University of Haifa International School Student Blog
1. Be Prepared and know what you’re working with.
This crucial idea seems obvious enough but trust me, complacency is not your friend when you first move into a real alone living experience. This tip is accomplished through utilizing your favorite resource, Google. Use google or any search engine for things like “easy one pan meals” or “how to clean a fridge”. Bookmark these pages and be amazed at how 5 minutes of prep saved you thirty minutes of calling home on the verge of tears because something went awry.
2. Be proactive with your apartment/(flat)mates
Chances are if you are studying abroad is that you don’t have an entire apartment to yourself. This lack of solidarity can lead to a whole slew of problems regarding which common apartment wide appliances or dishes can be used. Putting yourself out there and explaining that you didn’t want to shell out for the overweight bag fee in order to bring your George Foreman grill from home might seem awkward but in actuality this moment of transparency may lead previously off limits goods to become a commonality. And if by chance you are unlucky and the local flatmate says no, you can always ask them where best deals are.
3. Be considerate of others
In the same vein as #2 this new found freedom comes with its fair share of responsibilities. No longer can you guilt your younger brother to clean the table or leave your tray and expect someone to clean it up. As simple as it seems, the golden rule of treat others the way you expect to be treated stands true. Most importantly, if you borrow something make sure you give it back in the same condition you got it! 5 seconds of elbow grease can mitigate any issues
4. Bring a piece of home
While white and other neutrally colored walls may paint an impression of cleanliness leaving them empty for too long can be maddening. That is why it is a great idea to bring
some mementos from home. Whether its pictures of family and friends or a state flag, little reminders of where you came from can make any space feel that much more special.
5. Shop Smart, Make a List
Whether you are getting groceries, clothes or anything else that you may put in your new place, it is integral that you make a list. Having a list allows you to stay focused and prevent the sin of overbuying. This sin is especially hard when the local “shuk” is full of fresh produce, spices and readymade food. Anything to help keep your wallet that much heavier is surely a great tool.
M Greenberg, University of Maryland ’18