There are many benefits to studying abroad, and it provides students with numerous advantages.
Studying abroad exposes you to a new culture by providing you with the opportunity to travel throughout the world.
Furthermore, as an international student, you will be eligible for many incentives associated with studying abroad. So, if you are wondering, “What are the benefits of studying abroad?” we have some solid reasons to consider. Please read on.
What are the Factors to Consider When Studying Abroad?
There are no suitable words to explain how incredible it is to study in other countries. You get to meet people from around the globe, have life-changing experiences, and create new memories.
If you are unprepared, though, the adjustment from cozy family life to independent living can be challenging and unpleasant, and you could face challenges that would be difficult to overcome.
To avoid this, we have gathered the factors you have to consider before deciding to study abroad.
Where to Study
Countries are similar to persons in that no two are alike. When it comes to creating friends, you will probably find it simpler to connect with others who share your interests.
When settling on a country or location where you’d like to live and study for an extended period, you might want to do the same, but in the form of research.
To start, acquaint yourself with the nation’s language, culture, religion, habits, food, and other aspects, so you do not go in blind. It is also beneficial to go into it with no preconceived notions or expectations.
Whatever the case is, it is constantly a good idea to know what you are up against beforehand so you do not regret your decision afterward.
Many international students go through culture shock when they start studying abroad, and many of them are homesick throughout the academic year.
You should be able to avoid cultural shock if you follow the first rule.
On the other hand, unexpected circumstances may force you to be alerted, forcing you to adjust.
Keep an open and optimistic attitude about what is going on around you and ask for assistance.
Do not isolate yourself in the hopes of meeting someone. You must take responsibility for yourself because you are now a young adult.
Missing your family and friends and being homesick from time to time is normal. So, based on what we have seen others do, you can bring some food from home and phone your parents frequently.
Remember that no matter how much you miss your family, your next vacation is only a few months away, so make the most of your time away since you will miss it once it is over.
Cost of Living
Once you have decided where to study, it is a must that you consider the cost of living in that country.
For example, if you plan to study in Europe or the US, be prepared to be spending more than what you would be spending if you are currently living in Asia or Africa, as there is a significant difference in the living cost.
Weather and Clothes
You should also consider the climate and weather as well — Research the climate and average temperature of the location you have selected.
Knowing the kind of weather will determine what types of clothing you should bring. It also helps you determine what kind of adjustment you would be experiencing.
The era we are now living in is predominantly internet-based. As an international student living away from your family and friends, having good access to the internet is highly crucial.
Furthermore, as you will be studying, you will surely need the internet to research.
What Should You Prepare When Studying Abroad?
You have selected a fantastic study abroad program, gotten accepted, and are now looking forward to beginning your experience.
Congratulations! You are now about to get ready for the big trip.
- What should you bring with you?
- Is it necessary to purchase travel insurance?
- How should you handle money and phones?
These may be some of the things running around your head as you start a new adventure. But apart from these, what else do you need to do and prepare? Please continue reading to find out.
- Ensure that all of your documents are in place.
Get your passport as soon as feasible, and apply for your visa(s) as quickly as possible.
Check the expiration date on your passport if you have one.
Examine whether it will be valid after your semester abroad is finished.
- Arrange your flight ahead of time.
Finding low-cost aircraft tickets has turned into a game of chance and timing these days. A ticket’s price can vary greatly depending on when you want to attend and where you acquire it.
Simply make sure you have booked a flight to your study abroad destination.
Do not leave things to chance, you do not want to waste your money just before the semester starts.
- Secure travel insurance.
It is crucial to have a good medical and accident insurance policy in place when studying abroad, as well as coverage for emergency rescue and repatriation (hopefully not!).
When your health insurance company may cover you while traveling (not all do), travel insurance covers a few things that health insurance does not.
- Obtain all essential medical examinations and vaccinations.
Your doctor may recommend that you visit a vacation clinic to learn more about what you will need to stay healthy while on the road.
