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7 Mar, 2024   |    Up with People

Traveling Abroad: Six Compelling Reasons to Explore the World

No matter where you are in the world, one thing is true: There’s always more to be seen . . .

Whether you’re in high school, college, or still figuring out your path in life, you may have heard about peers seeking out programs for traveling abroad. But why consider this option?

With everything going on in the world today, what we see when we’re scrolling on our phones- why go out in to a world that seems so vast, so dangerous?

Contrary to which, traveling can be an enriching, educational adventure. Exposing yourself to new lands, new faces, new perspectives, and more, can be a pivotal experience in a young person’s life!

Just think: prior to now, you have likely stayed within your comfort zone. And why not? Where we’re comfortable is where our friends and family are: where our whole world exists!

Of course, no one is saying you have to uproot your entire life! Many people spend months abroad for varying reasons; nonetheless, you need to be prepared for the kind of environments and experiences that you will encounter while abroad. But, on the whole, there are many convincing reasons to expand your horizons simply by booking a ticket to fly across the ocean. And the best part? There’s so many programs available for you to consider. But, in case you’re not yet convinced, here’s six reasons to consider one of our unique, educational travel abroad programs!

 1. Get outside of your comfort zone

As a young person, you have likely spent most of your life with family, close friends, a familiar town or city, with your regular hangout spots, favorite restaurants, or cafes. Like many folks, maybe you haven’t left the country or continent before. For many reasons, international travel can seem intimidating at a first glance because of the unfamiliarity of it all. But, taking new chances by traveling to new destinations in foreign countries and continents is all apart of spreading your wings and trying new things. Plus, getting outside of your comfort zone gives you the opportunity to build your confidence and exercise your independence.

2. Relieve stress

A perhaps surprising aspect of getting out of that familiar comfort zone and traveling abroad is stress relief! When you’re thousands of miles away from home, you may find that your worries and troubles from your everyday life have faded into the background. Why? For one, you get to experience a change of scenery in an entirely new cultural society. You are also likely going to be focused on your present experiences, also called living in the moment. This phenomenon experienced while traveling to new destinations has the effect of offering a fresh perspective on your path in life.

3. New friends

Another element that may surprise you: making new friends while abroad internationally! Consider: you’re in a completely new environment, where they speak a foreign language, and the culture is different from what you’re used to– nothing increases your bond with your peers than this experience you’ll share and discover together! The friends you make in an international travel turn into lifelong compatriots more often than you know!

4. Broaden your perspective

Traveling to new locations broadens your perspective on ways of thinking and living in other societies. In addition to broadening your perspective through cultural exposure, having an educational experience abroad helps to develop critical thinking. Basically, critical thinking is the ability to utilize information to produce unbiased and knowledgeable analyses for a given topic. Colleges and universities look for evidence of critical thinking in potential graduates- especially where writing is involved (spoiler: it is always involved! Written communication is as relevant as ever!).

5. Exposure to new cultures, languages (bonus: foods!)

One of the more obvious aspects of international travel: the newfound cultural experiences which include social interactions, language, and of course, lots of delicious, local cuisine! Along your journey, you will surely learn basic words and phrases in the regional language, pick up on social customs and behaviors, and try new dishes that cannot be found back at home. Taking every opportunity to try and learn new things will enrich your experience and give you lots of stories and pictures to share with friends and family.

6. Nurture your independence

You truly will never know what you can accomplish until you try! That is why youth are encouraged to venture out into the world and seek new opportunities for growth, education, and independence. Being far away from home means that you will have to stand on two legs when it comes to making decisions, motivating yourself, keeping things on track, and reaching out for assistance when needed. Doing so will make your time abroad an experience you will continue to look back on for the rest of your life.

If you’re ready to consider making the first step towards your international travel experience, take a look at these upcoming programs in India, the United States, and Latin America.

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