Once you are officially accepted into your study abroad program, there are a few more
things you’ll need to do to ensure a smooth trip.
Study Abroad Checklist
- Apply for a passport, if you don’t already have one. If you do have one, make sure it is not expired.
It may take a few months to receive your passport, so do this first. You’ll need your
passport number to book your flights and apply for a student visa.
- Fill out the required pre-departure forms in your Billikens Abroad account
- Read through the study abroad handbook, which covers all of your questions about financial aid, fitting in around your host
country, academic policies, health and safety, packing lists, making the most of your
time abroad, reassimilating into American culture upon return, and more.
- Plan out a budget. In addition to reviewing the study abroad program cost, you should prioritize your
additional personal expenses (including optional excursions, independent travel and
other social activities). Students who have recently returned from a semester abroad
have put together a list of travel resources, so be sure to check those out.
- Pack. Keep in mind that many returning students say they wished they had packed less. Take
a look at our packing guidelines when thinking about what to bring.
- Make a list of emergency contact phone numbers and tuck it in your purse or wallet
so they are with you at all times.
- Contact your bank and credit card company so they allow charges from a foreign country.
- Talk to your doctor about getting the required vaccines for your host country. Remember to
pack enough prescriptions and over-the-counter medicine for the duration of your
time overseas. Some prescribed medications in the United States. are illegal in other countries,
so check with the local embassy for guidelines. Always carry a copy of your prescription
and keep medications in the labeled containers in which they were dispensed.
- Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program with the U.S. Department of State. This is a free online service that helps the U.S.
Department of State contact U.S. citizens abroad if there is a family emergency in
the United States, or if there is a crisis in your host country.
- Reach out to a study abroad peer mentor or the study abroad alumni about what to expect.
Academic and Withdrawal Policies
Studying abroad is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for personal, professional
and academic development. It is important to determine how courses taken abroad will
enhance your overall academic plan and enrich your academic experience.