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How To Prepare for a Semester Abroad
  • Posted:
  • November 20, 2016

So you are ready to take the plunge and study abroad. It’s likely to be one of the most exciting times of your life. Getting ready to head overseas can also be a stressful time. Here are some things you need to remember to take care, before you hop on that plane.

Passport and Visa

If you want to study abroad, you must have a valid passport. If you already have one it is important to be sure that it isn’t expired and it won’t expire until well after you are back home in America. If you need to get a passport for the first time, you can apply for one at your local post office, online, or at a State Department passport office. Your passport will take some time to arrive in the mail, sometimes up to two months, so make sure you give yourself plenty of time.

Along with your passport, your destination may require you to have a visa. You can find visa information on the Study and Exchange page on the State Department Website. If you need any additional travel information, you should contact the closest embassy of the country you are visiting. Be sure to give yourself ample time as this is not an overnight process.

Get your travel insurance

When you are traveling abroad it is imperative that you have proper insurance in case you become ill or have an accident. Travel insurance is just as important while you are away. Trip cancelation, lost luggage, delayed or canceled flights, stolen belongings and emergency evacuation are all covered by travel insurance. There are many different policies that can be tailored to your trip so make sure you take the time to do your research.

Visit a travel doctor

It’s always a good idea to visit your doctor for a full physical before spending time abroad. You want to make sure you are in tip-top shape before you leave. Don’t forget to bring a copy of your medical records with you in case you do end up getting sick during your stay.  Some countries have immunization requirements due to local diseases so make you sure are aware of them and discuss it with your doctor. Check the CDC’s website to search for required immunizations by country.

Pack it and ship it

You love your stuff, it’s ok to admit it. When you go abroad, you are going to need and want to bring some things from home. Be sure to prioritize what you are bringing with you. Airline baggage fees are astronomical these days, so carrying too much with you is not an option. Remember, you can buy shampoo abroad. When you are ready to ship out there are companies like Collegiate Storage and Rental that can do all the hard work for you. Just pack it up, let us know where you are headed and we will make sure it gets to your study abroad destination when you arrive.

So you decided you can’t take everything with you, now what to do with the rest? Instead of getting your things all back home to your parents you should consider putting those boxes in storage. This way everything is right there where you left it when you get back. Store all your things that you don’t need with a company like Collegiate Storage and Rental. You pack it up and we will come pick it up and store it for the entirety of your trip.

Collegiate Storage and Rental can help make your transition abroad a smooth one. Contact us at 1 (800)883-8281 or visit us at for more information.