Passport and/or visa (if applicable): Your passport should not expire less than 90 days of your return date. Visa application procedures vary by country. You should check with the country’s consulate at least 3 months prior to your departure to become up to date and familiar with the visa process.
Accommodation: Your host university has notified you of your acceptance and arrival details, and you have planned your accommodation with the university OR you have been in contact with your faculty leader about arrival procedures and itinerary details OR you have arranged independent accommodation for the duration of your stay.
Purchase airline tickets
Registration: Confirm with the university or program abroad that you are registered and are in enrolled in courses.
Make sure to have copies of the following items (It is recommended to leave one set with your family, carry another separate copy from the original items, and then have one set electronically available):
Picture page of passport
Credit Cards (front and back)
Emergency Contact Information
If on a faculty-led program, a copy of your itinerary, with addresses and contact information of where you will be located
A copy of your acceptance letter from your host university (if applicable)
Banking and Currency:
Make sure to inform your bank/credit card company of your plans to be abroad prior to departure (or else your card could be temporarily put on hold while abroad due to the unfamiliar location).
Find out what fees your bank charges for transactions and plan to take several forms of funding with you (i.e. credit cards, debit cards, cash, etc).
Stay up to date with the knowledge of the currency exchange rates. i.e 1 EURO = 1.12 USD, 1 GBP = 1.32 USD, 1 Australian Dollar = 0.75 USD, 1 S. Korean Won = 0.00090 US Dollar, 1 Thai Baht = 0.029 USD.... etc.
Communication while abroad: Discuss with family when and how you will stay in touch while abroad. Consider setting up a Skype account. Discuss a plan for when you will call home after you arrive in your host country. It is possible that you may not have easy access to a phone within the first 24-48 hours.
Emergency Plan: Discuss with your family and loved ones what the plan will be to get information back home regarding your health and safety in the event of a natural disaster or other emergency. This is especially important at this time due to the amount of unfortunate attacks going on in the world.
Register with the embassy (not necessary but beneficial): Make the local American Embassy aware of your location in case of an emergency at travelregistration.state.gov/ibrs/ui .
Have a travel examination (not necessary but recommended): It is a good idea to speak with a doctor about international travel to be sure you are up to date with vaccinations and of a healthy condition to travel.
Stay current and informed of important deadlines and events happening in the US: Although you may be infatuated with traveling and being abroad, it does not mean that life at home stops. It is important to be current with all the important dates and deadlines so that by the time you get home you won't find yourself behind or in trouble.
Financial Aid Office (when aid is disbursed, filing FAFSA, scholarship deadlines etc.)
Continue to check your CSULB email account.
Applying for Graduation
Housing & Residence Life Office (reserve a spot in the residence halls for when you return to campus)
Course registration date for next semester.
If there is an election cycle that you wish you to participate in, you will need to make arrangements for an absentee ballot. For additional information, contact your local County Board of Elections or County Clerk. (**Especially this Fall 2016 semester!**)
Research the area you will be staying in: Become as familiar as possible with where you will be living; the closest hospital, drugstore, and ATM etc. It is also extremely important to research current events in your new location to be aware of what is going on in this region in the world. In today's times we are seeing an increasing amount of threats and attacks and it is important to be aware, knowledgeable, and vigilant.