There are many things that can help you be safe while you are away. Know what to do to get oriented with your new surroundings and what to do if things do go wrong. It is important to protect yourself while you are away as well as to be a respectful traveler. Find out more about things to remember while away as well as what to do in an emergency situation.
Details the limits of services that Canadian government offices can provide to Canadian citizens abroad.
ROCA a free service offered by Foreign Affairs and International Trade that keeps you connected to Canada in case of an emergency abroad, such as an earthquake or civil unrest, or an emergency at home (available for Canadian citizens/permanent residents). It is strongly recommended that all Canadian students complete ROCA before departure
An online training session that provides you with information and tools that will help you prepare for a safe trip abroad.
To identify the embassy or consulate with responsibility for Canadians in your destination country.
For the contact information of diplomatic missions for most countries around the world:
After arriving at your destination it will be easy to get swept up in the adventure of your experience abroad. Remember to keep in touch with your family, friends and the International Centre after you arrive, and periodically throughout your trip, to let us know that you are safe and well.
Your Humber-issued email address is considered an official means of communication and will be used for correspondence from Humber. You are responsible for monitoring your Humber email account regularly while abroad.
Social media can be an excellent way to keep in touch with friends and family while abroad. Just as you would at home, however, consider how others will view your posts and pictures. Your readers will form an opinion about the people, cultures, and organizations you write about based on your comments. Be respectful in what you post and ensure that you represent others fairly. There will be days when you feel frustrated and/or homesick, but those feelings will pass. Be mindful posting on social media at these times as it may cause your family and friends to worry unnecessarily, when you’ve moved on. In addition, making negative comments on social media can have enduring consequences for you and those you have criticized, even when it’s not your intention.
As a traveler abroad, you are seen by others to represent not only yourself, but also your family, your community, Humber, your culture, your country and even your gender! You have a great opportunity to leave a positive impression by always acting responsibly, and by being open-minded and respectful of other people and cultures.
As a guideline, when you sign the required Student Out of Province Travel Activity Form you agree to:
Be aware of the image you present locally. Avoid behavior that will negatively affect that image – once an impression is made, it is hard to change.
No matter how carefully you plan your trip, from time to time things will go wrong. In these situations it’s natural to feel lost or overwhelmed, but remain calm and remember that there’s always a process to follow that will get you back on track.
If you regain possession of a passport that was reported lost or stolen, do not use it for travel. Report it immediately to the nearest Canadian government office abroad.
Carry information on how to contact Gobal Affairs Canada’s Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa, which operates 24/7 and accepts collect calls from Canadians overseas.
Clearly communicate to the arresting authorities that you would like to contact the nearest Canadian government office abroad of your arrest or detention immediately [or the mission of your country of citizenship if you are not Canadian]
Consular officials cannot arrange your release from prison. You are subject to the criminal justice system of the country where you are arrested and imprisoned. Review the assistance and support services that Consular officials can provide here.
Her Own Way >
A women’s safe-travel guide produced by Global Affairs Canada.
Homosexual, Bisexual and Transgender Travel >
Advice from Global Affairs Canada
ILGA: International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association >
Includes an interactive country by country climate information.
NAFSA Association of International Educators Rainbow Special Interest Group (SIG): >
The Rainbow SIG is comprised of diverse members of NAFSA whose goals are to counsel international students and study abroad students who are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered; to support gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered professionals in international education; to combat homophobia, heterosexism and transphobia within NAFSA.
MIUSA: Mobility International USA >
A non-profit organization whose mission is to mission is to empower people with disabilities to achieve their human rights through international exchange and international development.
Culture shock is a normal part of going abroad that all travelers experience at one point or another. It’s expected that you’ll feel stress while living in a new environment and dealing with new behaviours, words, facial expressions, values and attitudes that may be unexpected and quite different than what you’re used to.
Generally speaking, people experience culture shock in different stages. It’s important to keep in mind that each stage can vary in length and severity, and may reoccur over the duration of your time abroad.
After months of preparing to go abroad, you’ve finally arrived! You’re a bit jetlagged and overwhelmed, but basically everything feels new, exciting and interesting.
Slowly differences start to appear and make you feel irritated, frustrated and uncomfortable. Daily tasks like talking to others, shopping or navigating public transportation take more time and effort than you’re used to. You may start romanticizing life “back home”. You find that you’re not as excited and curious about your host culture as you were when you first arrived, and you want to spend more time by yourself or only with Canadians and other foreigners.
The crunch is over and gradually the local behaviors, sayings, and customs start to make sense. You become more comfortable, the culture feels more familiar, and you feel less isolated. Your sense of humour returns and you’re able to be more positive and balanced about the differences around you.
You accept and embrace cultural differences. You appreciate many of the local customs, ways of doing things, and points of view. You realize that you’ll miss the culture when you return home, and aren’t in a hurry to leave. Your host country now naturally feels like a “second home”.
When you recognize the symptoms of culture shock, you’ll be better prepared to deal with it and minimize the effects. If you realize that you’re experiencing culture shock, here are some coping strategies that you may find helpful.
Admit that you’re experiencing culture shock. It’s not a sign of weakness to admit that you’re feeling confused, overwhelmed, and frustrated. It’s the common experience of every traveler.
Take care of yourself. Eat well, exercise and take the time to sleep. Limit your alcohol consumption to moderate amounts.
Give yourself a break. Recognize the symptoms of culture shock and understand the pattern of adjustment. Learn how to control your reactions to stress and don’t try so hard to ‘fit in’ or adjust perfectly right away. Remember that culture shock is a normal and natural phenomenon that everyone goes through, so cut yourself some slack and take it one step at a time.
Learn the rules of living in your host country. Try to understand how and why the local people act the way they do. Their behaviour and customs, although they may be different from your own, are neither better nor worse than what you are used to.
Get involved in some aspect of the new culture. Whether you study art or music, or learn a new sport or martial art, being an interested student will make a world of difference.
Take time to learn the language. It always helps to understand as much as possible of what people are saying. They will appreciate your effort to communicate with them in their language, even if it is just a few simple phrases, and it will make your daily life much easier.
Travel. Take the time to be a tourist and explore the country’s sights.
Make friends and develop relationships. Getting to know local people will help you overcome cultural differences and understand the country. It will also show you how to be more sensitive to cultural norms and expectations.
Maintain contact with friends and family back home. Writing home about your experiences and problems can help you sort through them. It is also a good idea to keep a journal of your feelings and thoughts.
Do something that reminds you of home. Listening to your favourite music or practicing a familiar hobby can boost your spirits when you are feeling homesick.
Avoid idealizing life back home. Try to make the most of your stay and consciously adopt an open mind.