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Study Abroad

Fee & Charges for Abroad

BES is committed to provide excellent advise to our students both during their Admission and Visa processes. Our initial student counseling and advise is often free for all countries. Student and parent entry to special events such as Roadshows, University Seminars, Pre-Orientation functions, Spot Admission interview sessions are also free. Depending on the institution and the country the student applies, there could be an application processing fees between A$ 100-250 (equivalent) charged for couriers and other expenses. Students are given precise break-up of these fees along with receipts for such transactions.

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Making the Most of The Study Abroad

One of the main reasons I think any student goes abroad is so that he/ she can see the world - hence "abroad". As I've learned, it's not always the cheapest or easiest of tasks, but it is possible, even on a tight budget. I made many mistakes in my earlier travels, but having been on many trips to numerous countries on both sides of the globe, I can confidently say I've gotten pretty good at stretching a dollar while traveling away from my abroad university. This section came about after I began putting together all of the knowledge I had acquired over the course of my time abroad into one place. I've learned exactly how to fly, sleep, and eat cheap, the best way to make your way around large and unfamiliar cities and how to make it home in one piece. While I can't give you a step-by-step budget plan, I hope the information I have provided will help you see the world without breaking your bank account. I've done most of the grunt work for you, now all you need to do is put my advice into practice. 

Souvenirs

Everyone wants to bring a little piece of their travels back home with them. The problem is that souvenirs can be expensive, they take up room in your suitcases and carryon bag, and are often times just cheap trinkets that will either break before you get home or collect dust when you realize you have no use for them. You know the kinds of things I’m talking about – paperweights, key chains, picture frames, shot glasses, items of clothing, coffee mugs, etc. I’m not saying you shouldn’t buy those things, but if you’re a student on a budget who doesn’t have any room left in the one carryon you’re allowed to take on your flight, then those aren’t really practical options. Here is what I’ve done, and have found it to be both cost and space efficient. Follow this motto – don’t buy, collect. What you don’t realize is that you already have a handful of reminders of your trip without having to buy that cheap snow globe with Buckingham Palace in it. Think about it: You rode the Tube in London – public transportation tickets are small and free. You bought a ticket to get into the Coliseum in Rome – why not keep it as a souvenir rather than wasting money on a Coliseum paperweight? Maybe you have a pamphlet from the tour of the Guinness factory in Dublin – sure, buying a couple of pint glasses from the gift store are great, but do you really need a fancy cup to bring back memories? Collecting memorabilia from the attractions you visited and the events you attended can easily be collaged into a scrapbook that will last a lifetime. They can also create a really neat-looking shadowbox frame that you can hang in your bedroom once you’re back home, or in your office once you land your first job.

So start collecting. What do you collect you ask? Here’s a list:
  • Maps
  • Public transportation ticket stubs
  • Restaurant menus (a lot of times places will sell them to you for a penny)
  • Restaurant receipts
  • Postcards
  • Plane tickets
  • Napkins with logos
  • Coasters (especially from places like breweries)
  • Tour pamphlets
  • Bottle labels

 

Fly and Sleep for Cheap

You can save money before you even step foot on a plane or in a foreign country by researching things like flights, hostels and restaurants well ahead of time. A little preparation and research in the beginning will end up saving you a lot of money in the long run. It’s often about waiting for the right season to travel, the right day to leave and the right hostel for the right price. Touring a city or country at the right time of year will undoubtedly factor into whether or not you break your wallet.

1. Find cheap flights. There’s no real trick to this. Unfortunately, prices of seats fluctuate right up until the day before the flight. Just remember, cheaper fares can often be found at low cost carriers such as Ryanair, EasyJet, KLM and Wizz Air. Use travel services like STA Travel, Wegolo, Kayak, and the travel agency at your abroad university (if they have one) to assist you in finding the best deals. Compare results with major travel search engines like Expedia, Orbitz, and Travelocity to make sure you’re getting the best deals.  I don’t recommend paying for things like priority boarding or travelers insurance. Every seat is usually the same on low cost carriers, so priority boarding isn’t worth it, and most travelers insurance provided by the airlines won’t reimburse you if you miss your flight.