Notify your health insurance company of your plans and make a request for your medications (if necessary) ahead of time.
- Make arrangements for your classes, travel, and lodging.
Although each study abroad program is unique, the majority of them include regular courses.
Identify what classes you will be having and where and when they will be held, so you can organize activities around them. Know also where you will be lodging so you can determine your commute.
- Keep up with the latest currency exchange rates.
Many students think about daily costs when deciding where to study abroad, yet some of the most affordable countries are also the least stable.
If your country’s economy is particularly unpredictable, don’t anticipate the US dollar to be worth the same when you study abroad as it was five months ago when you checked the exchange rate.
When you budget for months rather than days, even minor adjustments might add up, and you may find yourself spending euros in a country you thought was budget-friendly.
- Watch the news to see if the country you are going to has issues.
You might want to know if your study abroad country’s economy is in trouble if their metro system is disintegrating if massive political upheavals are occurring if they are dealing with a health crisis, and so on.
Some of the best nations to study abroad are experiencing economic or political turmoil, so do not get too worked up over minor setbacks. Simply add new information to your existing study abroad arrangements.
The country’s borders are closed in the worst-case scenario, and your study abroad program is halted. Student travel insurance will protect you in instances like these.
- Let your government know about your semester by registering.
You are going on a trip to another country. Cell coverage may be limited, and you may find yourself completely alone. It is one of the things that makes studying abroad so fascinating, but it also puts you at risk.
Take solace in the notion that, whatever occurs, the government is aware of your location and knows the people to be contacted in case of an emergency.
- Speak with your bank.
To find out how your debit and credit cards work in different countries, contact your bank.
Some banks will have nearby ATMs, while there are those that may have regional partners that do not charge fees for cash withdrawals. If yours is a smaller bank with no foreign presence, plan beforehand.
As much as possible, rely on a traveler’s credit card, and only withdraw cash when absolutely essential.
- Make sure that all of your credits will transfer to your home university.
Pre-approved study abroad programs should be no problem, but if it is something you found online or through another agency, you should consult an academic counselor to ensure you will be on track when you return to college.
The last thing you want to realize after studying abroad is that none of your classes applied to your degree.
14 Benefits of Studying Abroad
Whether you are considering studying abroad or attempting to persuade your parents to pay for it, it is critical to understand the tangible advantages of living and studying in another country.
Whichever study abroad program you choose, it will almost certainly enrich your life in a variety of ways you have not even considered. Below are the benefits of studying abroad.
- It enhances and boosts your CV.
This is one of the most important benefits of studying abroad.
Including your study abroad experience on your CV is particularly appealing to future employers and graduate school admissions committees, since it demonstrates that you are willing to take on new challenges and are self-motivated.
It also tells them that you are open-minded and concerned about events occurring outside of your own country.
- You could find and land career opportunities abroad.
Studying in a different nation may open up more work opportunities depending on your field of study.
Organizations wanting to hire international workers usually demand proof that candidates can succeed in a global environment.
Studying abroad, especially in a subject where you want to work, gives you the opportunity to highlight important skills and experience on your resume, such as cross-cultural communication and an understanding of international issues.
- You might learn a new language.
Over the last five years, demand for bilingual professionals has more than doubled, and this trend is expected to continue.
Learning a foreign language is expected to earn you a 2% ‘language bonus’ on your wage over the course of your life; however, some more in-demand languages can earn you double that.
It may not seem like much, but it will build up over the course of your career.
- It enhances your network.
Studying abroad gives you the opportunity to build long-lasting friendships with people from all over the world.
You broaden your international network while meeting people who may become lifelong friends.
Apprenticeship, career opportunities, and business partners are all instances of interactions that could lead to future employment opportunities.
You are more likely to be connected to new jobs and social opportunities if you know more people.
- You get the chance to learn and study differently.
Those who study abroad are frequently exposed to a completely different method of instruction. This can be intimidating, but it will also expand your horizons in terms of learning.
