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61 Things Everyone Who Is Studying Abroad Should Know

Going abroad is probably the best thing you can do while in college. Sure, spring break may have seemed like the highlight of your life, but that pales in comparison to the time you will spend abroad.

Never in your life will you be as carefree as these few months, so it’s important to make the most of them.

You are essentially partying all across the world — and most likely on your parents’ dime. Sure, they may think you’re having a “cultural” experience, but we all know much, much better (sorry dad, but you had to know).

As much of a learning experience as this is, there are some things to be wary of before you travel. Check out this list to prepare yourself for what is guaranteed to be the best time of your life.

1. Carry-on luggage is never free.

2. You’re going to gain weight — accept it and embrace it. Believe it or not, you will be happy.

3. RyanAir is never the answer (but sometimes it is).

4. Being pick-pocketed happens everywhere.

5. If you study in Italy, you will pregame your dinner with pizza.

6. Make sure your classes are pass/fail.

7. You can fail from lack of attendance.

8. The sex show in Amsterdam is not all it’s cracked up to be, but you will still go and pay 50 euros for it… because abroad.

9. How much money you brought — you’re going to need to double that.

10. Your parents will never cut you off, no matter how many times they threaten you. I mean, you’re in a foreign country…

11. Your phone bill will never be reasonable.

12. Alcohol is cheaper than water.

13. When in doubt, you’re going out.

14. Going out during a layover is just protocol.

15. Allot one day per month for sleeping.

16. You become an espresso a-hole for a hot minute.

17. VISIT PRAGUE. Even if you have to take an overnight, nine-hour bus, it’s worth it.

18. Foreign people are assh*les, but no one is worse than a New Yorker.

19. Prepare to have the worst summer ever after you get home.

20. The exchange rate? Just multiply by five — sh*t is expensive.

21. Euros are not monopoly money.

22. EAT EVERYTHING.

23. You will buy weed from homeless people.

24. Anything that is too good to be true, is.

25. Healthcare is actually free. Do not try and fight this because you will get kicked out of the hospital. TRUST ME.

26. When you go to Amsterdam, you must go to the Van Gogh Museum and participate in the pre-visit rituals. You’ll know what I mean when you get there.

27. Buy a blowdryer when you get there.

28. …And a hair straightener.

29. Be wary of sketchy ATMs.

30. Pack lightly.

31. You will only fit into half of your clothing items by the time the semester is over.

32. Your abroad friends will continue to be your best friends.

33. Watching American sporting events is probably more fun outside of the US.

34. The earlier you book a trip, the cheaper it will be.

35. Blonde hair means different things in different countries, so don’t be offended if you get mistaken for a hooker — it happens.

36. The guys selling flowers on the street got them from a cemetery.

37. Always take out more money than you need from an ATM because the withdrawal fees cost as much as a Louis Vuitton purse.

38. Make friends outside your college friends.

39. GO TO AMSTERDAM and eat everything, especially candy and pancakes.

40. Don’t get too high that you can’t find the Amsterdam sign, you will want a picture.

41. If you’ve climbed one Duomo, you’ve climbed them all.

42. BRING A REAL CAMERA, your iPhone will not be enough.

43. Go left of center places; don’t just go where “everyone” goes.

44. Go to Ireland, go to a small town in the country you are living in, explore!

45. If you’re going to regret it, sleep in late.

46. Buy a metro card.

47. …And a bus pass. It’s really not hard to figure out at all.

48. Get out of bed every day, you are wasting your parents’ hard-earned money, don’t be hungover and a loser, too.

49. Go to the Amalfi Coast one of the last weekends you are there to maximize the great weather.

50. Book that trip through Bus2Alps because you will never figure that sh*t out yourself.

51. There is no actual bus schedule in Rome, you just show up and pray.

52. Be f*cking careful.

53. Try not to wear heels in Italy, you will fall at least 10 times due to a heavy mixture of Prosecco and cobblestone.

54. If you want weed in Spain, ask a guy with dreadlocks.

55. Allora, va bene, prego — in Italy you will hear these words all the time — they are interchangeable and mean everything and nothing.

56. Make best friends with your teachers — one day you may show up drunk to a test and need them to like you.

57. Go to Barcelona with all of your best friends for a minimum of four nights, see everything and stay out until 7 am.

58. Make a list of every expensive restaurant in your city and save them for when your parents visit.

59. Travel as often as you can, but don’t forget to embrace the city you’re in.

60. No matter how well you “speak a language,” you will always sound like an assh*le.

61. And last (but not least)… You will never be better version of yourself than when you’re abroad.

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Ashley Fern

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Ashley Fern is the second most veteran female staff member of Elite Daily. She started off as a Senior Lifestyle Writer and is now our Director of Branded Social Strategy. You can follow her on Instagram and Twitter @disco_infern0!
Ashley Fern is the second most veteran female staff member of Elite Daily. She started off as a Senior Lifestyle Writer and is now our Director of Branded Social Strategy. You can follow her on Instagram and Twitter @disco_infern0!

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