 

2. Couch surfing : Now there are a few different ways to do this. If you are lucky like me, there are other students from your home institution who are studying abroad in other countries. Instead of staying in a hostel, see if you can crash on their couch. They don’t have a couch? Crash on their floor. It’s not the most comfortable surface, but with the cheapest hostel probably running at a minimum of 20 euro/ pounds a night, who cares.

 

3. Go in the offseason. So maybe you want to visit Germany, and you think to yourself, “I’ll go during Oktoberfest”. Well if your sole goal is to go to Oktoberfest, then by all means, go during the busiest season of the year. If your goal is to actually to see a lot of Germany on a tight budget, plan your trip at an off-peak time instead. For example, hostels during Oktoberfest triple in price, so if Oktoberfest isn’t a priority, then choose a different season that will have cheaper rates. This applies to all countries with major tourist seasons. Because business is slow during the offseason (which can vary from location to location) many hostels, airlines and local restaurants will dramatically decrease prices to attract business. Accommodation and transportation are probably going to be your biggest expenditures, but don’t let this deter you from traveling because there are many ways to get around the steep costs of flying and lodging. Just remember; a little research and a little patience before you book will make a big difference.

Premium Admission Counselling Services

We help students find solutions suited to their profile, ensuring that the best education and career pathway is selected. We treat every student as an individual and offer a tailored package of services to meet their goals in life. By assessing each individual’s needs carefully we provide assistance in identifying universities across the globe that best match the student’s personal, academic and financial profile. The advice provided is non-commercial and is not limited to our partner universities.

Services : 

  • Student Profiling
  • Short listing of Universities
  • Documentation for Application
  • Editing of Documents
  • Scholarship Assistance
  • Help in preparing University Applications
  • Admission Interview Preparation
  • Visa Interview Preparation
  • Visa Filing
  • Pre–departure Brief

Operational Countries:

  • USA
  • Canada
  • France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Singapore
  • Switzerland
  • Sweden
  • Netherlands
  • Spain
  • Korea
  • Japan
  • Norway
  • Hong Kong
  • China
  • Russia

Preparing for Study Abroad

Pre - Departure Finances :

Make sure you have all of your finances taken care of well ahead of time. This includes making sure all of your financial commitments at home are being addressed and you’ve researched how you’re going to maintain and organize your finances when you’re abroad. Confirm that all of your billing for school costs has been covered for tuition as well as housing. If you aren’t paying your home school directly, verify that your payments to the study abroad program or school are arranged. Let all scholarship sponsors know where you will be and to whom they should address scholarship checks. If you’re getting some sort of federal loan and/or scholarship, confirm that you’ve completed all of the necessary paperwork well before you leave in case you still need to return any forms. Lastly, make sure you let your bank know that you won’t be in the country for an extended period of time. This prevents them from freezing your account when they see that someone (who they wrongly assume isn’t you) is traveling around the world with your card. I’ll get into how to open a bank account overseas a little bit later, but for now, here are the basics of foreign banking.

  • ATM machines overseas typically accept most U.S. bank ATM cards. The most popular are MasterCard, VISA, CIRRUS and NYCE. If you don’t have one of those, just call customer service or get in touch with a bank representative who will tell you if your card is valid overseas. Find an ATM at the location you plan to study abroad.
  • Withdrawal fees are hard to avoid, but it’s better to know ahead of time what you’re spending every time you use your card so be sure to do some research. Some banks are part of the Global ATM Alliance which allows customers of their banks to use their ATM card or debit card at another bank within the Global ATM Alliance with no international ATM access fees. For example, Bank of America fees will not be charged for Barclay’s branches in the UK or Deutsche Bank branches in Germany.
  • Wiring money is always an option, but that is way too expensive in most cases.
  • Traveler’s checks are still an option although they’re quickly becoming obsolete. If it’s something you’re looking into, try to get them in the currency of your abroad country so you aren’t affected by the exchange rate.

 

Final Notes:

When you’re heading abroad, I suggest having at least $300 in foreign currency for emergencies and basic costs like food and other necessities that you’ll need when you get there. When I went to Scotland I took 170 British Pounds (GBP), and when heading to Beijing, I brought 2,000 Renminbi (RMB).

