University of Auckland students have the opportunity to study at one partner university in Iceland: University of Iceland. This is a new partner university, we will update you with students experiences when they come back from exchange!

Let’s hear what our students have to say…

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I landed in Iceland without knowing a single person, without knowing what to expect, yet as my departure date steps closer one calendar block at a time, my heart aches as I say goodbye to this beautiful place I now call home. Living in Reykjavik has been like discovering a soul mate in the form of brightly coloured houses that resemble toys, and a creative energy that seems to have painted everyone in the vicinity. It is a quaint city with so much personality. Tiny cafes, comfortingly cozy with mismatched armchairs, candles in wine bottles and aged books on peeling shelves. The record stores that invite you to sit and listen to music in peace as the owner offers espresso in white china, and always, always looming in the near distance, the giant mountain range Esja with its snow-capped peaks. This city is individual, with fearless, beautiful people donned in impeccably artistic outfits as they sip their coffee. There are no fast food stores, no American pop music blasting from shop doors, no clichéd ideas of what a modern city should resemble. It’s unlike any other place… I mean, the people believe in elves! What a surreal dreamscape.

I have been here for nine months. When I first landed I felt lonely and despondent just thinking about how far away from home I was, but within a few days I had made friends and began to feel less afraid of exploring. Erasmus is an international student network organization that operates around Europe, and the group here in Iceland organized excursions such as hikes and activities such as pub crawls, along with parties in a local bar every single weekend. For the first three months I lived in the student dorm which was newly built and better than any student dorm I could have imagined.

I would often go on road trips. Driving outside of the small city is breath taking… There are so many spots that are perfectly sublime. Icelandic people have a strong connection to nature and work hard to protect it, with 85% of the country’s energy coming from renewable sources.


Iceland is a great country for outdoor activities and carries a reputation of being environmentally friendly, in a way it is like the New Zealand on the other side of the world. The people there speak Icelandic, a unique language that is still very similar to the language of their old viking ancestors. It is common in Iceland to eat lamb, seafood, skyr (similar to yogurt) and liquorice. If you want to be more adventurous you could try the fermented shark (Hákarl) paired with the black death liquor (Brennivín). The living cost in Iceland is higher in comparison, but if you stick to buying groceries at the Bonus supermarket it is not as bad. Agriculture is more difficult to grow in their soil, so they either import or grow them using geothermal heating in greenhouses. All of the electricity in Iceland is derived from renewable sources and you will never run out of hot water.

The classes in the University of Iceland were taught in a familiar way that is not so much different from Auckland and it was not difficult to make friends as other students were also eager to meet new people. During some of the group assignments Icelandic students can seem unengaged, this could be because English is their second language and that many of them had families to take care of which I found surprising. I travelled almost every week in Iceland to a different part of the country, because there are just so many things to see. The most popular destinations are along the ‘golden circle’ and the south coast, but you shouldn’t miss going to Snæfellsnes in the west, Akureyri in the north and the Westfjords in the northwest. It is easy to go on a trip, find enough friends to fill up a rental car, book your hostels then off you go. Camping and tramping are also very common in Iceland with many routes to choose from in the highlands, but be careful to not risk it during winter. The weather in Iceland can also change abruptly so be sure to bring appropriate clothing. During the spring and summer months puffins migrate to the country which is something that cannot be missed. The days get super long in the summer where the sun never sets and super short during winter where you only get 4 hours daylight. Iceland is a country where the nature takes charge with unpredictable weather and drastic changes in seasons, it has amazing landscapes and the largest glacier in Europe (in area) that can easily be seen. If that does not impress you, then go for the aurora borealis.

5 Things You Will Master On Exchange

New Year, New You. Or should we say, new experience, new you! You will return with many good stories (to annoy your family and friends with), a whole load of confidence (I can do anything!) and become a master of these 5 skills!

    1. Navigation


Although the GPS is a very handy tool to help you find your way around, it’s also good to know your directions and how to read maps. You’ll become an expert on knowing which bus route to take (and which not to take), which train will get you to where you want to go (and not take you in the opposite direction) and how to look out for landmarks! Yes, it can get stressful if you lose your way, but it’s all part of the experience in terms of navigating your way through a new environment and thinking on your feet (quite literally)!

