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Tips for Traveling Abroad

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For many of us who choose to study abroad, it's our first time really traveling independently. Sure, many of us have had family vacations, spring breaks in the US with friends, or even a mission trip to a remote place. But although these are travel experiences, it's not quite as independent as picking up your life to move to a foreign country for five months where you do not know anyone or the language. This might sound overwhelming, or even scary for some people, but making that decision to step out of your comfort zone and experience life in a new way will always be a good idea. I mean, you only live once right?
 A photo of one of the many beautiful lochs of Scotland.

After coming abroad and experiencing several different travel obstacles, I have realized there may have been a few things that I wish I knew prior to my travels. From problems with transportation and accommodation, to language barriers and culture differences, I have learned a lot from my experiences so far and I hope what I have learned may be able to help some of you as well.

 A photo taken on the Balcón de Europa in Nerja on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea (only an hour and a half away from Granada!).
 

Here are 4 Tips that will help you have a smoother travel experience while being abroad

Understand that things go wrong when you travel

Now, when I say "go wrong", I don't exactly mean that it will be bad, I just mean that somethings may come up unexpectedly. When you travel, life happens, nothing in this world is perfect, and you are bound to eventually run into an obstacle along the way. So if this ever happens to you, just know it happens to many of us out there as well.

Have a backup plan

Similar to #1, sometimes it's not possible to have a backup plan depending on your situation, but if you have time to think of a "plan B" prior to your travels, do it and it will really help you in the long run.

Learn some key phrases of the language that is spoken

If you are traveling to a country where a different language is spoken, it’s best to learn a few phrases that will help you get around if you need to. It's true that you will find people all over the world who know some English, but relying on that is not always your best option.

Go out of your way to meet people

You would be surprised how easy it is to meet people when traveling. Most people who you meet abroad are similar to you; someone who wants the world to be their classroom, appreciates the beauty of other cultures, and has a fun time while doing so. Long story short, do not be afraid to make a friend, or 50, since it’s never a bad thing to have friends all over the world.

 A view overlooking Heidelberg, Germany taken from the Heidelberg Castle.
 
 After hiking up the mountain, we were able to see a beautiful view of the Bavarian Alps.

Meghan L. is the Spring 2017 MOJO Blogger in Granada, Spain. She is currently a junior studying International Business Management & Spanish at the University of Dayton.

Meghan Leslie is the Spring 2017 CEA MOJO Blogger in Granada, Spain in Granada, Spain, and is currently studying at University of Dayton.
 
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