As you adapt to a new and different style of learning and studying, you become a better person without even realizing it.
- You might save money on tuition.
Even after factoring in travel expenses, studying abroad may actually save you money. If you are on a tight budget, direct enrollment is a better option than third-party study abroad programs that handle everything. If you are studying in another country on a tight budget, look for countries with a cheaper cost of living.
- You meet friends that will last a lifetime.
Making friends while studying abroad is easier than it appears if you choose a program that interests you and participate in it.
Many study abroad programs include social events and activities, and you may even have the opportunity to meet some of your classmates prior to the start of the program.
People often find that the acquaintances they make while studying abroad become some of their most cherished lifelong companions.
- It makes you more confident.
You will be on your own for a long time if you move to another country for a lengthy period of time.
Because you will have to figure everything out on your own, living alone in a strange nation will help you build a sense of independence. You will have to rely on yourself for everything, from ordering a dinner to taking public transportation.
While it may appear daunting at first, this experience will only serve to demonstrate how capable a person you are. As a result of stepping outside of your comfort zone, your self-assurance will skyrocket.
- You develop critical life skills and increase resilience.
Adapting quickly to your new environment will put your problem-solving abilities to the test. It will also improve your communication abilities, as well as your self-confidence and resilience.
One of the most substantial advantages of studying in another country is the development of these crucial ‘survival skills’.
Your daily adventures abroad help you become a more confident and capable person. And, regardless of your job route, these talents will be immediately useful in your life.
- You become a global citizen.
Being born and raised in a specific nation and not having the opportunity to leave it on a regular basis can make someone blind to the world around them.
However, after you move overseas for a semester or a year to study, you find yourself interacting and connecting with people from different countries in ways you could not before.
Once you leave your native country, you will have a better awareness of global challenges, how different events affect different countries, and your role in making the world a more sustainable place.
- You get to learn a different culture.
Our cultural heritage has a big influence on how we react to different situations.
Getting a variety of perspectives might help you see things in new ways. If you study abroad, you will encounter people from all walks of life, which will help you widen your perspectives and expand your thinking.
Your exposure to a varied group of people will not only help you develop people skills, but it will also help you in understanding others better, especially those from different cultures. This experience will surely help you grow more as a person.
- You get the chance to travel to new places.
This is one of the most obvious advantages of studying abroad. Living in a foreign nation while in college allows you to travel and explore as you have never done before. Excursions and field trips are included in many programs. If yours does not, you will almost certainly be surrounded by another study abroad students who are keen to see the world, so you will have travel companions from the start.
- You will learn more about yourself.
Putting yourself in an unfamiliar setting will help you identify your strengths and weaknesses. These are skills that can be developed further throughout your study abroad experience.
There are just things that you will never realize about yourself unless you live somewhere that is not your comfort zone.
- You find a second home.
Finally, there is a chance you will fall in love with your new place and would want to spend more time there sometime in the future, even settling down. You will never know unless you give it a shot.
Having said all of these things, I believe you can understand how studying abroad can benefit your social life, job, and overall happiness.
Additional FAQs – Benefits of Studying Abroad
When Should You Study Abroad?
The most common period to study abroad in college is when you are a junior, and many universities encourage you to do so.
As a result, colleges frequently schedule abroad programs for students in their third year, making the procedure easier for you.
Where Should You Study Abroad?
The country where you should study mainly depends on the program you are applying for.
For example, if you are interested in finance, consider studying in London or Hong Kong, which are well-known financial centers.
Look into Berlin or Tel Aviv if you are interested in technology.
The key is first to research what countries and universities offer the best programs and consider the list we have mentioned above before deciding where to study.
How Long Does Studying Abroad Take?
The amount of time you spend studying abroad is determined by the program and degree level you pursue.
An undergraduate degree will often take three or four years of full-time study, but a graduate degree, such as a master’s degree or equivalent, will take one or two years. Typically, a doctoral (Ph.D.) program lasts three to four years.