Written by Florentina Badea

When you decide to study abroad, you are also making a commitment to prioritize your study as in most of the cases it requires some financial efforts. In the same time, you want to have the best experience, so you also need to find time for experimenting like meeting the locals, learning their language, knowing their culture, do things for the first time, make some new international friends and go out with them. It’s never easy to do them both, but with a good time management and some planning, you can find a great way to balance them and make it work. Trust me, it’s worth the struggle!

Last year I started following a master program in the Netherlands and it was the first time when I left my country. During my first master year, there was this amazing deal of the train tickets. Imagine this: you would pay only 7 euros for a round trip ticket for a day and you also could stop in the stations between your departure and arrival stations.

There was only one catch: it required to find other nine persons, and only then you could benefit from this offer. So, there was a great opportunity to invite my friends or colleagues to travel with me. Not every time our schedules would match, but social media platforms were so amazing in finding other strangers willing to travel in the same day since most of the students from all the country and locals were using them for the same goal. Since you didn’t need to be at the same time with them in the trains, that was really helpful for traveling even by yourself.

As my weekdays were full of classes and self-study, I decided that traveling should be a part of living this experience at its fullest, so I decided to go to a new place whenever I had some free time. This is how I managed to visit up until 14 cities for several times apart from the city where I am living, make connections with other students from those cities. In Delft, I meet a woman who insisted to help me take a photo in front of the great blue heart and we ended up talking about our lives. Not only she was working in Human Resources and she was willing to help me a job after my graduation, but she also told me that I should visit her, guess where in Brussels! The world is so small, and the people are so surprising!

I’ve always been told that I should use my weekends for having some rest instead of traveling because those cities are still going to be there, so no reason to rush. Lucky that I didn’t take their advice and I continued to explore, to visit museums and join a different kind of events. In the present, those deals are gone since the beginning of this year and visiting all those places would cost me a fortune now.
So seize the moment, take the opportunity when you see it. Don’t postpone until tomorrow, or next month or next year. Do it now, do it today!