Departure checklist for international students
Departure checklist for international students - Once you receive the acceptance offer from your dream institution, it is important that you divide your time in the next few months in making travel plans and putting the documentation process in place. Your study abroad application process does not stop at receiving the offer letter alone. Post your acceptance, you have to immediately start making financial arrangements, which also includes applying for an education loan or sponsorship. Most importantly, as per the pre departure checklist for international students, you are also required to apply for the student visa which is imperative to pursue education in countries abroad.
If you have not yet made a list of the items to take care of before stepping into international shores, below is a comprehensive pre-departure checklist that would guide you with the elements one need to check before flying.
Read below the departure checklist for international students:
Visa: Having your passport ready is the most important part of the departure checklist when you plan to pursue your education abroad. As per the study abroad timeline, a majority of the students applying to study abroad get their offer letters by April. While the next couple of months go in arranging funds for the programme through education loans or scholarships, students also have to make sure they have their student visas issued by the immigration offices of the respective countries. If your classes start in September, make sure you have your visas issued by July or August. While most countries have more or less the same requirements, there could be country specific requirements in some cases. Also, the time of issuance of a visa may stretch from two weeks to over a month depending on the students rush. Hence, it is advised that students start their visa process earlier, especially, for countries like the USA and Australia.
Insurance: Not many students consider the possibility of buying insurance policies to study abroad. However, as per the departure checklist for international students, insurance is an important element in the study abroad process. One of the main reasons why an insurance cover is important because healthcare in most of the countries abroad is very expensive. As such, it is necessary that students get themselves insured to avoid unforeseen health expenses during study. In general, international students go for two types of insurance- health insurance and travel insurance. In fact, most countries like the USA and Australia make it mandatory for international students to buy insurance cover for themselves. Eg: International students in Australia are required to have the Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) for the entire duration of their study. Some countries even allow international students to buy insurance cover from private bodies in the absence of government cover. You can find the necessary information on the insurance you need to buy from the university you will be joining.
Accommodation: It is another element you have to consider after you get your offer letter from the university. In fact, arrangement of accommodation is one of the most vital elements of the departure checklist for international students. While most universities offer on campus accommodation like hostels and paying guest facilities, some students prefer to live off campus. Off-campus accommodation may include renting apartment or even putting up as a paying guest. Most universities offer resources to help you find the right kind of accommodations off campus. You can even get in touch with student bodies for help. Choose your accommodation on the basis of two factors- cost of accommodation and security. Even if you live off campus, remember to find a room close to your university so that you do not have to spend extra on transport. Areas surrounding a university usually have many accommodation facilities like homestay etc. You should start looking for accommodation from June itself so that you do not face any trouble after you reach your destination.
If you are confused whether to live on- campus or off- campus, the link below will help you distinguish between the two.
Documentation: Documentation, in general, includes everything from visa papers to original certificates. As per the departure checklist for international students, some of the important documents to keep with you would be the offer letter, academic transcripts, visa documents, passport and education loan documents, among others. It will be better to keep copies of all the original copies in your documents bag. It is advisable not to submit your original documents unless expressly required by the university or immigration officials. It is also important that you carry proper identification cards valid in your home country.
Travel arrangements: Another major checklist for international students is to see that all the travel arrangements, including booking of flight tickets as per the orientation schedule of your programme of study, are in place. In between getting the offer letter and managing funds, most students tend to leave the decision of booking fligh tickets toward the end. Given the heavy rush of students booking international tickets at the same time, more often than not, the price of tickets skyrockets. It is, therefore, advisable that students should book their flight tickets immediately after receiving the offer letter. Keeping a few months between booking your tickets and leaving for your destination saves a lot of money which can be directed on other stationery requirements.
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