15 Things you should know before studying abroad

Study abroad is like a dream come true. It is thrilling and at the same time daunting. It is going to be about new atmosphere, new people, new culture, new language, new traditions and new places. Everyone in your circle will tell you how much of an exciting time you will have while studying abroad. They are surely right, but there a few things they don't tell you about studying abroad. We have compiled a list, take a look-

1. The "First Day" Panic Attack is normal

You are in a new land, far away from home, so feeling of anxiety on the very first day is normal. When you start meeting new people, this feeling will vanish.

2. Developing friendships take time

Friends you make while studying abroad are friends for life. Making friends will take time, it will not happen straight away. Just be patient, friendly and outgoing, and soon you will be able to develop friendships.

3. Road rules are different

Every country has different driving rules and pedestrian rules. Some drive on the right while some drive on the left side. It is best to get acquainted with these rules before hitting the road for your own safety and to save yourself from getting fined.

4. Pickpocketing happens everywhere

Keep your belongings along with you and your eyes wide open.

5. Student ID is equivalent to plenty of freebies/discounted stuff

While studying abroad, you are entitled to receive plenty of free things; all you need to have is Student ID. If it is not free, you can avail student discount. Discount on transportation, grocery, entertainment, books and supplies, etc. are available to students.

6. Gratitude is the key

Whichever destination you choose to study abroad, always show gratitude and learn to say, "Thank You" in their language.

7. Public Transportation saves big bucks

Navigating in and around the city via public transportation can save big bucks and make your travel easy and hassle-free.

8. Internet or Calling Cards can save you from lengthy phone bills

Prefer Skype or WhatsApp calls or calling cards to keep in touch with your family and friends as this will help you save money on phone bills.

9. Embrace diversity and differences

Students from different cultures and backgrounds come to study abroad. There will be an enormous difference in the living standards, cultures, traditions, languages, social atmosphere and food. Embrace the diversity and differences as this will help you develop a new perspective towards everything. Study abroad provides an opportunity to learn about diverse cultures first-hand.

10. Culture shock and homesickness are real

Culture shock has many stages- the honeymoon stage, the frustration stage, the adjustment stage and the acceptance stage. It is real and bound to happen. Even homesickness is bound to happen as you are far away from your home in an entirely new environment. Feeling homesick and experiencing culture shock is normal and easy to cope up with by mingling with people, exploring unfamiliar places and things surrounding you etc.

11. Reverse culture shock exists

Reverse culture shock is a feeling upon returning to a place that one calls "home" but is somehow no longer deemed as home. You may experience sadness, frustration, adjustment issues, etc. Just like culture shock, reverse culture shock will also pass.

12. Getting food of your choice in a new land is a bit difficult

A new land will bring with it new food. Do taste the new cuisine, but also pack yourself some food from home and learn a few recipes from your mother back home.

13. Exploration and adventure are equally important

Studying must be no doubt be your top most priority, but exploring new country is equally important to expand your horizons.

14. Change is inevitable

Your outlook towards life, people and the world; the idea of normalcy and fun, and several other things will change. It is inevitable!

15. Maintaining a journal is helpful

Studying abroad is an exciting and interesting chapter of your life and to remember it forever, it is best to keep a journal of everything you encounter. These are precious memories that you would want to cherish for lifetime. Putting all your memories and experiences on paper will remain with you forever, and whenever a tide of nostalgia flows, it will come to your rescue.

Despite all this, studying abroad is an opportunity of a lifetime! Live it to the fullest!