Be aware that the voltage is different in the U.S. than in most places in the world. Example: U.S. 110v, Europe 220v. Other countries have = different outlets and different frequencies. Research the voltage, outlet, and frequency of your host country before you leave.
It is often cheaper to buy adapters and converters online in the U.S. than to buy them in your destination country. Plan to purchase a hairdryer and other similar products in your host country. Keep in mind that adapters do not convert electricity. They only change the plug to fit the foreign wall outlet. A converter is needed in order to convert the electricity.
If you decide to take your laptop abroad, you should know that wireless Internet is not as prevalent and accessible in all parts of the world and your computer may not be as useful as you think. That being said, if you take your laptop abroad, make sure you have the right hardware. Most laptops have built-in converter that will take care of the voltage difference, but some do not! Consult the manufacturer of your laptop before you leave to see if you need a converter. In addition to the converter, most computers will need a basic adapter to change the plug.
Lock it up. If you are going to be using a computer in your dorm, university, or in a neighborhood café, consider purchasing a laptop lock cable. This is an inexpensive way to protect your computer from theft.
Most programs will suggest a phone provider to students that will both rent a phone and provide phone service. Prices vary depending on the country and services provided. Some students may have a cell phone capable of working overseas and may wish to buy or rent a SIM card from an overseas provider instead of renting the complete phone. If you are studying abroad for a very short period, you should ask your U.S. provider the cost of calls while roaming in another country. If your program does not provide any cell phone service, you may decide to rent one from Cellhire or a similar phone rental company.
To make calls home to the United States from your host country, we recommend you look into free online methods such as Skype, iChat, MSN Messenger, etc. With these services, you are able to video chat with your parents and friends free of charge.
If you intend to travel with your U.S. smart phone, there are many free or inexpensive apps that you can use with a WiFi connection to call, text, or voice message friends and family in the U.S. These apps include, but are not limited to, HeyTell, Skype, Viber, Voxer, and WhatsApp.
To call home from a cell phone or landline, you must know how to dial internationally. The standard code is listed below; however, this code varies in some countries. You should consult HowtoCallAbroad.com for international country codes and exit codes and to learn how to dial out.
00 + 1 + 662 + 325-8929
standard international code + area code + 7-digit phone number