Where you'll live while you study abroad is one of the most important aspects of the experience of living in another country for your studies. While the actual educational benefit should always be at the forefront, how you live can completely make or break your experience. After all, you won't always be studying! In most cases you'll be guaranteed on-campus accommodation; but if in the unlikely event that you cannot rely on this, you'll need to organise off-campus accommodation.
Here are a few things to consider when choosing where you're going to live:
How much can you afford?
This is probably the first thing you should think about when choosing accommodation. There's no point moving in somewhere which you won't be able to afford after 3 months! Plan your budget for the year as well as you can, or put aside your rent money first and then think about extra costs like transport, food, school supplies etc.
How you'll get to campus
You'll need to travel to and from campus each day for class (and be on time) so consider walking distance or transport options (the more, the better). In a busy city like London, you can get across town quickly thanks to underground train systems whereas in a smaller town, you might have to rely heavily on public transport which can be irregular.
Who you'll live with
Your housemates could possibly be the next best friends you make for life, but you need to choose wisely. Think about the types of people you get on with already and the types of people you most definitely don't. Remember that you'll need to live and study in the same house as these people which means being able to get work done and not being distracted. However, studying abroad is all about new experiences so don't be too concerned if you move in with new types of people.
About the author:
Read about how to choose student accommodation in 10 of the most popular study destinations in the world at Hotcourses Abroad.