Studying Abroad - Things to do in the First Week - Kotak Bank
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The idea of studying abroad can be exciting! However, you may come across various challenges while trying to make your dream come true. A lot of effort goes into selecting the right institution and the course/degree you would want to pursue, in addition to finalizing the country you want to study in. But if you have already decided on these things and are about to move abroad for higher studies, then this article is for you. Read on to understand the important things you will need to do in the first week of landing abroad.

Attend events hosted by the International Office; explore your College:

The events hosted by the International Office are worth attending as they will enable you to connect with other international students and make new friends. Also, they might plan a trip and take the international students to nearby places and cities, to help them get acquainted to the new environment.

It is also important that you explore your college campus on foot. Seek out the important buildings in the campus and get to know your campus better. Find out where your classes will be conducted, check out the library and other facilities provided in the campus.

Get your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP), if it's UK:

The BRP contains information that can be used to identify you – your name, date and place of birth, your photograph, your signature and your fingerprints as well as your immigration status. In case of some countries, you only get an entrance pass (which expires in some time) but not a visa, so getting a BRP within a week is absolutely essential. You may check with your visa office or university how to apply for a BRP. If you are going to stay longer than 6 months in the UK, then you’ll automatically get your BRP if your visa or immigration application is approved. For other countries, look for document equivalent to BRP, which you may have to secure.

Get your Bank Account sorted:

Every country has a different banking system. You need to get your bank account sorted since you could face trouble if your home bank does not exist in the country you have moved to. Also, you could end up spending on unnecessary international transaction charges. Getting a local bank account would be a smart decision. Moreover, it is advisable to know the exchange rate and how much things would cost in the local currency. Getting a local bank account will help you plan your budget and keep you from over-spending.

Get your SIM Card sorted:

Get yourself a good Smartphone and SIM card. Smartphones are a great help, as in addition to functioning as a phone, it also works as a GPS tool helping you navigate through new places while abroad. If you already have a smartphone, just buy yourself a new SIM card. Check out the plans offered. Many have special calling rates to India as more and more students studying in the universities abroad are Indians. The rates could be as low as Re. 1/min. You can compare the best plans and get a SIM at the airport itself as soon as you land.

Set up the procedure of splitting bills with roommates:

If you are sharing your room with another or some other students, then it is imperative that you decide what all expenses are to be shared and in what ratio should they be split up. This will ensure that you are in control of your finances and don’t end up spending more than is required.

Apply for part-time jobs:

If your course has not started or if you do not have much tasks to catch up with, then it is advisable to find a part time job right away. Later, every student will be looking out for a job and vacancies might soon disappear.

Apply for local driving license:

It's good if you already have a driver’s license; but if not, then it is better to apply for one while you are in India. Remember, your Indian Driving License is valid in most of the countries for the first 6 months of stay. However, if you are going to stay longer, you would be better off carrying an International Driver’s License. You can apply for the same while you are in India provided you already have a driver’s licence.

Get Kotak Multi-Currency World Travel Card:

You will get a local student account there, but the account will take a few days or even a week or so, to get activated. Till then, you'll need a travel card to survive. The Kotak Multi-Currency World Travel Card is a prepaid travel card that allows you to avoid the hassles of carrying foreign currency and traveller's cheques. This frees you from the inconvenience of encashment, hassles of misplacement/theft, and issues regarding universal acceptability.

The Kotak Multi-Currency World Travel Card can be loaded with multiple, is accepted worldwide at all Visa accepting merchant outlets and ATMs, and comes with complementary Insurance such as Lost Card Liability Insurance, Purchase Protection Insurance, Air Accident Insurance Cover, Loss of Passport/ Travel Docs/ Checked-in Baggage Insurance.

Going abroad for studying, is daunting, exciting and liberating all at the same time. Don't stress too much and make sure to enjoy each moment. These times won't come back, so cherish them while they lasts.

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