Studying abroad—here is a popular conversation topic, and one you’re probably involved in if you are in high school or planning on a postgraduate degree. For sure, a foreign degree offers many educational benefits: it gives you a unique academic perspective, develops your critical thinking skills, and opens doors to better career prospects.

While these are the primary reasons to consider an international education, we’d like to focus on the less talked about perks. Afterall, getting a degree can take between a year to 5 years, so it’s only fair to want to enjoy it as much as possible.

Here are our top 5 FUN reasons to study abroad:

Fully Experience Another Culture:

What better way to learn about another culture than by living in it? Immerse yourself in new traditions, enhance your wardrobe with new clothes, and the most delightful bit—try new food! Every region has unique and noteworthy foods: the sweet, savoury, and bizarre. If you’re a brave eater, you might just find a new favourite.

Call Another Country ‘Home’:

Living in another country is a one-of-a-kind experience. It’s fairly easy to take vacations, but how often do you get the opportunity to call another country home? Keep in mind that your younger years are some of the best for travel. You aren’t tied down to many commitments and you have a great deal of energy and adaptability.

Learn More About Yourself:

Self-discovery is essential for becoming more independent and mature; going far away from home forces you to learn about yourself and explore interesting new sides to your personality. Also, it takes a lot of guts to pack up and move to another country. Those guts will serve you well in the future. If you can leave home and settle down to many unknowns, you can easily tackle many future hurdle.

Perfect a Second (or Third!) Language:

Looking for a chance to perfect that language you’ve been learning? Studying abroad is your best opportunity to practice foreign language skills. Being multilingual is a reward in and of itself. In an increasingly globalized society, it also looks great to potential employers.

Have Friends from Everywhere:

It’s very likely that your chosen school will have international students from all ends of the world. Embrace this and make friends from different countries—they, like you, have left home, family, and friends for a new life abroad. These friends will often become your second family. Also, you never know, literally, where these friendships could take you (we mean, there could be many travel opportunities ahead).

Did we forget to mention that this is also an excellent way to check a few things off your bucket list? Visit famous landmarks, do a few road trips, and maybe join an acapella band while studying abroad! Most international graduates would agree that their years abroad are a few of their favourite memories. Give it a go then, for more reasons than securing a great education.

If you are a looking to study abroad, also check out our blogs, US vs. UK: A Comparative Study Guide, The Expat Education, and Moving Away From Home: Your College Packing Guide.

About the Author: Sarah Pater is a graduate student at University of Pittsburgh. Over the years, she has traveled to seven countries and eighteen of the fifty United States. During this time, Sarah has spent a summer semester teaching in China and has also been on an educational tour of Europe. Her passions are friendship, community, wellness, learning, writing, art, and food.