      2. Communication


You’ll become a pro at picking up the words and phrases that you need to get by. Especially if you’re going to a country where you don’t understand the native language(s), you’ll surprise yourself at what you can learn and interpret! Who knows, you’ll start to talk more with your hands and become so skilled at the art of gesturing!

     3. Time management


There is no time like the present! Your time management skills will definitely be put to the test as you balance your studies, co-curriculars and travel. You’ll get better at knowing when to show up for things, how to plan your time and ensure that you complete your assignment on time so that you can enjoy that hike or weekend getaway.

     4. Independence


Adulting! Yes, independence is a large part of adulthood. You will be awesome at fending for yourself because you will be responsible for everything (yes, is sounds daunting, but trust us, you will impress people when you get back with your independence).

    5. The art of conversation


If you were shy before, you won’t be after this! Chances are you will be studying in a place where you don’t know anyone. This presents the perfect opportunity to make friends and network with people that you meet! Although it can seem scary at first, take a leap of faith, be brave and chat to people! Start off with basic conversation starters (e.g. Where have you come from? What do you study?) and work your way from there. Pretty soon, you’ll be a natural (and make a lot of friends)!

Tell me more!!!

Come see us at 360 International during our office hours. You can get advice on available exchange programmes, how and when to apply, and more. Also, if we haven’t convinced you, come anyway. Because we will!

  • We’re located in the Kate Edger Student Commons on the 4th floor next to iSpace.
  • Office hours are from Monday to Friday, 2pm-4pm.

Also, check out our website for more information:

And, in an act of shameless self-promotion, follow us on social media:


University of Auckland students have the opportunity to study at three partner universities in Spain:  Universidad de Granada, University of Oviedo and the University of Salamanca. 

Let’s hear what our students have to say…

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Granada, Spain was an amazing place to live and spend my semester abroad. It is a small city with hundreds of years of history and such a diverse culture. Because Granada was the last region in Spain to be conquered by the Catholic monarchs, it still retains much of its Muslim heritage, which I found to be an exciting mixture of cultures.

– Sonya, University of Granada


The lifestyle in Spain was a highlight for me, with food prices being very reasonable, and the timetables being very laidback and relaxed, it made it possible to go out for tapas or drinks on a regular basis and in Salamanca it was possible to go out any day of the week, as the student atmosphere was so great.

– Hannah, University of Salamanca

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The main highlight of Granada was, without a doubt, the tapas -you pay 1.5 to 2 euros for a drink and an always amazing tapa dish (Bar Poe is my favorite place in the world). Tapas is a traditional Spanish custom, but also a crucial part of Granada’s huge youth culture -one third of the city are University students, which gives you an idea of how vibrant it is.

– Angus, University of Granada


The highlights of my exchange was just being surrounded by Spanish all the time, meeting a mix of people that I would have never met, and exploring a new culture with other exchange students. I loved Spanish food, the tapas that Granada is famous for, and the weekly trips that were organised by student groups of the university. I loved all the nature I was surrounded by, and all the culture. There was always something to do there.

– Nanako, University of Granada


The city itself is very attractive, centered on the magnificent Plaza Mayor, which is buzzing with people almost without pause. As the city is so well known as a place to learn Spanish, there are many, many exchange students from all corners of the globe. This can make finding the Spaniards tricky, as they tend to keep themselves to themselves… but it can be done, particularly through language exchanges – meeting someone who, for example, speaks Spanish and wants to learn English, and having a conversation, practicing both.

– Harry, University of Salamanca


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Luckily in Salamanca there were a lot of exchange students, and through tours of the city and meetups I made great friends from all over the world that I was able to hang out with and travel with during the year. Since they were all from different countries, including Spain and South America, I ended up speaking Spanish almost the whole time during my exchange which definitely helped me improve and allowed me to enjoy using the amazing language.

– Hannah, University of Salamanca


One of the great things was ERASMUS, an international student organisation that allowed you to meet other internationals and they organised a lot of trips around Spain. Travelling around Spain was relatively easy with cheap busses, I managed to explore a lot of Andalusia, Barcelona, Ibiza, and even got to travel to Morocco, which only takes a 1hr long ferry ride from the bottom of Spain.

