Studying abroad is an once in a lifetime experience, so you are going to want to capture or document it in one way or another. Don’t get half way through your trip and realize that you don’t remember what adventures you’ve had! Make sure to figure out how you want to log or record your experience early on so that you can capture your whole time abroad.
1. Blog about your experience!
Blogging and writing down your experience is a great way to capture your time abroad. See if your program or school offers a blogging program that you can write for. You can also create your own on websites like WordPress to post as much as you want. Blogging is a great way to remember your trip and to share your adventures with others very easily. There are many types of blogs. Recalling day-by-day activities, describing trips, or just sharing advice acquired are all ways to document your trip. Additionally, if you are having family members asking about your travels, this is an easy way to send mass updates. Find your blog style and enjoy writing about your adventures!
2. Journaling is an option, too.
If blogging is a little too public or formal of a way to remember your trip, then journal for yourself. The same rules apply with blogging — there are so many ways you can document your travels in writing. You can bullet all of your favorites, do a day-by-day update, or just about write important events. Pen and paper journaling is fun, but notes on your phone work too — whatever is easiest so that you just do it. Journaling is personal, so perfect grammar and the best handwriting aren’t always necessary.
3. Vlog your daily life.
A fun way many students are capturing their adventures is through video. An idea to achieve a full semester vlog is to take quick videos at all important events. Then, at the end of the semester, move all of those clips to iMovie or other video editing apps. At the end of your experience, you will have little snaps of your favorite parts compiled into one montage.
4. College postcards and souvenirs.
There will be a souvenir shop in just about every city you travel to. Pick up something small and find a unique, personal item for yourself at each new destination. I have been picking up postcards! On postcards you can get an image of your favorite site and write highlights on the back. I recommend making sure it’s something inexpensive and small so you can store it easily and can obtain many of them. There are a lot of other souvenirs you can choose from to take back home if postcards aren’t your thing!
5. Take Photos
This is the easiest way to capture your experience. Most phones have great cameras and it’s easy enough to snap photos during your adventure. You can save them for yourself, send them to your family and friends back home, or upload them to social media. No matter what you do with the photos, you won’t regret taking them. It is easy to print photos once you get back home to have the physical copy.
Studying abroad will be one of the most exciting times of your life. Make sure you capture it in one way or another. Many people back home will be experiencing your country through your eyes and will love to see what you’re up to. Later on in life, you will want to look back on your time abroad, so make sure you won’t feel regret for not documenting it in some way.
This post was contributed by Maiya Mindoro, who is spending her spring semester studying abroad with AIFS in Barcelona, Spain.