Going Home

All good things come to an end, and that includes your time studying abroad. Whether you had a fantastic time and want to stay forever, or you’re counting the minutes until you get back, you’ll need to get prepared, practically and emotionally.

Academics checklist

  • Make sure all your coursework requirements are complete before you go, all work submitted and you have confirmation of work received
  • If you have any approved work outstanding you should have confirmation, in writing, from your institution of the arrangements for completion overseas.
  • Return all borrowed books to the library so you don’t incur late/lost charges

Housing checklist

  • Notify residential staff/landlord in writing of your date of departure
  • Leave your room/property as you found it
  • Follow instructions from residential staff or your landlord for checkout instructions
  • Take photos of the room, including any damage that you’ve already reported

Getting to the airport

Public transport – trains & buses

Remember transport is not 24 hr in the UK, and public transport options may not be available for very early flights.

There will be public transport options, but usually the most cost effective vs practical, with luggage, is to share a car to the airport. Make sure you book in advance and know how much it costs, with multiple people and your luggage.

What to expect when you get home

You may have heard of reverse culture shock, when you return home to a place that was very familiar to find that things seem strange and unfamiliar, but it’s not home that’s changed it’s you.

It’s often said that study abroad is a transformative experience, and it’s true. Sometimes the difference between places are jarring and obvious. Sometimes though they are very subtle, and you subtly adjust to adapt to your new surroundings, absorbing thought patterns, perspectives, behaviours that are new then taking them back home.

It’s not me, it’s you

Beware, some symptoms of reverse culture shock are that everything at home seems dull in comparison with your exciting time of independence studying abroad. You may also look back on your time studying abroad with rose tinted spectacles, remembering only the good (travel! new people! independence! alcohol!) and forgetting the bad (expense! isolation! being squeezed onto a train carriage! strange money! weird food!!). People at home may not understand the experience you’ve had and may quickly tire of hearing your exciting stories of life abroad!

Just as it did when you came to the UK, it may take time to adapt to your ‘strange’ new surroundings.