whether there are any
specific recommendations or additional vaccines prescribed for your
- Ensure that you will get the regular
supply of your prescriptions abroad. If not, carry alternative
prescriptions from the doctor which will be easily accessible while you
7. BE READY TO ACCEPT A NEW CULTURE:
- Learn the local customs as much as
possible before you head to study abroad. Be appreciative of the people
in the new environment.
- Even though you may know the language of
the country you are going to study, there are still chances for
- Take up online language courses and
tutorials and keep yourself updated on the country’s accent.
8. SORT OUT YOUR ACCOMMODATION
- When you choose to study abroad, you have
to get your accommodation sorted out before landing there.
- The first preference to look out is the
university itself as they offer house guarantees to their students. It
may be either self-catered or catered.
- Another choice is to rent a room from a
private landlord. You can opt for private accommodation after your first
year because you would be well aware of the area you live in.
- If you choose for private rentals, do
check all the facilities provided by the landlord before signing the
9. RESEARCH YOUR STUDY DESTINATION:
- One of the most exciting parts about
going to study abroad is that you get to explore a new place, new people
and new culture.
- There is no harm in really getting to
know your way around the country’s customs, law, weather, etc.
- Look up the landmarks and tourist
attractions over there and plan for weekend trips with your friends to
really maximize your time.
- Understand direction-inclined apps like
google maps, etc. as well as manual maps in that region to find your way
in an unknown region.
10. FIGURE OUT PUBLIC TRANSPORTATIONS:
- You need to ensure that you are well
aware of the kind of transportation system used in the country before
- This will help you to get details in
terms of time, cost and distance between the places in that country that
you may want to visit.
- Sometimes yearly student passes for the
bus/train may help you save the cost. If yes, invest in such passes with
11. GET YOUR HEALTH AND TRAVEL INSURANCE COVERED:
- If you already have any health insurance,
check whether it covers while you are abroad.
- For few countries, you may have to pay
the health surcharge as a part of your visa application.
- Don’t forget to take a travel insurance
which covers the extra expenses which may occur due to loss of your
belongings, cancelled travel plans, serious illness or injury,
12. SET UP A STUDENT BANK ACCOUNT:
- Having a local bank account is a good way
to avoid foreign currency exchanges and makes it easier for you to pay
- Check with your home country branch
whether they have services in the place where you study abroad.
- If not, open a new account in the
destination country. Check for the banks that provide student bank
accounts to international students.
- Use prepaid cards until you have your own
bank account as carrying cash is not safe.
- To open a bank account, you may need to
produce the following documents.
Address proof – both in your home country as well as destination country
Student ID Card
13. CONSIDER FINDING A PART TIME JOB:
- Part time jobs are a great way to earn
some extra money and develop your communication skills in the new
- And yes!!!! You may get an employee
discount depending on your job.
- But do not rely on your part time jobs
for your expenses.
- Keep yourself updated on the rights and
options you have to work in the foreign country. This includes working
hours, pay, etc.
- Make sure that you have all the legal
documents to support your part time work.
14. KNOW THE LAWS AND STICK TO IT:
- Be sure to know and obey the laws of the
host country for common activities like alcohol consumption, driving,
- Even a minor incident can create a lot of
trouble for the foreign students.
- You should know the nearest home country
embassy and keep its phone number handy as well in case you are in
15. STAY CONNECTED WITH YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS:
- Figure out low-cost international call
providers in the foreign country while you study abroad.
- Alternatively, you can use Android /IOS
apps like Skype, Zoom, WhatsApp, etc.
- You can plan your Wi-Fi and internet
options depending on the type of accommodation you chose.
- For private rentals, the monthly bills
may include the internet charges.
- By staying in touch with your family and
friends, you can go a long way in staving off homesickness.
16. HAVE EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS:
- It's really a good idea to include the
numbers of trusted contacts both from your home country as well as in
your study destination as a list of emergency numbers in case you need
- Inform your kith and kin priorly that you
are providing their contacts for emergency purposes.
- Prior leaving to study abroad, find out
how to contact the police, ambulance or any other emergency services in
the new country.
17. CARRY THE SOFT COPY OF ALL YOUR DOCUMENTS:
- Even though hard copy is more important,
it is better to save the soft copy of all your important documents in
cloud or google drive.
- Make sure you can access it easily with
any of the devices.
- Also, make sure you carry your student id
card with you all the time as will be the instant savior if you get into
18. MAKE BACKUP PLANS:
He who fails to plan already plans to fail
- However, everything may not go as per
your plan in a completely new country. So, allow your plans to be
flexible enough to accommodate changes.
- Keep an open mind about your upcoming
adventure. That’s the fun part while you study abroad.
19. SAVE FOR EMERGENCIES:
- It's really important that you watch the
way you spend during your initial days while going to study
- Don’t make people around you think that
you have so much money which may get you in trouble.
- Even if you are getting constant
allowances / stipends, make sure to save a lot because it will help you
to face any unforeseen contingencies.
- Students who study abroad are always
entitled to certain discounts that are not applicable for the public.
Use those opportunities and save every penny you could.
20. GO WITH YOUR NEW SELF:
- Having your original personality is
wonderful. However it is advisable to start in a clean slate when you
- Show yourself gradually when it becomes
- Love and relationships can be the reason
why some people have double thoughts to study abroad.
- You must understand that whatever comes
in your way, study is your ultimate goal.
It may be hard for you to pack your life in a couple of suitcases and move to
study abroad. It can be overwhelming when the new place is nothing like your
However, Studying abroad is a good thing as mentioned above. It’s a dream that
people should embrace and learn to build their own self with the help of
You can observe the above tips carefully as it will make your study abroad
process smooth and harmonious.
Appreciate and embrace the opportunity!!! It’s ok to feel nervous. But the
excitement will kick-in in no time!!!!
Now that you have gotten the tips, see how to proceed for January
Have no idea of how to proceed with the study abroad process? Feel free to
contact us [email protected]
Our student counselors are available 24/7 to guide you:+91 9488972333 / +91 850858508