I’ve been away from the UK for nearly 4 months now, and inevitably you end up missing people you are close to back home. If you’re planning on going on your year abroad to somewhere as far away as Australia, it is admittedly quite hard to catch a plane and head back home whenever you’re missing someone. However, this isn’t the 1800s, and nowadays there are a range of different ways in which you can still remain in contact with people back home
1 – Skype/Facetime
Skype is the obvious number one method of communication when it comes to maintaining contact with people elsewhere in the world. Sure, it buffers and cuts out a lot of the time, and when you’re missing someone five pixels aren’t always extremely comforting, but the fact that you can talk to someone for free instantly is seriously underappreciated. You won’t realise just how useful Skyping is until you’re on your year abroad, it’s the closest you can get to being with someone without actually being there.
2 – Facebook
Or as my Mum refers to it, ‘The Facebook’, this is another digital way to stay in touch with people. This is a bit easier because you don’t have to set aside a specific time to do it – you can just flick a message when you have a spare moment or throughout your day. Whatsapp, snapchat and other apps are good for this too. This is incredibly useful when there’s a big time difference between you and you can’t regularly arrange a time to Skype. While this may seem pretty obvious, you won’t realise how useful these apps are until you’re thousands of miles away.
3 – The Old Fashioned Way
Whilst it’s relatively easy to send an instant message or pick up a skype call, if you really want to let someone know that you’re missing them (speaking to all you hopeless romantics reading this) then a card or letter can be really useful. The old fashioned approach is great for when you want to go the extra mile and send someone a postcard or photos, and can also very useful when it comes to keeping up to date with technologically illiterate members of your family.
In my experience of being on a year abroad there are moments where you’re homesick, but keeping in close contact with friends, family and loved ones can help with that a lot, and in our day and age it is really easy to do so. If anyone is thinking of trying being in a long term relationship whilst studying abroad, then these methods of communication become essential, and make it a lot easier. Regardless, homesickness is only a small part of your year abroad experience, and mostly you’ll be too busy enjoying yourself to think about home!