Student Blogs & Vlogs | College Study Abroad Programs, IFSA-Butler

Things I’ve Learned

Well I have been here in Costa Rica for two weeks of orientation and tomorrow I start my first classes! It has been a very exciting and peaceful experience so far! I am still working on figuring out how to attach pictures to posts, so until then, here is a list of tips and things I have learned so far:

  • You will always sweat, there is just no getting around it. Costa Rica is humid.
  • Rice is served at every.single.meal.
  • Showers are cold.
  • Speak Spanish- also note that everything and anything you learned in class is going to be different in every Spanish speaking country and nothing can prepare you for being immersed in a different language. You would think that after over seven years of practicing and learning Spanish that I would be a pro and know everything, but no.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions
  • Download MapsMe on your phone!!
  • Think of yourself as a Tico (Costa Rican). After all, you are a resident living here just like everyone else.
  • Living in the center of Heredia is great! It’s a short walk from everything and a cheap taxi ride too.
  • If the sun is down, take a taxi.
  • Remember: tranquila! (be calm, always, things will work out!).
  • Your host mom will do laundry 1-3 times a week, so skip packing the extra underwear and bring another pair of jeans or a shirt instead.
  • An umbrella will quickly become your best friend, and make sure to bring it with you everywhere.
  • Even though every $1 is roughly 500 colones, that does not mean that everything is cheap, things are very competitively priced.
  • ALWAYS throw out the toilet paper.
  • Don’t pet the stray animals.
  • A few pairs of shorts will be enough. Unless you are hiking or going to the beach, you’ll wear pants.
  • You will be starred at and pointed at- especially if you are a female and are blonde.
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