If you are a college student, the idea of studying abroad has probably crossed your mind. Making new friends, exploring a foreign country, learning in a whole new environment, and taking breathtaking photos for your social media feed; it’s an experience like no other. Unfortunately, those memories come with a price.
Studying abroad also means tuition, living expenses, plane tickets, school supplies, and spending money so you can actually enjoy your time in another country. Many students fear that they won’t be able to fund it, as your regular college financial aid package doesn’t always cover programs abroad. Luckily, there are ways to make studying abroad more affordable.
Search for Scholarships
Scholarships are a student’s best friend. Search online or ask a guidance counselor or adviser about scholarship options that are available to you. There are tons of study abroad scholarships out there, many of which are designated for certain groups. For example, women and students of color can often find scholarships just for them. There are also many continents- or country-specific scholarships you can apply for.
Look for Grants
Unlike scholarships, which are merit- or skills-based, grants are designed for students in financial need. Grants are created to give educational opportunities to students who otherwise couldn’t afford them, from attending college to studying abroad. Search for study abroad grants and read their financial requirements to see if you qualify.
Consider a Personal Loan
Taking out a personal loan for your study abroad expenses ensures you don’t have to give up on your dream of studying abroad. A personal loan offers affordable payments so you can focus on learning and having fun while you’re overseas. With a fast approval process, a loan can take away one stressful aspect of planning for your time abroad.
The most surefire way to get money is to earn money. Look for a part-time job where you can make some extra cash between classes. If you already have a job, try picking up some extra shifts. Too busy to work? Try a side hustle. Babysitting, tutoring, walking dogs, selling crafts, delivering food, and giving music lessons are all great ways to make a little money while working within your schedule.
Some students may be able to work at internships while they study abroad. Not only will you get to live in an amazing new place, but you’ll also gain work experience as well! A paid internship can offset many of your living expenses while abroad, slashing the cost of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
Just because you’re broke doesn’t mean you can’t see the world! With a little time and effort spent researching your financing options, you can study abroad even if you’re on a budget.