Nicole Spencer graduated from Hofstra University in May 2014 and is currently studying to take the LSAT. She enjoys reading, writing, and the great outdoors.
Everyone tells you that you should travel during your collegiate years. And they’re right! My sophomore year, I took a road trip from New York to Boston with four of my closest friends. The four hour trip seemed to fly by as we chatted and laughed. I grew up in the Midwest. I had never been to Boston and I had certainly never been anywhere by myself! It was so exciting and going with my friends only enhanced the experience. Boston was wonderful and so different from my native Chicago. I fell in love with the small town feel and the food was wonderful. It became my destination of choice throughout college.
There is a freedom in the schedule you have during college that is difficult to find in the world after college. Traveling can seem a daunting task in the face of obstacles such as budget or transportation but there are many ways to travel even on a small budget!
Expand your definition of travel. To travel doesn’t necessarily mean to go great distances. Day trips are a great way to break up the monotony that can come from long days of studying. Get to know the area around where your school is located. Visit local historical monuments or locations. Are you into hiking and nature. Search for trails in the area. Love scavenger hunts? Try Geo-caching. Geo-caching is a world-wide scavenger hunt that makes discovering new things about your school town inevitable. Get started at https://www.geocaching.com/.
Join a benefits website. These sites reduce the cost of travel for students and can make a longer distance trip more affordable. Student Advantage (http://www.studentadvantage.com/) provides discounts on a variety of services including Greyhound and Amtrak. Student Universe (http://www.studentuniverse.com/) offers discounts on flights. Using services like these make it easier to plan. Groupon also often has deals that make it easy to go from say Maine to California on a students budget.
Go with friends. Not only is traveling with friends more fun than traveling alone, splitting the total cost among fie or six is much cheaper than footing the bill alone.
Take full advantage of study abroad programs. A trip to France doesn’t have to only take place in Paris. Travel around all of France. Visit Great Britain. Take a weekend trip to Germany. Do a weekend cruise to the Panama if you are studying in Costa Rica. Studying abroad is supposed to broaden your field of vision. Keep an open mind and explore more than just the country you chose to study in. Think of that country as a home base — perfect for learning and studying, providing you with stability and comfort with allowing you to see as much of the world as possible in your time away from your permanent home.
It is also important to leave your expectations of behaviors and customs at home. Allow your travels to open you up to new ways of doing things, thus broadening your horizons.