Five Things to Know Before Visiting a Foreign Country
After an exhausting period of school, work, or any kind of stressful activity, many of us look forward to having a vacation once there’s a break. Traveling to foreign countries are a great way to take advantage of breaks. Experiencing life in a foreign country can be very interesting to see how different cultures can actually be. Before leaving, it’s important to be aware of a few different things to help you best enjoy your break.
This one seems pretty obvious, but in many countries, English is not the main language spoken by their residents. It’s definitely okay to not be fluent in whichever language is spoken there, but don’t expect everyone to understand what you are saying. Also, Google Translate isn’t always your best bet - it is sometimes inaccurate. Before you leave, be ready by learning basic communication phrases - such as, hello and thanks. People will know that you are respectful of their culture and will probably be more kind to you.
Traveling to a foreign country and back can sometimes be costly, depending on where you are going. After arriving in a foreign country, you may realize that they use a different currency different from what you are used to. Personally, I like to use a currency converter on the internet to have an idea of what $1.00 is worth in other countries to have an idea of how much each “dollar” (ex. Great British Pound, Euro, Rupees, etc.) is worth in another country. You can adjust this based on what currency you normally use and how much. It’s also important to be aware that sometimes items cost more or less in other countries. For example, many items are usually more expensive if bought in Canada than in the United States.
When you travel anywhere, you need a place to stay. Some international countries are limited on their use of air conditioning and heating, so pack accordingly! Bathrooms, dining rooms, bed rooms, and even the style of hotels and houses can significantly vary, but that’s one of the most interesting things to witness when traveling to a foreign country - it really helps you experience their culture! It’s always good to check out websites and ask people how the living styles are in a certain country before going to have an idea.
This is probably the most important point because, seriously? Who doesn’t like food? Many countries serve all types of cuisines, even the ones that you are used to daily. One of the best parts about traveling to foreign countries is trying the food that’s most famous for there. No matter what you may eat, remember to always wash your hands before, and it’s never a bad idea to see how sanitary the restaurant is before eating there - is it clean? Are there a lot of bugs? But despite these, try new types of food and experience the culture!
Last, but not least, what you wear and display is very important to consider when traveling to a foreign country. Always check the weather before traveling to figure out what may be suitable to pack on the trip - is it hot? Cold? Windy? Rainy? You should be prepared for whatever comes your way. Also, pack items that are acceptable to wear in that country. Wearing revealing clothes - like crop tops, shorts, flip flops - can be considered offensive in some countries. The last thing you want to do is to make someone uncomfortable. A good idea would be to ask people or look at pictures of what most people wear where you are planning to travel.
These are simply a few reminders or things you should know before traveling to any foreign country to have a great experience. But, most importantly, have fun! Traveling abroad, in my opinion, is one of the most rewarding experiences you can ever have!