– Kathryn, University of Granada

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Sonya Stephen_Granada 1143 (1)


University of Auckland students have the opportunity to study at seven partner universities in Australia: Australian National University, Monash University, University of Melbourne, University of New South Wales, University of Queensland, University of Sydney, and University of Wollongong. 

Let’s hear what our students have to say…












My time at the University of Melbourne was a lesson in budgeting and restraint, and a daunting undertaking for a small town kid. The excitement and opportunity of the bright lights and big city soon dealt to this, and the exchange was an overwhelmingly positive experience which I would recommend to anyone.

– Andrew, University of Melbourne


Although there is not as great a cultural difference between Australia and New Zealand as with other countries I still found it very exciting to explore the many rooftops and alley ways in a vibrant new city. I loved being able to hop on the tram to get to one of the many delicious cafes as well as seeing the ever changing street art all over the city.

– Emily, Monash University


Australia like New Zealand, is a country also famous for its multiculturalism, with diverse cultures and ethnicities living together. By living there for five month with other international exchange students, I have not only learnt more about culture diversity but also knowing how to respect and celebrate it. This has allowed me to experience the opportunity of meeting new people with different cultural backgrounds in every class but also feeling accepted by others.

– Scarlett, University of Sydney


Melbourne is a diverse city with a rich culture. The city is has a strong emphasis on the arts, such as performing arts, literature, visual arts, and culinary arts. In the city you will find many street performers and street art. Hosier Lane is popular for its street art and it is a great tourist attraction.

Joshua, University of Melbourne


Fortunately, there were many chances to escape from study and take a few trips around Melbourne itself and Australia: sunbathing on the golden beaches of Cairns, diving at the Great Barrier Reef, hiring a car to drive along the Great Ocean Road and Sydney sightseeing. These travels were definitely the highlight of my time abroad. My advice to any students thinking about going on an exchange would be yes, do it, do it now. The opportunity to get a new sense of university life in a different city, explore another country and meet lifelong friends from around the world (who have couches around the world) should not be passed up.

– Rufus, Monash University

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University of Auckland students have the opportunity to study at eight partner universities in China: Chinese University of Hong Kong, City University of Hong Kong, Fudan University, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Peking University, Tsinghua University, University of  Hong Kong, and University of Nottingham at Ningbo. 

Let’s hear what our students have to say…


At first it was really daunting to think about going on exchange – the whole thing gave me jitters since I was really afraid of stepping outside my comfort zone and being alone, but I gave it a shot and I don’t regret it.

– So Yu, University of Hong Kong

The advice I would give students thinking about exchange programme is to challenge yourself and choose a destination that is not so common and will push you to work harder and smarter and will also challenge yourself in terms of your personality. Being out of your comfort zone will force you to grow so I think choosing a destination where you can learn and somewhere that is not a common holiday experience is a great opportunity to be exposed to a new culture and understanding how other people live.

– Jessica, Tsinghua University


I wanted to challenge myself by being out of my little comfort zone. Also I wanted to dramatically improve my spoken Chinese language skill as well as written skill by interacting with the native speakers in the excellent Chinese university. Tsinghua University was such an excellent choice of host university, because it is originally well-known for its high quality of education service.

– Sam, Tsinghua University

Peking University has a beautiful campus, which turned vibrant shades of red and yellow as fall set in. The large Weiming Lake froze over and students were able to go ice-skating and play winter sports on it. The campus is located nearby other leading universities in the north-west corner of Beijing. Student life thrives in this part of town. China also has excellent railway networks and cheap domestic flights, making faraway provinces easily accessible for weekend trips.

– Lucy, Peking University

There’s always something to do outside of the university and is super easy and cheap to get around quickly using the city’s comprehensive underground metro. For shopaholics, there are an absurd amount of malls if you’re into tax free shopping and also markets where you can haggle your way to a good bargain. For a day time adventure away from the concrete jungle, Hong Kong offers plenty of breathtaking nature hikes as well as the standard tourist attractions. At night, popular activities include a visit to the horse races, followed by a night out in Lan Kwai Fong to experience of the world’s best night life.

