#StudyAbroadProblems: 38 Things Only People Who Studied Abroad Will Understand

by Ashley Fern

Studying abroad is a great experience that every college student should take advantage of. I mean, honestly, you get to travel all over the world at the expense of your parents. And by travel, I mean get sh*tfaced in different countries -- if you're currently studying abroad, you might want to check out Trippeze, a new site that will help you maximize this part of the experience.

Sorry, dad… I’m not telling you something you didn’t already know. Most programs are not major-focused, so this is a great time to explore different fields. I took awesome classes, such as Food and Wine Tasting and History of the Italian Mafia.

Oh, and the best part was that they were PASS/FAIL courses. You were able to receive college credit by doing the bare minimum of work, since an A is an equivalent to a C. WOOOO PARTY!

How can you tell if you had an epic abroad experience? You and/or your friends have encountered a majority of these problems:

1. When you gained the Freshman 15 all over again

Going abroad gives a whole new meaning to gaining weight. No one has time to exercise while sightseeing and even fewer people have time to worry about the calories they are consuming when jet-setting across countries. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, you can go start dieting again when you get back to the United States.

2. When drugs were the only thing that could keep you going

How else are you expected to go out at midnight and party until 6 am?

3. When you had to pay to bring carry-on luggage on the plane

It's a carry-on bag; what do you mean I have to pay to keep this on my person? B*tch, you ain't in the USA, anymore; there is no such thing as a free carry-on, except your little purse.

4. When you took your seat on the RyanAir airplane and saw duct tape on the window, this went through your mind...

When you travel essentially every weekend, flights tend to get a little expensive, which is why you settle for RyanAir. This will undoubtedly be the scariest flight of your entire life. But, hey, for 50 euros, who's complaining?

5. When you took a shower at a hostel and emerged dirtier than before

Lord only knows who has showered in that nasty hostel shower before you. Enjoy finding bugs and other people's hair on the walls and in the drain. Barf...

6. When girls wore the same pair of leggings for an entire weekend trip

Oh, but they are, Blair Waldorf. They are! Leggings are great and especially efficient for the female traveler. Pair them with sneakers and you've got a travel outfit; pair them with boots and you've got your outfit for a night out.

7. When you partied at the five-story club in Prague, Gilda in Rome, Opium in Barcelona and Grasshopper in Amsterdam

You hit all the hot spots and surprisingly lived to tell the tale.

8. When you had to figure out how to get four months of sh*t into two bags

One of the greatest parts about studying abroad is bringing home mementos for you and your family. How are you supposed to figure out how to pack all of your essentials into two measly bags and all of your souvenirs? Life can be so hard sometimes...

9. When you had to make spring break plans with all your friends

Spring break is the time when all your friends try to gather together, from whatever cities they are studying in, to party. Whether you're visiting multiple places, hitting up the Canary Islands or Lagos, Portugal, this is never an easy decision.

10. When you had to decide if visiting Israel is actually worth it

Ah, Israel, the place only a select group chooses to travel to. Flights to Israel are expensive, so deciding whether or not to venture there is a problem all its own. If you're Jewish, you always have Birthright to fall back on, but that is a vastly different experience than visiting while you're already abroad.

11. When you had to plan your skydiving trip in the Swiss Alps

OMG! Did someone say default? Typically, the skydiving trip is the first weekend adventure you go on, as all your friends from across Europe gather together at Balmers.

12. When girls tried to figure out wattage for their hair dryers and straighteners

Don't bring your hair straightener or blow dryer abroad with you! Save yourself the hassle of trying to convert wattage and just buy the products there. Split the cost with your roommates and save some euros. Don't try to beat the system or you risk frying off your hair. You've been warned.

13. When you couldn't speak the language of the city you were studying in

How are you supposed to ask for directions if you can't even speak the language? Perhaps this is the reason so many students get lost on a daily basis. Cab drivers are more than aware of this and will always take you the long way because it's not like you know any better.

14. When you had to calculate how much it would cost to fly your bags home after you went shopping

Just give up and add $100 to each bag you're checking. Hey, it happens; what other options do you even have at this point?

15. When you got hated on just for being American

It doesn't matter if you have great manners and are overly polite; you're American and, thus, a joke...

