Before You Go

1. Attend the Pre-Departure Information Meeting/Orientation

For anyone studying abroad, the Pre-Departure Information Meeting is highly recommended.

What to expect:

  • Program Costs and Dates (Arrival, Departure, Independent Travel, etc.)
  • Academic Expectations
  • Health and Safety
  • Travel Tips

2.Exchange Information

Exchanging information as early as possible with others participants. Not only will you start your program with familiar faces, but this also helps with coordinating meet up locations, in case of an emergency or for any questions you might want to ask before you depart.

By communicating early, you also have the opportunity to plan ahead to bring and/or share supplies*

*See section on what to bring

Helpful Tips:

  • Group Messaging Apps/Facebook Page
  • Plan ahead
  • Carpool
  • Set reminders

3. What to Bring?

Before you go, it is important to evaluate what you’ll be bringing. Most people tend to over pack, so here is a list of essentials:

  • Passport copies and address booklet with names/numbers/phrases/map.

Never carry your real passport once you arrive, keep it in a safe location and always carry a copy.

  • Clothes: Pack light but bring clothes for different kinds of weather. Layering clothing is also convenient.

Note: The month of July in Paris features end of the season sales, if you plan on shopping pack light to avoid extra airline fees. There are laundry rooms provided.

  • Fan: Summers in Paris have been increasingly hot.

Generally the summers are much cooler than southern California (avg. temp. of July is 68 F/20 C) and as a result many older buildings are not equipped with air conditioning. Plan accordingly; this can be bought after you arrive or before you go, the same applies for toiletries.

  • Toiletries (Optional): Unless there is a specific product you use, you can always purchase your toiletries after arriving.
  • Travel Adapter/Converter

4. Accommodations

The accommodations provided will be on-campus dormitory.

There are two options for the program:

Option 1) Double

Option 2) Single w/ Private Restroom

Each room comes with its own wash room (includes sink/mirror/cabinets) and most come with mini-refrigerators.

Every floor to every other floor has a restroom (W.C.-toilet only) with a shower located nearby.

It is important to note that there are laundry rooms present, in addition to a community kitchen (equipped with stove, microwave, sink, etc.)

5. Getting Around

Public Transit

  • For the duration of the program, you will be given a pass (included in costs) that grants access on the metro and buses.
  • Many programs provide an orientation shortly after arrival explaining the transit system and general advice for your stay. Don’t be hesitant to ask any of these questions at a pre-orientation meeting or to anyone who has traveled abroad.
  • The group flight includes a transfer to your accommodations
  • Detailed maps can be found online
  • Research possible locations you plan to visit, including cost, travel fare and time.

6. Health and Safety

For any health and safety issues, please contact the ACCENT Center.

Appointments can be made for you with a nearby doctor, who can then give you prescription.

You have the option of filling out a form so your insurance can reimburse you for costs paid.

There is also the option of local pharmacies, which are located every other block. Pharmacies will provide you with over the counter medicine to hygiene/toiletries.

7. Helpful Hints

  • Notify your bank before you depart. Find out if your bank has any partnering banks in the country/countries you plan on visit. Find out if any fees apply to your withdrawals.
  • Bring comfortable shoes and make sure you are in good health. The amount of walking you will do during your stay is shocking, make sure you have proper footwear and have broken in your shoes.
  • Never keep any of your valuables such as your phone or wallet in your pockets where they can be easily accessed.
  • Always notify others where you are going and never travel alone.
  • Tipping is considered rude. A percentage is already calculated and included in your bill.
  • Make sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months after your planned return date.

Want to Blog for Cal Poly Pomona Study Abroad?

CPP Study Abroad is looking for great storytellers to blog about their time abroad, whether it’s a quarter, semester, summer or academic year with CPP or a non-CPP program. If sharing your study abroad experience through writing, video, photos and/or other media while receiving professional feedback appeals to you, consider applying for the CPP Featured Blogger program! We’re particularly interested in hearing from students who currently blog or are interested in building their writing portfolio prior to graduation. Stories from Featured Bloggers will be published on the CPP Study Abroad Blog and through other social media channels throughout the year.

What are the minimum requirements?
• Be accepted to a Study Abroad program
• Respond to writing prompts form CPP Study Abroad Department
• Submit at least two blog posts containing original content per month throughout the duration of your program

What is required while you’re abroad?
• Respond to periodic writing prompts from the CPP Study Abroad Department
• Submit at least two posts per month by deadlines
• Submit posts through the CPP Study Abroad Blog platform

What are the benefits of the program?
• Expand your writing portfolio
• Grain writing experience and exposure
• Build your resume
• Be a Study Abroad Ambassador!

How do I apply?
• Email for application
• Application deadlines are as follows:
o Fall and Academic Year programs – July 1
o Spring programs – Jan 1
o Summer programs – May 1

Contact the CPP Study Abroad Department at

Melbourne Exchange Tips

“Book a return flight trip before you leave to the country. You can always change your flight back to the home country at a small fee if needed. It is usually cheaper than booking two one-way trips if you don’t know exactly when you are coming back.” -Junior, Mechanical Engineering

“If you decide to live in the suburbs, make sure to get a concession card for public transport (only available to exchange not international students) — it’ll save half the price. Also, you are able to the change trams, trains, buses for 0 charge within 2 hours of the first time $$ was deducted . Taking the tram in the city is free — if you tap, YOU WILL be charged. Officers do check frequently so make sure you tap when you’re supposed to and always bring your concession card. I heard that Melbourne Central charges you around $9 for the concession card, but if you get it somewhere else they only charge around $3.” -Junior, International Business

“Plan classes well ahead of time, and research the city.” -Sophomore, Business

“I would only recommend people at RMIT to find their own apartment or house like I found most exchange students did (off gumtree site), don’t stay at the RMIT Village.” -Senior, Psychology

“Since Melbourne is known for their coffee and cafes, brunch can range from $14- $20 AUD. Overall, I guess it balances out since you don’t have to pay tips” -Junior, International Business



Tips to Traveling Abroad

If you have already decided you’re going abroad, don’t worry! The infamous Buzzfeed has some great tips for you to encourage you in your upcoming journey and also equip you with some great advice!

And if you haven’t decided you’re going abroad, do! It’s an amazing experience that you won’t regret – no matter where you go.

Check out the useful tips Here. 

Remember, don’t hesitate to come into the International Center for more information, advice or to ask about a specific program!

– You can have the world in your hands – if you’re brave enough to take hold of it –

Cheers xx