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When in Rome…

The following is a special needs program update from College Living Experience | CLE | Choose Your Future. You may also click here to read the original article on the main program website.

by Christopher Gregor, CLE Fort Lauderdale

travels abroad

How would you feel traveling to a different country?

Would you be confused by the new culture? Most people look at other cultures as different and hard to understand. There are multiple ways to familiarize one’s self with another culture. One way is to just use the internet to do research on your destination’s culture. Another approach is to be prepared, perhaps trying out the culture’s customs before you go. But most of Ordering food in a foreign countryall, make sure to keep an open mind when traveling: listen to new music, attend events, try new foods, try new clothing styles, etc. Traveling is all about opening up to the experience and the culture.

Are you afraid you might offend someone? A lot of travelers are worried they might make a mistake when communicating or commit some other unknown offense. Don’t be so hard on yourself. Take time to think and even find the humor in your mishaps. For example: if you were in restaurant abroad and you wanted to order something that looked appetizing, but asked incorrectly, make sure to laugh it off and you will see others will not be offended. It is always helpful to socialize and learn the language. However, do not isolate yourself from your new peers for fear of offending or miscommunicating. Most mistakes from foreigners are understood and forgiven readily by the locals. Especially when it comes from a place of genuine curiosity and respect.

Do you know how to keep yourself healthy and safe?

Of course you do when you are home, but when in an unfamiliar environment, you have to re-evaluate what you need to do to get by.

traveling to a foreign country

  • Do research on the types of areas you are visiting to know if they are safe.
  • Travel with a companion or in a group.
  • Pack a first aid kit and have it handy at all times.
  • Always be aware of your surroundings.
  • Give yourself plenty of time to adapt to the new environment.

Traveling can be gratifying and can open horizons in ways that nothing else can. You can ensure your travels abroad are as rich and deep as possible if you prepare yourself for the journey. Keeping these tips in mind will make your experience in another country unforgettable.

Travel tips

Newsletter Articles – May 2015

Mt Fuji

This summer, a group of CLE students will embark on our most exciting overseas trip to date. It’s one you’ve all been hoping for (yes, we do pay attention to what you’re interested in!). Give me a mental drum roll, please—and make it a taiko drum roll—because this summer we will be visiting Japan!
No offense to Ireland and Spain, but this will be our most sensational international journey yet. CLE students have visited various places in Europe and South America before, but we are braving new frontiers this year. To provide students with more variety and greater chances to expand their horizons, we will hit a whole different continent this time around. Students, take a moment to thank your parents for their feedback in the trip-planning surveys. They had a big part in choosing the destination.

Toiletry bag for travel

Nothing motivates a traveler for the perfect trip – business or pleasure – like having all the items he or she needs neatly packed and ready to go. Regardless of the reason to travel, the point is that you are going to be somewhere for a short time, and unfortunately, all possessions cannot be brought along. So pack a light, simply organized piece of luggage that will solve your basic hygiene, fashion, entertainment, and even safety needs while you are away.

CLE trip to Ireland

Anyone who has set about to travel abroad is in search of something. It could be as simple as temporary respite from the mundane, beckoning the call of long-sought adventures, or answering more ethereal questions of who am I and what is my place in this great, big world? But really, let’s be honest. Deep at the center of all of our motives behind traveling abroad are the simple questions of where are we going? When are we going to get there? And what are we going to eat??


Every year, CLE offers its students the opportunity to travel to new, exciting locations around the world. This year, we asked our students, parents, and staff for suggestions on the 2015 trip, and the results are in: we are heading to Japan!

As exciting as traveling may be, it’s important to remember that preparing for the trip is an integral part of enjoying yourself abroad. After all, what fun is experiencing a new culture if you get a call from your roommate letting you know that your electric bill is overdue or that your unwashed dishes are starting to get moldy?

So in the spirit of being prepared, here is a quick checklist of must-do’s for anyone planning to visit Japan or travel anywhere this year.

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