Study Abroad Exams

There are a few exams which help gain admissions to foreign universities and institutes. These exams include a variety of standardized tests for pursuing higher studies overseas. UK, US, Australia and Canada are the most preferred study abroad destinations. New Zealand, Switzerland, Russia, Germany and France are also emerging as new hot spots for overseas education.

Eligibility for Study Abroad Exams :

Qualification and age limit varies as different study abroad examinations have different criteria for admission in different foreign institutes. Criteria may also vary from country to country. For admissions to a science or any other masters program in UK universities, students are required to have a valid TOEFL /IELTS score. Australia also follows the same rule whereas most of the universities and colleges in US consider GRE scores and other standardized test for admissions. Students with 70% or above marks in English in their 10th and 12th standard may be relinquished from English requirement but they must usually have IELTS score above 5.5 bands depending on the level in order to apply for student visa.

Admission Process and Study Abroad Exam Pattern :

Admission is based on the entrance test designed to evaluate the students skills rather than the quantitative knowledge. The questions in these tests measure the ability of students to solve problem and not knowledge of facts. Each exam varies in test pattern; score pattern and require different preparation strategy. The scholarship amount also depends upon the performance in the entrance exams.

  • GRE: Graduate Record Exams
  • GMAT: Graduate Management Admission Test
  • TOEFL: Test of English as a Foreign Language
  • IELTS: International English Language Testing System
  • USMLE: United States Medical Licensure Examination
  • SAT: Scholastic Aptitude Test

Visa Information

Visa for Australia :

Students traveling to Australia for studies need to apply for an appropriate student visa, as there are different visas offered to different students. A primary or secondary school student’s visa is different from the visa offered to a student of vocational education or a student of postgraduate research. Thus one should carefully analyze as to the category they fit in. To begin with, a student must be accepted for a full-term study in a registered course by a registered organization (under Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students). Besides submitting the essential documents at the time of applying for the visa, one must fulfill the following criteria to be eligible for a students visa:

  • Sound Financial capacity (ability to pay for the air fare, tuition fee and living costs)
  • Proficiency in English
  • Be of good character
  • Be of sound health
  • Have a health insurance through the Overseas Student Health Cover (UNI)

Have no pending debt to the Commonwealth of Australia or have made provisions to repay the same

Visa for Canada :

Besides acquiring a students visa to study in Canada, one also has to meet the requirements of the Canadian Immigration Act and Regulations. Only successful compliance with the same will yield a student permission to enter Canada.One needs to submit the following documents along with their visa application:

  • Completed Student Application form.
  • Completed Supplementary Questionnaire (students and postdoctoral researchers)
  • Official acceptance letter from the chosen Canadian university, college or technical institute.
  • In case plan to study in Quebec, a Certificate of Acceptance from the province of Quebec.
  • TOEFL/IELTS scores, if applicable.
  • Passport, valid for at least one year from the planned date of entry to Canada, plus valid passports of any accompanying dependents.
  • Bank draft for the applicable visa processing fees.

A student must substantiate his/her ability to pay for the tuition fee, pay for day-to-day living for himself and his family, and pay for return ticket back to the country of origin once the program comes to an end. Once the essential documents have been submitted, a student may be called for an interview with a Canadian Visa Officer. Thereafter a student along with his accompanying family members would be instructed on taking a medical examination. On successful completion of the required formalities, the candidate would be issued a visa if there are no other concerns with the application.

Visa for New Zealand :

  • You require the following documents to apply for a student visa:
  • Offer letter from university/college
  • Application form
  • TOEFL/ IELTS score sheet
  • Copy of academic and work experience documents
  • Valid passport
  • One recent passport size photograph
  • Medical reports

The visa office usually takes around two to three weeks to process an application. Once all the requirements are met, you will be advised in writing that your application has been approved in principle, following which you will have to submit within a month an evidence of payment of course fees for one year and complete all other requirements for the visa to be issued.

