We’ve done a decent amount of traveling and have made some classic travel mistakes in my time. Be smarter than us by following these tips!
- I know we’ve mentioned this before, but tell your bank and credit card companies that you will travel abroad. Make sure they won’t block your accounts when they see international charges, and ask for phone numbers to call from abroad in the event you have any issues. The 1-800 numbers on the back won’t always work from overseas.
- Do not plan to use your blow dryers and flat irons that you use here in the US. Even with a plug adaptor and converter, the higher voltage can destroy (as in burn to a crisp!) your appliances and could potentially knock out power in entire buildings, which isn’t a great way to make friends abroad. If you’re not willing to forgo the blow dryers and flat irons for a few months, then it’s best to purchase local versions that operate on 220 volts once you get abroad.
- Bring a small weekend-size bag/backpack/collapsible duffle bag for trips you’ll take during your time abroad. Pack it with everything you’ll need for the first few days of your trip and bring it as a carry-on on the plane, so you’ll be ready in case your baggage is delayed.
- Don’t forget that you cannot bring more than 3 oz. of any liquid in your carry on for your flight overseas. Airport security can be very stringent. Make sure you follow all the rules when it comes to flying!
- If you follow a special diet (vegetarian, kosher, etc.) don’t forget to inform your airline ahead of time. It’s horribly unpleasant to be hungry and thirsty while you’re on a plane and they control when you get meals, so bring some snacks (stay away from fruit, especially if you have a layover in a European airport, as some countries don’t want you to bring perishable food into their airports). And make sure you have your own water on the flight (though you can’t take any through security, remember).
- Make several photocopies of your passport ID page and credit/debit cards to leave with a family member or someone you trust. That way, if these items are lost or stolen, they’re much easier to replace.
- Set up a plan of communicating with your family members while abroad—we recommend calling or e-mailing them only once or twice a week while abroad. Your parents will ALWAYS want to talk to you more often than that, but remember that part of studying in another country is putting some distance between you and your old life. You’ll be better for it!
- Buy a journal. Study Abroad is a profoundly personal experience and Facebook updates alone won’t capture the spirit of what you are doing. Keep a journal that is meant to be just for you.
Please remember to complete the Visa Status Survey if you have not done so. You can find a link to the survey here.
You should have received an email with access to our pre-departure survey, and are now able to submit feedback regarding your experience.
As previously mentioned, NYU’s Office of Global Programs strives to provide students with the best possible experiences and services as they prepare to go away, and we would like your feedback to know how we are doing and where we can improve. Please take a few minutes (really, it will only take a few minutes!) and complete. Your answers are anonymous and will help us as we prepare for future semesters.
Thanks so much for your assistance!
You should have now largely completed your study away to-do’s. As one last recommended to-do, we would like to challenge you to think about how you will document and reflect on your experience away.
Your 3-4 month journey will go by with the blink of an eye, but you will create memories that last a lifetime. Consider creating a blog, both for your own benefit and as a way to share the experience with your family and friends. If you haven’t already, keep in mind joining the team of students blogging for ThisIsNYU throughout the Global Network.
Here is information on how to sign up.
In order to have a successful semester away, you should be prepared to experience different ways of interacting with the people and culture of your new city. GlobeSmart is a web based tool that provides quick access to knowledge on how to communicate effectively with people from over sixty countries around the globe, as well as links to research about American stereotypes, cultural and ethical relativism, and tips for maximizing study abroad.
Learn more about creating and understanding your cultural profile here.
You must arrive in Accra by January 19th. Please make sure you have secured your visa in time for your date of departure. Please contact OGS at 212-998-4242 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any issues or concerns.
You’ll be on a plane before you know it. Take a minute to look through this final checklist to make sure that all of your bases are covered:
- Get your student visa
- Register for 12 – 18 credits; this does not include any waitlisted courses
- Pay your NYU e-Bill
- Register for HTH and print out the confirmation card
- Register with the Moses Center if applicable
- Submit Medical Forms to the Health Center
- Submit your Flight Details to NYU Traveler
- Notify your bank and credit cards that you will be abroad
- NYU Students: Bring your NYU ID!
- Have all medications you may need for the full term & bring a copy of prescriptions (medication, eyeglasses, etc.) and carry it with you in your carry on
- Make photocopies of your passport/visa, ID, and cards (bank, credit card). Leave one copy of this packet with your parents and bring a set with you in your carry-on
- Bring your flight confirmation print-out to the airport
- Check the luggage restrictions for your airline before you pack
- Have some cash on hand to get you through the first few days (you can exchange at the airport if needed)
- Pack a carry on with all important paperwork, phone numbers, medications, and a change of clothes in case your luggage arrives late