As an international student, transitioning into college or university can be stressful—and that’s without the change of climate, culture shock, or language barrier—so here are six savvy hacks to make your international studies easy-breezy!

1.Becoming a money-saving master:

Trying to scrounge up a few extra dollars for the next lunch of Raman noodles is the sad reality of most college student’s lives, but lucky for you, keeping track of your money couldn’t be easier.

Mint, an app available for free on iOS, Android or desktop, easily connects to your bank account to manage all aspects of your activity, including spending, savings, earnings and budgeting. (They also update a cheeky, informative blog called MintLife for all your financial/lifestyle questions).

This well-trusted app also determines your spending habits and can alert you whenever you’re nearing your budget limit, keeping your credit in line and extra cash in your hand.

2.Knowing your way around the city like a pro:

Navigating through a brand new area, especially a large place like California or New York, can be intimidating and downright irritating. But how do all of those other people get around so quickly? Easy; they know the ins and outs of the city, and soon you will too.
Google Maps is a great GPS tool for newbies, but knowing the city is about more than just recognising the street names—It’s about discovering the local shops and attractions, as well.

Like A Local, a free app, is exactly what the title claims to be. This handy app tells you what the locals’ favourites are around your area. Now you can let yourself explore while staying away from those tricky tourist attractions.

3.Getting the best value for your buck:

Even with the confusion of foreign currency, you’ll be the best sale-scavenger around if you utilise one of the most accessible, underrated tools out there: coupons. I’m not talking about your grandma’s $1.00 off Dish Soap discounts, either. How does up to 85% off your retail purchase sound? Sounds like my wallet is yelling, “hallelujah!”

Apps and websites like Yowza and Groupon offer sales that can save you big time, and here’s how it works—Just type in the store/item you’re looking for into the search bar, and the app will give you a selection of coupon codes to enter into the ‘discount’ section on your chosen store’s website.

There are also coupon apps that offer digital discounts that allow you to save your chosen coupon, then present it on your phone at the check out in-store. Just like Grandma, except more $$ saved and it’s much more convenient.

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4.Effortlessly keeping on track with your priorities:

Organising any priorities for the day should be a habit that any university student utilises—especially international students. Within the hectic mixture of moving, having new classes, meeting new friends, and all the other struggles that non-international students don’t have, a to-do list is a must.
The easiest way to keep track of your assignments, or whatever else you need to do, is to remind yourself. Sound’s simple, right? It is. With technology, to-do lists have been modernised into something that’s reliable and simple, and it’s never been easier to remember things.

My personal favourite for this specific task is Wunderlist; Wunderlist is an app (plus it’s available for download to your desktop!) that helps you organise your busy life in a minimalistic, trustworthy fashion.

5.Acing your classes with flying colours:

The reason you even became, or are thinking of becoming, an international student is because of the education opportunities, right? You should make sure that your class marks stay in tip-top shape by using Evernote.

If you had to pick only one of the apps listed , Evernote should be the one you choose. It’s the smooth-running, multitasking king of organisation, equipped with note taking, bookmarking, online chat with other students, to-do lists, and more!

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So whether discovering convenient, local shops is your forte, or if you’re more of a study-on-the-go type of person, hopefully you can find some great resources within these top six apps! Good luck on your journey to a new life, and don’t forget to let us know in the comments if you’ve ever tried one of these apps!


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