| Friday, December 16th, 2022

Study abroad: International money transfer guide

There's no denying that studying abroad is an exciting adventure! However, the last thing a new international student needs on top of all the new adjustments is money stress.

We've gathered together some useful tips for international students preparing to study abroad and their families, so that everyone can be fully prepared for the journey ahead; not only for the education experience, but ensuring that all payments and international money transfer can be easily made, whether for tuition, living expenses or even an emergency.

For international students, this will be an exhilarating time as you travel to a new environment. Having said that, moving to a new country can be daunting. From cultural differences to non-native languages, spending an extended period of time abroad can feel like plunging headfirst into the unknown. This is where planning comes in, as students who have the time to prepare can make the most out of their experience.

A little work beforehand could save you a lot of trouble later, should you run into a situation where you need assistance. So without further ado, here's a good place to start!


Set up your finances first

This might not come as a surprise, but international students will need to have funds available from the get-go. This is especially true in the first few months, when you haven’t yet set up your finances, opened your bank accounts and paid your tuition. Setting up an international money transfer account puts a process in place to cover these expenses and spare you the stress on top of your studies. But before you get started, consider these steps to ensure that the money transfer goes smoothly:


●       Compare foreign currency to find the best deal and service available

●       When paying tuition bills, ensure the final amount received will not be subject to any fee deductions (meaning your tuition payment will be short)

●       Use a reputable company for the international money transfer, such as those listed on our website

●       Avoid paying for expenses or using providers that accept overseas credit cards that typically give very poor exchange rates

●       Do a test run for a small amount to ensure smooth service

●       Open a bank account

To be able to manage your day-to-day life in your new country, you will need a local bank account – most mainstream banks will offer special student accounts. You will likely need to present your passport, letter of admission to your school, relevant visas and proof of your address. The process to set up a bank account is not always easy, so be sure to start this as soon as possible


Arrive nice and early

Basically, the earlier a student arrives, the more time they will have to get acclimated to their new surroundings. Plus, it will allow time for the proper paperwork to go through. Ideally, the goal should be to arrive about a month before classes begin or when the college opens up its living spaces for the semester. By arriving early, you can start to settle into your living quarters and become familiar with the campus and surrounding community.

Most colleges will have orientation before the semester begins, so this will be a good time to get to know the campus like the back of your hand. However, if you can join an orientation that is designed to bring new/international students together, this will help you make new friends and settle into your new surroundings. Unsurprisingly, studies show that students who make friends at the start of the semester are much more likely to stay in school!


Go to the international student office

This will most likely be the top of your list after settling into your living quarters. Rest assured, the international student office is there to work with you and other students on a regular basis to ensure that everything is going according to plan and provide the necessary support. They generally take care of the paperwork that is required for international students and offer advice as to how best you can enjoy your experiences while at the college or university.

You’ll want to ask all of the questions that are on your mind about the campus and what it provides. There are also usually several events designed for international students that take place at the beginning of the semester and throughout the year as well – the best thing you can do is jump in and get involved; this may be a great place to find other students from your country to help form friendships early on and get settled into the campus routine with others going through the same thing as you.

Lastly, if you have any visa or immigration questions, the international student office will be able to advise you what you need to do, both in advance of arriving and if you want to work or stay in the country after your degree.


The admissions office and getting to know the campus

After you take care of any business at the international student office, it's a great idea to swing by the admissions office as well; they should have more information about students from your country that may be on campus, assuming that the international student office didn't have that information. Plus, if you want to help out a little, offer to volunteer a few hours during orientation, which is a great way to get involved and meet more people!

After going to the admissions office, it's time to really get to know the campus. Once you have your class schedule to hand, you can visit each building and locate where the classes are going to be to save you stressing and getting lost on your way to lectures. Plus, you'll want to find all the major buildings that will be essential to your college career, such as the library, student centre, fitness centre and cafeteria.


Be positive and enjoy!

Last but certainly not least, maintain a positive attitude during your stay! One of the key elements to success is being positive about your situation and knowing what you want to accomplish. Having a positive outlook means that you are going to enjoy your stay even more and get the most out of your academics, social life and integration with the teachers, students and staff on campus.

This is going to be the time of your life and it's important to make the most of it. By being as prepared as possible, you can have a little peace of mind even if things should not go as well as you hoped. When the unexpected occurs, remember that an international money transfer is just a phone call away if you have set everything up correctly.

A money transfer is your lifeline in financial emergencies when you need your family to send money quickly. Transferring some money from overseas in advance can also put your mind to rest. For many who study abroad, the experiences they have will be something that they will never forget as long as they live, so get ready for the time of your life, unhindered by financial worries.


Ready to get on top of your student finances and find your money transfer provider? See our credible list of recommended companies.



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