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What Memories Will You Make?. BOBCATS ABROAD. o. Your Rights, Responsibilities, and Safety While Abroad. Health Safety Culture Tips for Travelers. Personal Responsibility. Know Your Host Country Know Your Own Country Know Yourself and Your Surroundings

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Your Rights, Responsibilities, and Safety While Abroad

  • Health
  • Safety
  • Culture
  • Tips for Travelers
personal responsibility
Personal Responsibility

Know Your Host Country

Know Your Own Country

Know Yourself and Your Surroundings

Log on to the US State Department website: http://travel.state.gov/travel/

for information on:

Worldwide Caution Public Announcements

Travel Tips

Consular Information Sheets

Also check out The Center for Global Education’s Risk Factors and

Strategies to Reduce Risk:


tips to increase your personal safety
Tips to Increase Your Personal Safety
  • Don’t wear expensive jewelry.
  • Don’t drive while abroad.
  • Don’t dress like an American.
  • Do walk with a purpose.
  • Do purchase a money belt.
  • Do diversify your money.
health promotion
Health Promotion
  • Alcohol and Drugs
  • Safe Sex
  • Sexual Assault
mental wellness abroad
Mental Wellness Abroad
  • Signs and symptoms of culture shock
  • Coping strategies
  • Resources
  • Talk to your faculty director
  • if you are struggling
  • Re-entry shock
staying healthy overseas
Staying Healthy Overseas
  • Tips for staying healthy overseas
  • Pack a first-aid kit.
  • Resources:
    • Vaccinations and Prescriptions for travel destinations:

The Center for Disease Control http://www.cdc.gov/travel/

    • International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers: http://www.iamat.org/
    • World Health Organization: http://www.who.int/en/
hth insurance
HTH Insurance

Ohio University requires you to have insurance through HTH, which provides comprehensive medical coverage.

You can extend coverage beyond your program dates.

Call HTH collect from a landline for assistance.

office of judiciaries
Office of Judiciaries

While abroad, you are bound to:

  • The Ohio University Student Code of


  • All laws of the host country
  • Program rules and regulations
  • The Conditions of Participation
safety and your study abroad program
Safety and Your Study Abroad Program
  • The OEA receives daily news and security updates from the State Department.
  • The OEA communicates regularly with overseas partners and faculty directors.
  • We have emergency response guidelines and procedures in place.
  • You can reach someone at Ohio University 24 hours a day through OUPD.
  • The OEA is happy to address any concerns you may have.
emergencies abroad
Emergencies Abroad
  • Distinguish between minor and major emergencies.
    • Lost passport vs. car accident
    • Urgency– can it wait?
  • Stay calm and keep your perspective
  • Utilize local resources first
    • Faculty director = 1st point of contact
your allies in an emergency
Your Allies in an Emergency


  • Faculty director / program director
  • Law enforcement/government agents
  • Office of Education Abroad Staff/OUPD
  • Parents, guardians, or family


  • Hospitals, Medical clinics
  • Various transportation facilities

(airport, train station, etc.)

  • Police station/U.S. Embassy


  • Emergency contact card
  • HTH Health Insurance card
  • Passport/Identification
  • Credit card, cash &/or traveler’s checks
eco friendly study abroad
Eco-Friendly Study Abroad
  • Conserve resources. (water, electricity)
  • Consider carbon offsets (http://www.terrapass.com)
  • Learn about environmental issues.
  • Support eco-friendly tourism.
  • Support local shops, restaurants and hotels instead of chains.
  • Take note of sustainability practices abroad.
political discussions anti americanism abroad
Political Discussions & Anti-Americanism Abroad
  • Politics + alcohol = trouble
  • Avoid - or if that fails - defuse confrontations
  • Avoid political rallies and protests
how the u s embassy can help
How the U.S. Embassy can help

Register online with the U.S. Embassy in your host country.

This will make it easier to contact you in case of an emergency.

  • When registering online remember to include the Office of Education Abroad under “Permission to Disclose”, so that we can be informed and assist if necessary.
  • Services provided by US Embassies:
  • Issue emergency passports
  • Locate US citizens abroad
  • Emergency evacuation
  • Lender of last resort for American citizens in financial crisis
  • Visit arrested US citizens in jail to monitor treatment
  • Repatriation of remains
important paperwork
Important Paperwork

All forms must be filled out and returned to your faculty director

or program coordinator.

Forms may vary depending on your program - study abroad,

exchange, affiliate, non-OU.

Paperwork required from all participants:

  • Copy of your passport
  • Copy of your flight itinerary
  • Confirmation of registration with US Embassy, and HTH Health Insurance enrollment

Participants on non-OU programs should also submit:

  • Foreign Study Checklist
  • Verification of Overseas Enrollment (VOE), submitted from abroad
your identity abroad
Your Identity Abroad

How you identify yourself may be different than how others identify you – especially while abroad.

