wing of a plane while flying

Soon enough I will begin my new life in Sydney!

141. That’s how many days I have left in the U.S. before I move abroad to Sydney, Australia. It wasn’t an easy decision to make, but now that I have my visa and bought my plane ticket, the reality of moving abroad is beginning to set in.

The process of my decision to move abroad really got me thinking…what is it about me that makes me want to move abroad? Or, better yet, what is it that makes me the RIGHT person to move abroad?

Well, I had participated in the semester-long study abroad in Granada, Spain. To say that the experience was the best of my life would be an understatement. After studying abroad, I knew that moving abroad after graduation was on my bucket list.

Winona State offers all kinds of travel opportunities for students, but how do you know if you’re the right fit for studying abroad? There are a few personality traits that I think are crucial to determining if studying abroad (or moving abroad) is right for you.

1. Open-minded

You need to be open-minded if you’re going to enjoy traveling abroad, especially for a longer period of time. While studying abroad, you experience new cultures, new people, new food, well…just about new everything.

If you’re someone who can open your mind to new things, and even be excited about trying new and different things, then studying abroad might be a good match for you.

2. Flexible and adaptable

Moving abroad is a whirlwind of change in a small amount of time. I remember stepping off my plane into Spain and thinking, “Wow, these mountains are officially my neighbors, the language I’m hearing is what I’ll be hearing, these streets are where I’ll be walking.”

It’s important to be adaptable, because if you don’t adapt, you’ll always feel like an outsider, and that can be lonely. Having a willingness to immerse yourself in a new place is key to being a successful traveler.

3. Independent

Independent is one personality trait of world travelers, and it’s an important one. Leaving family, friends, pets and acquaintances behind is inevitable when studying abroad, and as much as I wished I could pack everyone in my suitcase, that simply wasn’t going to happen.

When you’re away from home for five months (or more), it’s important that you can feel content by yourself whether it’s on the subway to and from class, grabbing lunch alone or venturing out to make new friends.

If you read through this list thinking, “That’s so me!” then studying abroad just might be an awesome experience to explore. If you were thinking “kind of” or “possibly,” then a travel study might be a better option.

A travel study give you the amazing gift of travel and experience without keeping you away from home for months at a time. Either way, I encourage everyone to travel the world because the learning is endless and the experience is life changing!