So you’re about to head off to the beautiful Emerald Isle. I’m sure you’re a little (or a lot) nervous, but don’t fret. I’ve compiled seven of the best tips for you to make the most of this study abroad adventure.
Budget, Budget, Budget
This one is pretty obvious, but budgeting is a major must do. You need to make sure you can afford to eat, as well as go to that country you’ve always dreamed of visiting! Champlain does a great job of reminding you to budget. In Dublin you will have the option to do the InSight workshop, which is a budgeting worksheet for the semester. You should definitely do this, as it is a way to help you stay on track. But you should certainly budget before the trip has even begun. One of our friends forgot about the expenses of transportation throughout Europe, and had to cut out a trip she had already paid the flight for because other transportation she had taken on a previous trip turned out to be so expensive. So always triple check your budget to make sure you’ve thought of everything.
Get Out of Your Comfort Zone
It’s a giant cliche, and it’s easier said than done, but you have to do it! Whether that means traveling to another country (or around Ireland) solo, reciting a poem at a poetry slam, or talking and meeting new people, you have to do it! You won’t be able to grow as a person if you don’t get out there and explore outside of where you feel safe!
Venture Outside The City
In this case, I mean travel on a smaller scale than flying to another country. Take the train out to beautiful Howth, or go to Bray and climb Bray Head. Go explore another city like Galway or Belfast! Ireland is packed with places to explore, people to talk to, and events to take a part of.
Clean Smaller Loads of Laundry
I know, I know, it sounds strange, but hear me out. The dryers here in Dublin are not the best. Often this means if you put in a large load of laundry, even though it may all fit in the dryer, it is still damp once it’s cycle has ended. This means you have to purchase another cycle for the dryer again, which is inconvenient on both your wallet and time. So do yourself a favor and put in smaller loads of laundry or go Irish, and dry your clothes on an drying rack in the apartment. It takes a bit of planning, but will save you some money and headache in the long run.
Don’t Bother Packing Toiletries
You can save precious space and weight in your suitcase if you don’t pack toiletries. Everything you need from shampoo, toothpaste, and laundry detergent is minutes away from Highlight.
Fighting Homesickness – Get Active
Homesickness can be really tough. In order to combat it, you have to stay active. Go out for a pint (or two) with your friends. Go on Champlain activities. Go for a walk around the area, or explore Phoenix Park. If you keep yourself busy with other activities it will help you take your mind off of the homesickness.