– James, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology


Hong Kong. This city is so vibrant and alive; a city that never sleeps. Neon lights, billboards and signs light up the streets. The night life at LKF, eating the quintessential dim sum at 3am in K-town. Learning the slang from locals. The fast moving pace of the city and its people. It never seems to stop.

– Fiona, University of Hong Kong

While researching about Hong Kong, people described Hong Kong as a melting pot of different nationalities and cultures but I found that people in Hong Kong well preserved its own, unique culture, while getting along with people with different nationalities.

– Michelle, Chinese University of Hong Kong


When I first arrived in Shanghai, I was amazed by the range of things this large city had on offer, there was a wide selection of food, including all kinds of cuisines, my favourite was the xiaolongbao which is a kind of shanghai traditional bun.

– Muyang, Fudan University

I lived like a Beijinger in my second semester. I rode a bike to and from uni, dodging between cars and the hundreds of scooters on the road at any one time. I spoke only in Chinese almost all the time and found myself having complicated and interesting conversations with both teachers, friends and people I met in my day to day life. My memories of my second semester are dominated by recollections of the time eating with my classmates or preparing together for our exams.

– Tom, Tsinghua University

Studying Abroad at HKUST has been the most unforgettable experience highlighted by the amazing people I’ve met along the way. The piece of advice I could give to anyone thinking of studying abroad is just take a leap and go for it!

– James, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology



University of Auckland students have the opportunity to study at 13 partner universities in England: 

  1. King’s College London
  2. Kingston University
  3. Newcastle University
  4. Queen Mary University of London
  5. University College London
  6. University of Birmingham
  7. University of Exeter
  8. University of Leeds
  9. University of Manchester
  10. University of Nottingham
  11. University of Roehampton
  12. University of Sheffield
  13. University of Southampton

Let’s hear what our students have to say…


Most people think of going to London when they think UK but Sheffield is an underrated northern city with plenty of history, greenery and home to the Arctic Monkeys. It was voted the most generous and the safest city in the UK in 2015 and really lives up to this reputation. It’s an industrial city, with more trees than people and a village feel. Sheffield is a student city, where statistically the most graduates decide to stay on.

– Natalie, University of Sheffield

One of the exciting things about going on exchange is being thrown out of your comfort zone and being put into a new environment and calling it home for a while, I remember my very first impression of London being how big it is. I can safely say that it’s the biggest city I’ve ever seen in my life. Kingston was a very suburban town about 40 mins outside of London city, this made it feel quite easy to settle down. I remember walking around in Kingston thinking of how lively and cute it is, as somewhat of a student town I felt like I was going to have a great time living here there seemed to be so much to see and do.

– Roberto, Kingston University London


When I first arrived in London I must admit I was pretty overwhelmed. London is a huge city and walking down Oxford Street was nothing like Queen Street in Auckland. I had never seen so many people, buses or stores. However, within a couple of days I quickly realised that I loved London and there was just so much to see.

– Allanah, King’s College London

King’s offers a rich selection of clubs and activities. Their student union is amazing, and there’s always something to head along to – a student play, or a debate for Black History Month, or the student bar to commiserate about election night. I joined the Literary Journal editorial team, and helped to produce a beautiful edition which we launched with the help of wine and crisps in the middle of the city.

– Sophie, King’s College London


 I truly made lifelong friends at King’s who became my new family and were a source of invaluable support during my time away.

– Allanah, King’s College London

I visited the Peak district often, it is a 5 pound return on the bus. There are beautiful cycling trails, hikes and quaint villages to explore and its right on your doorstep. Flights to Europe are also insanely cheap. I went to Portugal, Macedonia, Hungary, Ireland, Bulgaria and Germany. All of these flights ranged from 10-30 pounds. This makes it affordable if just for a weekend.

– Natalie, University of Sheffield


I felt this exchange programme gives you broader views of seeing the world because during the exchange period and while you travel, it allows you time to think about a lot of things: about your future, about yourself etc. which, I believe, actually helped me become more mature and gain more confidence through this time.

– Jiwon, University of Leeds

I learned that I can accomplish a lot more than I thought I could and part of this was due to what I would recommend to future exchange students: make the most of your experience by getting involved in University life, seek new friendships and soak up as much information and culture as you can. Furthermore, even though it may be tempting to spend the semester partying and travelling, university life on the other side of the world is definitely an experience not to miss as well.