16. When you were mistaken for a prostitute because you're a blonde female

I'm not sure why this is the way it is, but for some reason, this is an issue my blonde friends had while traveling abroad. Awkward.

17. When you attempted to sustain your long distance relationship

Chances are, you and your significant other aren't traveling to the same place, making your relationship suffer. Who knows, maybe you and your partner are different ages and traveling at two separate times. Good luck trying to make that relationship work with minimal phone plans and drastic time differences.

18. When you purposefully picked a pass/fail program so you could drink every night

Who cares about being hungover if a C is equivalent to an A? As long as your credits will transfer to your institution back at home, who gives a sh*t what the actual grade is?! Cheers, motherf*ckers.

19. When you dealt with the ridiculous application process... Visas?

You can actually have this rejected? One of my friends had hers rejected, argued with the representative to the extent she had to actually write a formal apology just to be granted her Visa -- seriously.

20. When you never had money but somehow were able to travel every weekend

You may run out of money on a daily basis, but somehow you can book that excursion to Amsterdam or Croatia.

21. When you either lost your belonging or had them stolen

Don't be quick to laugh at your friend who blacked out and lost his passport; karma will come back for you and your unattended cell phone.

22. When you realized a €4 coffee was actually like a $7 coffee #fail

What? Better stick to those €2 coffee vending machines… They work, don't they? DON'T THEY?!

23. When you could show up to class as hungover as you wanted, as long as you weren't absent

This is the beauty of pass/fail; it's all based on your attendance record. Victory!

24. When you realized McDonald's cost the same as any other meal

Why does this $1 item cost €7? Whatever, I'm getting cheese fries.

25. When you tried to figure out an international phone plan and failed

Do unlimited data plans exist anymore? What's the deal with iMessage? What about BBM?

26. When you found out how difficult buying drugs was

Do you just ask random homeless people? Promoters? How am I supposed to find any weed in this damn place? Good luck if you're in Rome because that was the hardest thing I have ever experienced. Shout out to the Ponte Sisto bridge in Trastevere, Rome where you can essentially ask anyone after the sun goes down.

27. When you couldn't take real showers because you ran out of hot water

Unlike in America, some places in Europe have a limit on the amount of hot water you get daily. Don't think you have time to shave your legs while the conditioner sets in; it's a race against time when showering abroad. May the odds be ever in your favor.

28. When you realized there were no dishwashers and no dryers

WTF are we supposed to do now? What is this the 1920s? Ugh, will our clothes ever go back to fitting or smelling normally? Probably not...

29. When you felt like a freshman because you had to share a bedroom

For the most part, there is no such thing as privacy in student housing. Get ready to double- or triple-up in your bedroom!

30. When you started getting excessive housing noise violations

I'm just trying to live a little! This was a constant issue with student housing, but honestly, what other option was there? It's not like we can afford drinks at the bars or clubs; we have to pregame!

31. When you got tricked into paying for bread as an "appetizer"

In America, this is free… In other countries, apparently, this is not free.

32. When you didn't have to tip at a restaurant, but you did have to pay for tap water

You're going to charge for water? And tap water, nonetheless? But... it comes out of the sink...

33. When you found out water cost more than wine

You want to try and be financially savvy, so you head to the local "grocery store" only to find out that wine costs €2; whereas, any other beverage is at least €5. Oh well, you tried; now give me the wine!

34. When you had to choose whether you should explore the city or stay in bed hungover all day

Should I go to the Vatican today, or should I nurse my hangover with penne alla vodka from Tony's? Mmm… decisions, decisions.

35. When you would need entire menus translated

Formaggio? Pesce? Café con what? But what does it all mean, Basil?! Ugh, just give me a slice of pizza and let's call it a day.

36. When there were no English television channels

Netflix doesn't work, so what are we supposed to do during our down time? Don't think you'll be watching any television since you can't speak the language, anyway.

37. When it finally occurred to you that it was your last weekend abroad

There's no Loco Lunes in America? What do I do on a Monday? Study? This is so depressing...

38. When a new slew of people left for abroad, this is how you felt...

TAKE ME WITH YOU!!! Every Instagram of you on the Ponte Vecchio or in front of the Sagrada Família is really tugging at my heart strings.

Top Photo Courtesy: Facebook