So you want to study abroad, but you want to travel everywhere and the world is so amazing and full of adventure and how will you ever choose!? Well now, you can refuse to choose! Study abroad programs have gotten so much more creative to suit revolutionary students like yourself who are eager to break boundaries (literally) and live life without borders. So prepare to give your passport a workout and knock out several countries on your bucket list in one fell swoop. If you’re eager to be handed the greatest course syllabus of all-time, you’re ready for multi-country study abroad!
While multi-country study abroad programs are available all across the globe, each placement comes with a different set of people, food, landscapes, and learning experiences.
Europe is one of the most popular regions to do a multi-country study abroad program because there is so much culture tightly packed together. Students full of joie de vivre can easily score double-digit passport stamps soaking in the art and history hopping from coastal cities in Spain all the way to the Louvre in Paris. Indulge in cheese fondue in Switzerland and end practicing your Italian skills over gelato in Rome in your free time.
Central America is another compact area of the world where borders are just a hop, skip, and a jump away. A multi-country study abroad program could start with a week in Nicaragua, and end with a stay in Guatemala or Costa Rica. As the getaway paradise of the world, it won’t be difficult to indulge in vacation views and activities to break up classes. Even jet over to the Caribbean for some island hopping mon!
Southeast Asia has everything from developing countries to hip, modern cities. Begin your free time feasting on some of the best (and cheapest!) seafood, riding bicycles through French-inspired streets, or fall in love with tropical beaches, yummy curries, and incense-filled Buddhist temples. There are plenty of picturesque opportunities in Thailand that should be included on any traveler’s bucket list, while Cambodia gives students the option to hike through Angkor Wat, and Vietnam students can visit Hanoi and Halong Bay all in one program!
Multi Country Study Abroad Programs
No matter what your career interests are, there is a multi-country study abroad program for nearly every major in the course catalog. If you’re still deciding what major to land on, take a gander at some of these popular multi-country study abroad programs:
Multi-country study abroad especially prepares you for a global career, making some of the most popular programs in business and international relations. Go in with an open mind as you explore different cultural contexts in each location and how they influence your field of work. You’ll develop professional skills that are fine-tuned because of your deeper insight into the work environment.
It turns out that the study of humanities and multi-country study abroad goes together like Nutella and a spoon. Environmental studies or conservation are popular fields for students who want to experience multiple countries. Sustainability and environmental preservation are global issues at core, and multi-country study abroad programs will introduce you to new ways to tear down barriers and build up a healthier planet.
Communication manifests itself in very different ways around the world, making language studies and journalism popular subjects of study across multiple countries. Supplementing these studies with international experience is the way to gain a newfound perspective that will open doors to higher levels of cultural competence and inevitably change the way you personally communicate.
Scholarships for Multi Country Programs
Before embarking on a multi-country study abroad program, it’s important to compare what’s included in program fees. Almost all programs include tuition and room and board, but other essentials, like transportation, will be included at varying degrees.
The big Debbie downer of multi-country study abroad programs is the cost. While some locations are cheaper than others ($1000 could last a month in Southeast Asia or Central America, while Europe might swallow it in a week), you will inevitably spend more due to longer placements and multiple destinations.
If you just wanna make the world dance and forget about the price tag, check out what scholarships might be available and consider FundMyTravel to start a fundraising campaign. Don’t worry, though — you’ll return home feeling even richer than ever.
Multi Country Accommodation Options
For most multi-country study abroad programs, housing is provided. Most multi-country programs will provide accommodation with host families, who will offer delicious home-cooked meals in addition to a roof over your head each night. However, there are also dormitory options or hostel stays, depending on which part of the world you’re in. For those looking to immerse themselves as much as possible and learn the language, stick with the authenticity of homestays and treat yourself to a few extra conversations over the dinner table.
Visa requirements differ from country to country. Many students will be able to get tourist visas, which are valid for 60 to 120 days in most countries. But every location has different visa fees and paperwork, so make sure you do your research in advance. Program advisors are also there to give you the inside scoop. For more information, be sure to peruse GoAbroad’s Embassy Directory.
GoAbroad Insider Tips
Holistic Approach. It is hard to have a full-on grasp of environmental issues, business practices, art and history, or whatever subject you’re stoked about, from a truly global perspective if you have only learned about it at your home university and in a single foreign country. Instead, why not deepen your understandings of how multiple cultures approach the same issues?
Travel Light. Constantly moving between countries, especially with larger groups, is no easy feat. You will be lugging around all your belongings on a regular basis so it’s best to save ‘future you’ from self-sabotage and pack light. This is easier said than done, especially when you have to consider the local customs and cultural expectations when it comes to clothing in each country you plan to visit.
Say “Bye bye” to comfort. Don't you hate when you just start to feel comfortable in a place, and then you have to up and move? Sometimes a multi-country study abroad program seems like just that. Starting from scratch all the time can leave you flustered and burnt out from repetitively getting zapped by culture shock!
Street Smarts. Yes, how to beat a hangover is a lifelong skill you can still learn if you opt to stay on campus, but real street smarts come from studying abroad in multiple countries. Learning how to overcome a language barrier, navigate a foreign land, and be self-reliant and proactive are real life skills you will develop much more quickly abroad.
Studying abroad in multiple countries allows you to set your own course, but the most important thing you will learn, is that learning is universal.