A+ housing tips for international students

Learn how to make the most of your opportunity and enjoy a successful experience.

Kevin Crain

By Kevin Crain

Female student holding books in front of a school building

Studying abroad soon? What an exciting opportunity! Before you pack your school supplies, we’ve got some tips for international students. After all, you’ll face a lot of challenges. 

For instance, adapting to new housing can be especially hard. Finding the right place to call home is key to a great experience. You need to be comfortable to be successful while studying overseas. 

That’s why Studentground’s student housing program is so popular. You’ll enjoy: 

  • Blueground’s network of over 15,000 premium, furnished apartments
  • Exclusive access to discounted rates
  • Flexible durations, ‘rent-free’ periods when you’re on a break
  • The best neighborhoods near major campuses

Want more tips like this? Keep reading! We’re providing all kinds of advice for navigating student life abroad – from choosing the right location to fostering a welcoming environment. Let’s find out how to make your study abroad experience amazing. 

Research, research, research

housing in DC woman sitting on floor with back to couch searching for apartments on laptop

It’s so important we typed it three times. Yep, looking into student housing options is crucial before you set off. Knowing your choices can save time and stress. So familiarize yourself with the types of accommodations available in your new city. That could be furnished modern apartments, houses, dorms, condos, and more! 

Consider key factors such as location, budget, and safety. Your distance from the university and how you’ll get there is also something to think about. The bottom line? Make sure your new home is convenient and fits your needs.

Use resources like university websites, student forums, and international student services. These platforms offer valuable housing details. They can help you make informed decisions and find the best accommodation.

On-campus vs off-campus housing

temporary housing NYC calm bedroom with view

Ah, the eternal debate: On-campus or off? Choosing between the two housing options has pros and cons. For example, on-campus housing offers convenience and a sense of community. However, off-campus housing gives you more independence and is often more affordable. Let’s lay it out more fully for you.

On-campus housing: 

  • Great for proximity to classes and campus facilities
  • Less commute time 
  • Easy access to libraries, gyms, and dining halls
  • Helps you connect with other students

Off-campus housing:

  • More freedom 
  • Potentially lower costs
  • Diverse options that suit your preferences and budget
  • Experience the local culture

Learn the local customs

stylish apartment with a group of friends around a coffee table

Here’s your key to a smooth housing experience (and one of our biggest tips for international students): try to understand local customs. Respecting cultural norms helps you build good relationships with roommates and neighbors. Plus, knowing about these local practices can make your stay enjoyable.

Learn about acceptable behaviors, quiet hours, and shared spaces. These can vary widely from country to country. University orientation sessions, online student groups, and talking to locals can help a ton.

Want to avoid misunderstandings? Be sure to chat with roommates and neighbors about expectations. These can vary from person to person and region to region. By being proactive, you’ll learn how to respect each other’s cultural backgrounds. Your living environment will be way more harmonious because of this open communication.

Manage your money

leather wallet with money being taken out

Creating a budget is an important part of managing your housing and living costs. Start by listing all your expenses. Include rent, utilities, groceries, and transportation. This will give you a clear picture of your financial needs.

Then, track your expenses regularly to stay within your budget. Look for cost-effective solutions for utilities and groceries. Use energy-saving tips and shop at discount stores. Every bit of savings adds up and helps you keep expenses low.

Another idea? Consider seeking part-time job opportunities if you’re allowed to do so. This can help supplement your living expenses. In fact, many universities offer on-campus jobs for students. Balancing work and study can be difficult, but it can also provide much-needed extra income.

Click with roommates

2 happy women walking on city street with bikes

If you want your student housing experience to be as pleasant as possible, remember to build positive relationships with your roommates. Start with open communication. Talk to each other about your expectations, habits, and boundaries right from the jump. This helps prevent misunderstandings and ensures everyone is on the same page.

Sharing a space means compromising. That’s true whether you’re staying in a two-bedroom New York City apartment or a three-bedroom Paris flat. You need to be willing to adjust your routines. Splitting things like cleaning and grocery shopping creates a balanced household. Maybe even think about establishing a chore schedule to keep things running smoothly.

Whether you’re living with other international students or locals, there’s a chance to make lasting friendships and expand your global network. It’s something to look forward to! So really take this chance to embrace the diversity and connect with people from different backgrounds.

Explore your area

Berlin from above

For international students, getting a sense of the neighborhood around your student housing is part of the experience. Get to know the nearby amenities. Discover shops, cafes, and recreational facilities. This makes daily life more memorable and fun.

Also, familiarize yourself with public transportation options. Knowing bus and train routes can save time and money. It also allows you to explore the city easily when you’re not studying or going to class. Just try to visit popular spots and hidden gems alike, so you see both sides.

Immersing in the local culture enriches your student experience. That’s why another of our tips for international students is to engage with locals and attend community events. You’ll feel more at home and deepen your perspective. Make the most of your adventure abroad!

Take advantage of university services

two women sit at a table and discuss an issue

Colleges and universities offer numerous resources for international students. Use them! Ask questions of the staff at housing offices and get counseling services. They offer vital support and guidance.

University housing offices can help with accommodation concerns. Whether you’re moving to the US from Europe or to Asia from South America, they’re there to help answer your questions. Don’t hesitate to reach out for help.

International student support services are crucial. They understand the unique challenges you face. If you encounter housing-related issues, seek their guidance promptly. They’ll help you find solutions and make your experience smoother.

Enjoy your academic adventure

woman living in madrid

We hope these tips for international students help! Remember, adapting to a new living environment takes time and patience. Stay open-minded and flexible. It’s all part of the experience!

Looking for even more information on student housing? Be sure to check out these tips for finding student accommodation. Or browse Blueground’s huge portfolio of furnished, student-friendly apartments

Kevin Crain

Kevin Crain

Kevin Crain is a writer from Dallas, Texas. He’s dedicated to helping every Blueground guest live like a local and make their apartment feel like home. His favorite topics include active experiences, bucket list essentials, and hidden gems in cities around the world.