In order to budget effectively when studying abroad, you want to start by looking at how much cash you will be bringing with you abroad. I would recommend keeping this money on a debit/credit card instead of bringing cash because cash could be misplaced or stolen.
If a credit card is lost or stolen, you can easily call the card service phone number to deactivate the card. You may also want to look into using a card that does not charge a fee for foreign transactions and has a chip attached to the card as some places abroad will only accept credit cards that have chips.
Start with a Budget
Try to make a budget for the cash you want to spend abroad. Take into account daily meals, souvenirs, and other expenses. As per budgeting meals, I suggest allotting most expenses towards dinners. If the hotel you are staying at serves free breakfast in the morning, make sure to wake up early enough to make it to breakfast. After all, it is the most important meal of the day! Then, for lunch try to aim for something simple such as a sandwich or salad. Doing so will leave most of your money to spend on a fancy dinner out with your peers and maybe even dessert, too.
Some people found themselves having to buy more luggage or pay extra fees because of how much stuff they were bringing back from their trip. Make sure when you are packing for your seminar to leave a lot of extra room for souvenirs. When I had more souvenirs to bring home that wouldn’t fit in my bags, I actually shipped some of my items back to my house through the postal service. This saved me some cash, but make sure nothing fragile is being shipped back because there is a risk of it being broken or damaged.
You may also want to include miscellaneous activities in the budget you create for your IBS Seminar. These could include going out for drinks and special events such as any shows you want to see.
Be Prepared Just in Case
Although making a budget and sticking to it during your seminar would be really efficient for spending cash wisely, I still suggest bringing more than one credit card in case of accidental misplacement of the card or in case you spend more than intended. To make your budget, you can either make a note of your daily spending allowances or go more in detail of all expenditures you are expecting.
The second option may be more appealing if you are an accounting major like myself. Either way, budgeting your cash will be important for your seminar and is good practice for the future.
Photo Credit: Charlie Bradbury