– Briana, University of Manchester


USA: East and South

University of Auckland students have the opportunity to study overseas at over 125 partner universities in over 25 countries. One of the most popular destinations to study abroad is the United States. Our American partner universities are all diverse and renowned institutions, providing students with equally as diverse cultural experiences and academic opportunities. In this post (the second of three), we hear from past exchange students who have studied in the Eastern and Southern regions of the United States as part of the Auckland Abroad program. Our partner universities in the East and South are The University of Maryland, The University of Virginia, College of William and Mary, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, The University of Georgia and American University

Update: As of Semester 2, 2017 we are now partnered with The George Washington University in Washington DC!

“While America isn’t the cultural opposite of New Zealand like some other exchange programs, culture shock still hit me. From the super-sized food, to realizing Greek life isn’t just in movies and perhaps even that America might just be the greatest country in the world, at least for the college experience anyway.” – Josh Barkle, Rutgers University

The University of Maryland

“The moment I stepped onto the College Park Campus, I was met with a Campus that looked like it belonged in a magazine. I had my own room in a hall only a thirty second walk to the diner, which supplied all my meals. It was a huge hall with eight different ‘mini restaurants’ to choose from, including pizza and pasta stations, sandwich and salad stations and a make-your-own-waffle station. With three days jam-packed full of orientation events, the exchange students quickly formed friendships which grew closer and closer till it felt as though we had been friends forever. In my first week, I attended a ‘Pep Rally’ (as seen in many American films), an American Football game, and bore witness to a ‘flash mob.’ Over the next few months, I would attend stimulating lectures, join the circus that is students supporting their university sports teams and go on weekend excursions to the Niagara Falls, Toronto, New York (complete with watching a show on Broadway), Baltimore and Virginia. When I had an afternoon or morning free, I could take the metro for 20 minutes and find myself in the capital – Washington DC. Wandering around the Smithsonian Museums, spotting Obama at the White House and visiting famous monuments.” – Klara Klippel, The University of Maryland

The University of Virginia

“The buildings of the University are stunning and one of a kind – it’s a World Heritage Site for a reason. Despite many of the buildings being in red brick, I found the grounds to be overwhelmingly green and full of foliage, and moving into the Fall, Charlottesville only gets prettier. While the University’s bus system does a really great job of getting you around Grounds to wherever you need to be, when you live in a place as beautiful and scenic as this, why take the bus?” – Christine Winspear, The University of Virginia

“I remember arriving in Charlottesville, Virginia and straight away, the University presence was extremely obvious in the town. I was surprised to see UVA banners at the airport, hanging in windows around town and logos even printed on the road! The University itself was beautiful; both the buildings and the grounds, and my first impressions were that UVA was something that you’d see in the movies. Everyone was so lovely and friendly in Charlottesville, and the fact that I was a New Zealander was a huge hit! From the moment I arrived until the moment I left, I absolutely loved America!” – Sarah Menzies, The University of Virginia

College of William and Mary

“William and Mary is situated in the picturesque town of Williamsburg, which is one of the original English colonies that was settled on the Virginia peninsula. Because of this history, Williamsburg is always bustling with re-enactors, festivals and markets. As the second-oldest university in the United States, William and Mary is treated as a vital part of this historic community. William and Mary has a beautiful sprawling campus, scattered with colonial houses that have been converted to classrooms. The campus is always buzzing with activity and there are plenty of clubs to involve yourself with. Everyone is extremely welcoming and there is a strong school spirit that unites the student body.” – Elle Crump, College of William and Mary

“I was lucky enough to spend 5 months living abroad in Williamsburg, Virginia, while studying at the College of William & Mary Law School. Living in Williamsburg was surreal. Aside from looking like something out of a storybook, Williamsburg was a living museum, with a large part of the town dedicated to colonial re-enactment. Stepping into colonial Williamsburg really does feel like stepping back in time. William & Mary is historic in more ways than one. The Marshall-Wythe School of Law was founded by local Virginian Thomas Jefferson in 1779, and is the oldest law school still operating in the United States. As an American history buff, it was amazing to be studying somewhere that was so at the heart of American law and politics for so many years!” – Hannah Thomson, College of William and Mary

