Tips For Teens Going Abroad

Is your teen headed abroad for the first time? A Broader View - offers five tips for making the experience easier and safer.
Dec. 3, 2008 - PRLog -- 1. Establish a contact schedule. It can be difficult to reach your child overseas on the spur of the moment, so establish a contact time when he or she will call or e-mail you. Keep in mind time differences and your child's schedule when creating a plan. Your child will likely have access to an Internet cafe or an Internet connection at a hostel or hotel, so e-mail may be the easier option.

2. Use a credit card. If your child doesn't have a credit card, get her one specifically for the trip to take advantage of the better exchange rates credit cards offer. Visa and MasterCard charge a 1 percent to 3 percent fee for using their cards to pay in a foreign currency, but the fees are offset by the improved exchange rate the companies negotiate. In an emergency, it is easier to use a credit card than trying to complete a wire transfer to your child.

3. Make copies. Before your child leaves, make copies of all of the important documents and cards he is taking with him. This includes any form of ID, including passport, credit cards, rail passes and any other documents that will be difficult to replace if lost.

Copies likely won't be accepted as equivalent to the real thing, but having copies does make it easier to replace the originals.

4. Get contact information. If your child is traveling overseas as part of a study-abroad program, get the contact information of the head of the program where she is traveling and the head of the program at her university back home. These will be the first people to contact in an emergency because they will have an itinerary of where the participants should be. You also should make sure they have your contact information.

5. Buy a student or youth discount card. Student and youth discount cards like ISIC and IYTC offer significant savings all over the world to some of the best museums, historical sites and entertainment venues.

The card also allows you to book discounted student-rate air fare and is accepted by many hostels and hotels for discounts and perks like complimentary Internet access.

The card also comes with basic insurance and is an internationally recognized ID card. It is available at for $22.

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