1. The language center will be where you will spend more time
Every city has a huge number of language centers. Price is usually one of the decisive characteristics when choosing but it is not the only detail you should look at CatEight.com. The area in which the center is located is very important, do you like the tranquility of the outskirts or do you want to experience the bustle of the natives every day and be in contact with it?
In general, language schools abroad have very complete facilities and usually offer very competent services but it does not hurt to inform yourself of the differences between them and choose accordingly.
Another aspect to take into account is the type of students who usually go to each academy, it is not the same to be a 15-year-old and end up in an academy full of professionals who want to learn business English than to be an adult who uses their savings to travel abroad and ends up in a class where all the students could be his children.
That will prevent you from connecting with your peers and feeling comfortable talking up your nose, which is what you’re going for.
2. Living together is not easy and even less with strangers so consider what accommodation you are looking for
The three main types of accommodation for language courses that we come across when planning a trip of these characteristics are native families, student residences and shared houses. The last one is only recommended if the stay is going to be very long and if the level of maturity of the student is very high since after all it is about renting an apartment and living on your own.
For this reason, we recommend in most cases one of the first two options. Both have their pros and cons; it is all up to you deciding what is more rewarding for you.
Families are perfect for getting along with English and really using it, but sometimes they take the term family very seriously and go with you wherever you go. A student residence, on the other hand, gives you more freedom but the tendency is usually for you to meet other Spaniards, join a gang and it starts to matter if you are in London or Salamanca, perhaps English takes a back seat. It’s up to you.
3. Take everything closed before you arrive
With the European health card, you have basic health needs covered in countries where health is public or with a certain percentage of copayment. However, if you are in a country where healthcare is private, they will charge you an arm and a leg even for going for ibuprofen, so we recommend that you study well the situation in your destination country and if it is necessary, take out a health insurance that can cover your well-being.
4. Do not forget the paperwork, without it you are nobody
Traveling abroad is not a piece of cake, each country asks for some documents and demands some requirements to enter its borders. It is clear that some are stricter than others but all have some kind of bureaucratic procedure to offer residency.
Normally a DNI or a passport is enough but in some countries a visa or certified and signed documents are necessary. If the student is younger, the paperwork increases, have everything prepared and in order so that you do not have any problems when they ask for it.
5. Improvising is very good when you know where you are going but in this case it is better to be prepared
Arriving in an unfamiliar country, where you don’t know anyone, you don’t know the name of any of the streets and you probably just fumble with the language can be stressful the first few days. Finding a hotel to sleep in until you find definitive accommodation, looking for a suitable language center, visiting the city and meeting people becomes much more difficult if you go without having prepared the ground a little from home.
In this case it is better not to improvise and to have a clear planning, at least during the first days. It seems unbelievable but time passes very quickly and everyone who does not take advantage of it you will have lost.
6. Always start learning English from your basic level, don’t give it up
In all language schools, on the first day of class they give their students a level test to check how much English they know and divide them into classes according to their knowledge.
This step is decisive for your learning as it allows you to move faster and maintain a rhythm in line with that of your classmates, which is crucial to not be demotivated and keep the desire to learn from the first to the last day.
Therefore, do not lie or prepare the test as if it were an exam. The best thing is that they place you at your basic level, the one that you already know and have internalized. You do not want to strut your way to the highest level if it is not really your level because you will be wasting valuable class hours.
7. Kick every corner of the city
To know a city, you have to walk it. Until one day you don’t feel like having your feet ripped from the pain that has caused you to spend hours and hours lost in the city, you won’t be able to say that you know where you are.
Are you afraid of getting lost? The fear is psychological. Look at it this way, so you will surely dare to speak English to ask how to get to your accommodation.
With these 7 tips you can go to the end of the world but if you are one of those who think it is too much, but if you still have doubts, you can download our Guide to study in another country, where you will find all the necessary advice so that nothing fails. To forget about complications, it is best to go to a language course agency abroad