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
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“UNC is a typical American college campus, with a beautiful tree lined quad, sports stadiums and an overwhelming amount of school spirit and pride. UNC is the perfect mix of academic study and extracurricular activity. I can promise that you will never be bored in Chapel Hill! The faculty is exceptional and the learning opportunities are once in a lifetime. UNC’s exchange organization, EASE is a great resource for incoming students, providing mentorship, networking and events throughout the year. My advice to any exchange student would be to make the most of every moment abroad. Partake in research projects, connect with faculty, volunteer and get involved – these opportunities not only enrich your experience abroad, but look great on a resume to future employers! My year at UNC was the best year of my life – you will be challenged, rewarded, welcomed and excited by all that being a member of the UNC family means. UNC Chapel Hill will become a part of you – once a Tar Heel, always a Tar Heel.” – Courtenay James, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

“Firstly, Chapel Hill in 400 words is a challenge. I could spend days talking to someone about what it means to be a Tar Heel. No word of a lie, if you choose Chapel Hill, you are on the door step of the best semester of your life. Chapel Hill is a small college town in North Carolina. UNC is the clear academic front runner on our list of options – if you’re after a truly southern college experience. The campus is stunning, everywhere you look there is beautiful scenery and a bunch of squirrels. The weather in this town is near perfect and the social scene is a lot of fun. Whether you are into country music, quirky bars or fraternity parties, there is something for everyone at UNC Chapel Hill.” – Joanna Appelman, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

The University of Georgia and American University are two of our newest exchange partners.

8622872d36d0c3a0f4fa1146b909bb6cFounded in 1785, the University of Georgia is the nation’s oldest state-chartered university. History and tradition have special emphasis in the life of the University. With its strong academic majors, outstanding athletic programs, and extensive and varied campus life, the University attracts more students from every state in the nation and many foreign countries. The University of Georgia is located in Athens, a college town in Northeast Georgia within an hour of Atlanta.

American University
is located in Washington DC, 20 minutes from the center of the city.  Students are active citizens both on and off campus. Studying in Washington DC places students at the heart of US history and politics. With highly ranked schools and colleges and internationally recognized faculty, AU offers a balance between class time and career-advancing experience in Washington, D.C., and beyond. Its students, among the country’s most politically active, distinguish themselves for their service, leadership, and ability to rethink global and domestic challenges and opportunities.

10 Must Buy Items Before Studying Abroad

Hurrah! You’re embarking on the adventure of a lifetime, travelling the oceans to a new land to study, explore and immerse yourself in a new culture and way of life. A dream come true!

But let’s be realistic: Preparing to go on an exchange is no easy feat. It takes time and effort, not to mention the toll on your emotions when you realize you are leaving home for the unknown. But never fear – with these ten items in your suitcase, you’ll be leaving on a jet plane with no worries at all!

1. A portable charger


The greatest thing since sliced bread, the portable charger is truly a life saver while studying abroad. As optimistic as we are about the battery life of our phone, the time will come when you’re about to take the perfect Snapchat of something cool to show your pals back home and BAM, the black screen appears and your phone is dead. Solve this problem by plugging your phone into one of these babies, often they can hold one or two full charges, making travelling/snapchatting/skyping your Mum etc an easy feat.

2. Raincoat


Regardless of your destination, a rainy day is inevitable. Raincoats are something easily forgotten, until you need to walk across campus to your class in the pouring rain. Don’t show up looking like a drowned rat – get a raincoat.

3. New Zealand Snacks

Even if there isn’t much space in your suitcase, try and squeeze in some of your favorite Kiwi snacks (no cheese or kumara chips though – you don’t want to make immigration mad on your first day out of the country). Stick to packaged treats like Jaffas, Whittakers Creamy Milk, Tim Tams – whatever you think you might crave during an all-nighter or an exam cramming session. Trust me on this one – I had to get an emergency pack of Pineapple Lumps mailed to me in the States during midterm season.

