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How to have the best study abroad experience?

Studying abroad is a once in a lifetime experience – regardless of whether it is for a semester abroad, gap year, summer school or a full degree.

You will live through ups and downs, face some challenges, and collect unforgettable memories. Follow our tips to have the best time of your life when you study abroad!

Preparation is key

If you want to make the most out of your studies abroad, the first planning phase of your studies is crucial. For instance, that includes taking an informed decision regarding your study program, filling out the paperwork, booking a flight, taking out health insurance, finding your initial accommodation and budgeting. Luckily, Asia Exchange will support you in the best way possible during this process.

Reality can differ from your imagination

When you are preparing yourself to go abroad, you will most likely start envisioning your student experience. And that’s great! Keep on daydreaming and manifesting. However, you should be aware that your expectations can differ from reality. Some highlights can exceed all you ever imagined, and some of your assumptions will turn out to be prejudices. Moreover, you might face challenges you haven’t expected. Therefore, we recommend you: get excited about studying abroad while being open-minded and curious about the unknown.

Be open-minded

If you go into this experience with an open mind, it will make all the difference! We tend to think in stereotypes or compare things with the standards of our home country. Instead of judging, relax and be open-minded towards the foreign culture, unknown environment, and many new impressions. It will help tremendously to make the most out of your time abroad.

Deal with a culture shock


Many students experience a culture shock, even though they are open-minded. That is normal – it can happen to anyone! The first days and nights all by yourself in a new country can be overwhelming. Try to relax and give yourself some time to adjust. Speak with other students about the way you feel. You will realize that you are not alone. The negative feelings will not last and a great study abroad experience awaits you!

If you want to know more about preventing or dealing with a culture shock read this article!

Go out of your comfort zone

The saying “Great things never came from comfort zones” exists for a good reason. The thought of studying abroad can be scary. Most students get increasingly nervous shortly before the adventure abroad begins. Moving to a foreign country all by yourself most definitely lies beyond your comfort zone. But don’t be scared to break out of your daily routine – we promise you it will be worth it! Once you arrived at your destination, stick to that mindset: try new activities, say yes to adventures, eat local food and put yourself out there.

Immerse yourself in the culture


If you want your study abroad experience to be as valuable as possible, you should try to immerse yourself in the culture. Don’t hang out with only exchange students from your home country, eat only familiar food, and do activities you usually do at home, as tempting it is. Invest your time more in connecting with locals, picking up the language, trying a new hobby, eating the local cuisine or learning about the culture. A great way to do so is making local friends or joining field trips of your university if possible.

Make friends from different nationalities


One of the highlights of your studies abroad will be making friends from all over the world. The connections you make abroad will have a massive impact on your overall experience. Connect with your fellow students, talk to locals, and be open to meeting new people. Consequently, you will make friends for a lifetime, find potential business partners, and learn more about foreign cultures. You will see how fast and deep relationships can grow when you are abroad. Sharing this unique experience with others will make it more intense and valuable.

Learn as much as possible

After all, studying abroad should be beneficial for your personal development and education. And there is no better opportunity to grow academically as well as personally than studying abroad! Of course, we recommend you to be a diligent student at your host university and focus on your courses, assignments, and exams. However, you should take full advantage of your free time as well. Take a language course, book a cooking class, hike a volcano, or learn how to surf. Whatever your study destination offers, say “Yes!” to new things! You will return home with a suitcase full of memories and new experiences.

“Study hard, learn as much as you can both culturally and academically, but always remember to make time for putting that cultural knowledge to use. Travel, grow and live in the moment.“


Student Experiences

Let the students speak! You can read interviews with our students, see their reports or check out their blogs for helpful tips for your own semester abroad. Below you can also find videos and testimonials.

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