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Studying Abroad: What to Prepare

4 Min Read
November 07, 2022

 As we are bidding goodbye to 2017 and welcoming the arrival of year 2018, those of you that have just graduated from high school would be busy planning and preparing to head to your study destination abroad to begin your new journey! In Australia, for example, semester one will soon start at the end of February.  As we have always mentioned in our previous articles, preparation is the key! Before you go, we have prepared this 3-part article series that will discuss important details to make the move as easy as possible for you. Make sure to check them out!

  1. The Paperwork

Getting all your paperwork done could be one of the most painstaking part in your pre-departure preparation. Before you leave, ensure that you have all the documents ready. These include student visa, passport, academic records (with their certified English translations) and medical insurance. Check the dates on the documents and verify your ID carefully. Look for any mistakes. Inform the university or related institution as soon as you find one, so they can be fixed in time. Have several copies of these documents and put them in two different folders: one folder for you to keep and the other to be shown to the authorities.  Again, make sure all the legal documents are legally certified copies, especially those translated copies. This will save you from troubles later on. If you are still classified as a minor, make sure that you have legal permission to travel alone.

  1. The Money

Whether you are self-funded or sponsored, always bring some cash with you during your first visit. Try to diversify them in various values, such as USD 100, 50 and 20. You might need the small denominations to pay for bus tickets or taxis from the airport to your accommodation. Some universities have free airport pick-up service, check your university website for its availability. If you have credit cards, make sure that they are under your name and can be used overseas. Some countries have difficulties in processing bank cheques, so it is always a good idea to have cash. Check the immigration website to ensure how much cash you can bring without having to declare it to customs. Otherwise, you risking of getting into trouble. Some countries such as Australia require that you report to the authorities if you bring over AUD 10,000 cash.

  1. The Place: 

Finding proper accommodation with reasonable price is another gruelling task to go through. Do not panic, you can always ask help from the local Persatuan Pelajar Indonesia (PPI) available globally, property agents or local community selling websites such as Flatmates in Australia. We highly recommend you to inspect the place before sealing the deal. Inquire about the bonds required, what are included in the rental cost, whether it includes the bills or not. We can't stress the importance of having a contract, especially if you are staying with someone you don't know well. Make sure you read through everything before you sign the contract, as it's a legally-binding document.   Remember that your safety abroad is paramount. Don't stay somewhere or with someone that your gut feelings telling you not to. If you could not find a permanent accommodation yet, you can always try a temporary one. You can contact students who plan to go on vacation during the given period or about to finish their studies. Campuses also would have a forum or a noticeboard where students can post ads for accommodations. Another easier option is of course to stay on campus, there are a lot of students housing option on campus available. Normally there are also a lot of student accommodation complexes available surrounding the university or nearby. Just email the international admission office of your university to assist you if required.

  1. The Clothing

Packing the right essentials could always easily turn into a nightmare itself. What should you pack? Once again, you need to check the current season in the country you will be studying. Find out how generally people dress over there for the seasons. Utilize Google to assist your preparation. Google can give you plenty of helpful information about the weather and the local temperature. With this information, you can be sure that you pack adequately. We suggest you to pack some easy-to-mix-and-match clothing items, those that you can layer up easily for chillier weather. Remember to always pack at least a good and reliable jacket. You don't need to worry too much if you did forget something, thanks to the ease of online shopping and the rise of affordable modern clothing shops.

  1. The Flight

Just like other trips, you need to consider the duration of your flights, especially if you are taking multiple flights and transiting in some countries. Watch the transit time carefully. Avoid long transits. You might need a place to rest if you are stopping over for more than 12 hours and you will need to take your luggage with you. On the other hand, we also recommend you to avoid super short transits–one hour or less between flights. Murphy's Law states that anything that can go wrong, will go wrong. If one of your flights get delayed, you wouldn't want to miss out on all your other legs of flight. Make sure you allow adequate transit time between your flights. If there's a direct flight, that'd be the best choice.