4. A carry-on bag

One of the greatest aspects of an exchange is the travel. Wherever you are in the world, expand your horizons and use whatever free time you have to explore your surroundings. To avoid horrendous baggage charges (and save money for more travel!) purchase a sturdy, reliable, easy to move about airline approved carry-on bag. You’re about to move halfway around the world – so it’s a good idea to learn how to pack light.

5. Journal

Regardless of how many Instagrams or Snapchats you take while abroad, there’s nothing like getting home and looking back through a handwritten journal detailing all your overseas adventures. If you’re more of a techie, how about starting an online blog? Or even better yet, join the Auckland Abroad team as one of our student bloggers. Find our current bloggers here.

6. Universal plug adapter

Pretty self-explanatory. Make sure to invest in a good quality one to avoid any electric shocks and/or hairdryers blowing up (yes this happened to me so take heed!)

7. Insurance

Boring as it may seem, this may save your life (literally). You will most likely be required to purchase mandatory health insurance but be prepared and invest in some quality travel insurance for your adventures.

8. Souvenirs from home

Whether this be a poster, New Zealand flag, a stuffed kiwi, postcards or an All Blacks jersey, it’s a great idea to pack some reminders of New Zealand to decorate your dorm room or wear around campus with pride.

9. A neck pillow

If you’re anything like me, travelling on trains, planes and automobiles usually results in some serious napping. An inflatable neck pillow is a super handy addition to any travel bag, folding down flat when not in use. Get a comfy sleep on a long journey and wake up refreshed for whatever destination may await you (also yes I may have taken mine to the library once during exams for a brief seated power nap…)

10. University of Auckland merchandise

The campus store in the quad has a wide range of quality tees, hoodies and other merch to purchase to represent UOA while abroad. You can also buy online here.



8 Reasons to Go on an Auckland Abroad Exchange

1. The weather!

We don’t get snow in Auckland, so maybe you want to spend a semester in a winter wonderland. Or maybe you want to spend the whole semester in swimming togs – we have exchange options for all!

2. You’ll make lifelong friends


We know it sounds cliché, but you really will make friends for life when you go on exchange. Being thrown into a brand new culture with a bunch of like-minded people seems to do that!

3. You can study off campus


Maybe you’re a politics student and you want to be studying in the heart of American politics and government in Washington D.C., or you’re a commerce student and want to be in a global business centre like London. You’ll not only enjoy exciting classes on campus, but you can explore your academic passions off campus.

4. You could be eligible for scholarships!


We know money is probably on your mind. Not to worry – Auckland Abroad has a generous budget for scholarships! You might be eligible for funding to go on your exchange. Not to mention the fact you’ll pay Auckland fees while you’re on exchange, and you could be eligible for the full range of Studylink loans and allowances.

5. The food!

If there were ever a reason to move across the world, food is it. Maybe you want to have pasta and pizza in Italy, poutine in Canada, or authentic sushi in Japan – you can do it on exchange! Find your inner foodie and go abroad.

6. You can take unique courses overseas and still finish your degree on time


When you go on exchange, the courses you take can be transferred back to your Auckland degree. If you plan it right, you could earn credits for your degree while studying overseas! And you can get an exemption for a gen ed, allowing you more flexibility within your degree. What’s not to like?

7. You’ll grow as a person


Yes, we know this also sounds cliché, but it’s true. Living overseas for a semester or a year will change you as a person. You’ll gain new experiences and grow personally, academically, and professionally. And it’s also true that going off to another country to further your academics looks pretty dang good on a CV!

8. And yes, the travel

When you’re on exchange, you’re going to want to make use of your weekends and holidays, and travel. Being closer than a 12 hour flight to some of the world’s most exciting places will be welcomed by both you and your wallet. Maybe you’re after a weekend in Paris or Berlin, or a day trip to Tokyo – the world is your oyster!

If we’ve convinced you to consider going abroad…

Come see us at Auckland Abroad during our office hours. You can get advice on available exchange programmes, how and when to apply, and more. Also, if we haven’t convinced you, come anyway. Because we will!

  • We’re located in the Kate Edger Student Commons on the 4th floor next to iSpace.
  • Office hours are from Monday to Friday, 2pm-4pm.

Also, check out our website for more information:

And, in an act of shameless self-promotion, follow us on social media:


By Michael Calderwood