  • Race / Ethnicity – Your racial majority/minority status may change in your host country.
  • Gender – Gender roles can be very different abroad.
  • Sexual Orientation – You may have a different level of comfort expressing your sexuality while abroad depending on the openness of the host country.
  • Religion – Religion plays a much different role in other cultures.
  • Nationality & Political views – Americans are sometimes viewed as one homogenous group.
most important factor that influenced treatment in host culture
Most Important Factor that Influenced Treatment in Host Culture

Adapted from Diversity Issues in Study Abroad – Brown University

did you know
  • In Spain it is normal to start dinner as late as 10 or 11pm.
  • In France it is rude to not wish someone
  • “Bon appétit” when they sit down to eat.
  • In Ecuador drawing a circle or two in the air with the index finger means “I’ll be back.”
  • In Austria punctuality is a big deal. A five minute train delay will be announced at the platforms with an apology.
the iceberg analogy
The Iceberg Analogy

On the Surface

Obvious cultural differences: emotional load is low

Just Under the Surface

Unspoken cultural rules: emotional load is high

Deep Culture

Unconscious cultural rules: emotional load most intense

managing expectations
Managing Expectations
  • Academic
    • Classroom culture, expectations, and grading may be different. Often, you are expected to be very independent.
  • Cultural
    • You’re not in Kansas anymore! Keep an open mind to differences and observe what is going on around you to learn.
  • Personal
    • Understand you may have feelings of homesickness or “culture shock” and that these feelings are normal.
  • Language
    • It may be difficult to communicate at first; be patient. Your skills will greatly improve with time.




what to pack
What to Pack?
  • Take only what you can carry!
  • Travel light – check with your airline to see what is allowed for carry-on and checked luggage and weight limits.

Where to Start?

  • Make a list…
  • Consider how long you’ll be gone. Consider the culture.
  • Consider the climate.


what to pack1
What to Pack?
  • Dress in layers.
  • Coordinate outfits around a central color so you can mix & match.
  • Take things you wouldn’t mind tossing at the end of your trip to make room for souvenirs etc.


  • To bring comfortable shoes.
  • To be prepared for more formal occasions.
  • Shorts, sweats and flip flops are not as common abroad and can make you stand out.
side notes on packing
Side Notes on Packing
  • Most products are available abroad.
  • Bring pre-filled prescriptions.
  • Pack all liquids/gels in Ziploc bags in case anything leaks or breaks
    • You can buy items like shampoo, toothpaste, or drinks when you get to your destination
  • Have extra copies of all important paperwork such as passport and flight itinerary.
  • Check out the rules for liquids, gels and aerosols in your carry-on at www.tsa.gov
more on packing
More on Packing
  • Be smart with laptops & iPods
    • They can make you stand out
    • They can attract thieves
  • For expensive items & things you absolutely cannot live without, pack them in your carry-on…
money tips
Paying by credit card may not beas common abroad as in the U.S.

MasterCard and Visa are most popular

American Express and Discover not accepted everywhere.

Check for the cirrus or star logos

Money Tips
  • ATMs: transaction fees in host country
  • Inform your bank before you go!
money tips1
Money Tips


  • Carry just enough.
  • Easiest way to pay.
  • Know exchange rates.
  • Convert your money: airports, banks, large hotels, travel agencies, railroad stations, and more.
  • Check airline prices right away!
  • Student rate travel sites to check:
    • STAtravel.com
    • Studentuniverse.com
  • Search engines offering cheaper flights:
    • Kayak.com
    • Cheaptickets.com
    • Edreams.com
  • Look for discount airlines:
  • Europe: Ryanair & Easyjet
  • South America: Mexicana & LAN Airlines

Research the different types of public transportation in your host country:




Find out where, how and when

you can buy tickets

If you take a Taxi, make sure it

is officially licensed!

  • Contact your family before you arrive
  • Bring a meaningful gift.
    • Something from your culture or country
    • OU branded souvenir
  • Be courteous and respectful of their rules (watch length of showers, light use).
  • Be adventurous - try new things!
  • Use the local language. If you’re unsure of something, ask your family.
  • If your homestay becomes uncomfortable, speak to the host university’s International Office or your faculty director.
keeping in touch
Keeping in Touch

Can you use your cell phone abroad?

Check with your provider

Search online for information on prepaid cell phones and calling cards

Consider purchasing a cell phone in host country


The old fashioned option but in some places it may be the only one

Internet cafes

Pay for internet access

keeping in touch1
Keeping In Touch

If you have computer access:

Skype - Create an account. Buy a webcam and headset. Make free

calls to other Skype users

Instant messaging - MSN, Yahoo Messenger, icq

Various other FREE online phone services: eg www.freecall.com

You can also use Skype and your computer to make cheap calls to landlines

electronics abroad
Electronics Abroad


Used for the actual sockets you will plug into

Several types - region specific

Google “electricity around the world” to find the type that’s right for your country

Usually sold in multi-country packs

Order online or buy in stores like Radio Shack, Target, Walmart, or travel specialty stores

Ecuador is the same as the U.S.

Universal Europe

  • France

Eastern Europe

Great Britain and Ireland

South Africa

electronics abroad1
Electronics Abroad

Converters (voltage)

Check the voltage of your country before you go

Buy the correct converter in US

Consider what you will use the converter for – iron, hair dryer, etc.

Consider buying hairdryer in host country

helpful hints
Helpful Hints
  • Dress appropriately for the attractions you want to see. (temples, cathedrals, etc.)
  • Be familiar with taboos, inappropriate behavior and gestures in your host country (do some online research)
  • Keep a journal to record little things you might forget, like the names of restaurants orfunny stories.
  • Carry extra change. Not
  • all countries offer free
  • public restrooms.
  • Stay flexible!!! Some of
  • the most memorable
  • events are unplanned.
travel experience share
Travel. Experience. Share.

Become an Office of Education Abroad FOREIGN CORRESPONDENT

Enter your pictures into the OEA photo contest

Pick up a flyer to find out how!

thanks for coming
Thanks for Coming!

If you have any questions, feel free to ask today, or anytime by contacting the Office of Education Abroad in

185 Lindley Hall.

Additional flyers on health and safety available here.

Have a wonderful trip, be safe, and make wonderful memories!