Visa for Singapore :

The student receives the offer letter along with the student visa kit. This contains a student contract form and the form 16 for visa. Student then completes all documentation accordingly and submits the file to the agent who further couriers the same to the university where the student has applied. The institute on behalf of the student applies for the student pass. This can be done online by the institute using the SOLAR system. The application for the visa must be submitted two months before the commencement of the academic session. At the end of this period, successful students are issued an in-principle approval letter by the ICA, which includes the student’s visa. A student may enter Singapore using the ICA letter and complete the remaining formalities at the ICA Building in Singapore. At this stage, students need to furnish the following documents:

  • Students valid passport
  • One passport size color photograph (on white background)
  • A duly signed copy of eForm 16
  • A copy of the in-principle approval letter
  • Copy of academic and work experience documents
  • Bank statements, Pay slips etc. 

Visa for USA :

Though there are three different types of visas that are extended to the students’ category, the F visa is applicable to the students who intend on going for a full term course in colleges approved by the Department of Homeland Security. While F-1 visa is for the student, F-2 visa is issued for the student’s spouse/child, who can accompany the student but cannot seek employment in the US. A candidate for F visa must be able to establish the following:

  • Have a residence abroad that one doesn't intend on abandoning
  • Present form I-20 A-B (also an electronic version of the same through SEVIS) that authenticates acceptance of the student at the DHS approved college.
  • Proof of SEVIS I-901 fee payment
  • Sufficient knowledge of English
  • Copy of academic and work experience documents
  • Bank statements, Pay slips etc.

Where Do You Want To Study Abroad

Where Do You Want to Study Abroad? There’s a variety of factors that can impact where you want to study abroad. One of the most obvious will be whether or not your home institution has a set list of approved schools to which they send students. My college has about 20 foreign schools from which students can choose; however, if you wanted to study in a country in which the native language wasn’t English, you had to be proficient in that language. With those guidelines, my options were narrowed down to the UK, Ireland and Australia. I chose Scotland since it had one of the better schools in the UK, as well as some of the best golf in the world.

 

Here’s a list of other things you may want to consider:

Language: Are you going to be studying a language in a particular country? If not, will you be comfortable in a country where English isn’t the native language? It’s not impossible, and if you’re determined to go to a non-English speaking country, and are confident in your ability to communicate and find your way, by all means go for it.

Time Table: Summer, Semester, or Year? See above.

Type of Program: Does your school have the type of program you are looking for? Is there a possibility you might have to go through an independent program? Are you comfortable participating in a program where you won’t know any other students? Which programs can you afford? How will you finance the cost of the study abroad program?

Major requirements: Will you be able to complete any major requirements while abroad? Will your degree progress suffer if you can’t? Will your credits transfer either way?

Weather: This one’s pretty easy. What type of climate do you want to live in? If your idea of being abroad is on a beach under palm trees, then Moscow probably isn’t for you.

Living Situation: Do you want to live with a host family or in a dorm? There are positives and negatives to both.

Studying abroad and living in a dorm : In a dorm, you are more likely to interact with people your own age, who are going through the same adjustments you’re going through, and who can relate with you on a greater level. In most dorms, there’s no curfew, and living in a dorm requires you to be much more independent.

Studying abroad and living with a host family : If you’re studying a language, living with a host family will vastly increase the amount of interactive situations in which you’ll speak that   language. There’s also a greater possibility that you’ll experience more local culture first-hand.

Local Life: Do you want to study abroad in a big city or small town? What is the campus like? Are there any famous landmarks, sights or tourist attractions close by that you'd like to visit? How's the night life? What is there to do when you’re not in class?

Travel: How close will you be to an airport? Are there low cost airlines flying out of those airports? Do you want to visit nearby countries/cities in your free time? If so, are you close to countries/cities you want to visit? How long will it take you to travel to different locations?

Food: Do you like the food common to that country? Can you get by on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? While this shouldn’t be the deciding factor, I would go somewhere where you can appreciate local cuisine as it’s definitely a big part of the overall immersion experience. Talk to people from your school or just people that you know that have been there before and ask their opinion. They’ll probably be very happy to share their experience. The most important thing is to go with your gut feeling. If there’s a place that you’ve wanted to go since you were nine years old, then go. Do the research needed to be sure you know what you’re getting into so you can be as prepared and confident as possible when making your decision.

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