Planning for your summer internship abroad can be so exciting; but, it can also create anxiety if you don’t have a clear idea of what you need to do before you depart.
Step one: take a deep breath.
If you’re traveling overseas as part of an organized internship program, you’ll most likely have access to a support network that can help guide you through your travel planning. For example, Alliance Abroad Group offers pre-departure coaching and 24/7 support in Australia through our on-the-ground partner, Work Intern Travel (WIT).
Step two: use the check list below to ensure you are prepared for your working holiday or internship abroad.
Things to do before you embark on your paid internship abroad:
- Make sure to save up sufficient pocket money (for fun and for emergencies)
- Find out (and make a record of) the location and contact information for your embassy in the host country
- Scan all of your personal documents required for travel and save them—along with important information about your program (emergency contact numbers, housing address, itineraries, etc.)—to the cloud. You can also email them to yourself. That way, you’ll be able to access information and copies of important documents via the web should you misplace the physical copies while abroad.
- Share your itinerary, travel plans, and in-country contact information with your parents (or someone you trust) so they’ll know how to reach you.
- Work with your program sponsor to understand any supplied medical coverage you’ll have while abroad.
- If you normally take regular medication, plan to have a full supply with you (and documentation of your need) for the duration of your stay abroad. Also, you may want to, not only locate pharmacies near the location of your internship, but call and confirm that you will be able to access the medication you need should you have to order more while in country.
- Become familiar with the local laws, rules, and customs of the country to which you are traveling.
- If you are a student, consider getting an International Student ID Card. The card is recognized worldwide (accepted in 120 countries) and may offer discounts on transportation, restaurants, and other items purchased while in country.
- Research ATM locations, local currency exchange rates and fees, and the types of cards that are accepted internationally. You’ll also want to notify your bank and credit card providers of your travel dates so they won’t flag overseas purchases as potential fraud.
Going abroad to explore a new culture or participate in a working holiday should be an exciting adventure, not something that causes anxiety–and it doesn’t have to be. Just take some time to work with your program sponsor to ensure you’re well prepared for the time of your life overseas.
Interested in paid hospitality internships and working holidays in Australia? Take a look at some of the paid positions available now through Alliance Abroad Group’s Work Experience Australia program.