The older I get, the more I understand the quote, “Collect moments, not things.â€ Though I’m uncertain who first made the statement, I can certainly understand how they reached this conclusion. ThingsÂ giveÂ you pleasureÂ temporarily, while memories bring you joy that lasts a lifetime. As a result, I have compiled a short list toÂ help you better relish moments abroad.
1. Plan a Spontaneous Trip Abroad
In a day and age where travel is relatively inexpensive, a last-minute trip abroad is a quite realistic and viable option. There are tonsÂ ofÂ apps and websites dedicated to discount travel. Thus,Â it is highly possible to catch aÂ last-minute deal to an amazingÂ destination for a fraction of the cost.
My recommendation is to be open, and have a few different places in mind. Depending upon when you travel, a certainÂ airline or hotel may be running a special to aÂ destination that you had not previously considered.Â Utilize an app, likeÂ Skyscanner, for aÂ greatÂ last-minute find. Also, remember to pack your camera for all those special moments.
2. Volunteer Abroad
There are scores of organizations across the globe that are committed to helping those in need. If youÂ want to give back, considerÂ lending your talents to a reputable nonprofit agency or group. There are variousÂ opportunities available to doÂ everything from helping to build homes, churches,Â and schools, to providing useful skills to residents of impoverished communities. Some trips are as short as a week, while others can extend over a year or more.
Decide what works best for you, and make sure to partner with an organization that has efforts which match your personal service goals. Check your local community first forÂ groups that may be heading overseas, or consider the Working Abroad website. Giving back will, most assuredly, bless you.
3. Learn a New LanguageÂ in Another Country
ImagineÂ meeting your instructor for a lesson at a French bistro while overlooking the Eiffel Tower, or practicing Spanish lessons amidst the llamas in Peru. There are private instructors as well as countless organizations globally, which offer coursesÂ to beginners, intermediates, and advanced level students.
Bring your workbook to life byÂ taking field trips to cafes, shopping districts, andÂ museums. Opt for solo instruction or become part ofÂ a classroom.Â Seek out private lessons in your desired country, or contact an organization, likeÂ EF,Â to learn another language abroad. Then, prepare for the adventure of a lifetime.
4. Teach or Work in a Different Country
One primary way to indulge in the expat life is to work overseas. Some U.S. citizens opt to teach English abroad, while others work on private or government contracts. This is the perfect wayÂ to experience other cultures from a local perspective. Visiting is much different thanÂ actually living in another country.
If you want to add the international experience to your personal orÂ professional resume, then you may want to assess the possibility of working abroad. There are several organizations that can help fulfill your expatriateÂ dreams like Teach Away,Â Jobs Abroad,Â or even the U.S. Department of State.
5. Attend a Festival or Participate in a Culinary Experience Abroad
There are a numberÂ ofÂ concerts, culinary experiences, and celebrations held around the world, annually; from Carnival to jazz festivals, the list is extensive. This is a fantastic way to connect with the local culture through song, dance, story, and food.
For a list of offerings, check tourism board websites by destination to find out what is taking place during the time of your visit. This is also anÂ ideal way to meet other global citizens, so get moving.
CheersÂ to new memories!