Studying abroad will probably make you hate your uni town
Everyone dresses better over there and their clubs are less trashy
As clichéd as it is to spend a term abroad and return home complaining about how grim it is to be back in your normal, boring university, I’m going to do it anyway.
Flying into Dublin airport after almost six months away I was excited to see my parents at arrivals. I couldn’t wait to be home.
It lasted all of 12 minutes, until my Mum couldn’t find the ticket to get out of the airport car park. It was the beginning of the end for realising the disappointment of coming home from a glorious time studying abroad.
Once the novelty of seeing everyone you missed wears off the itch to get away from it all again sets in pretty quickly.
It sounds sad, but the biggest difference between us and mainland Europe, and possibly the thing I missed the most, was the impeccable public transport.
They have superb services, and back home all we have is “out of service” signs and long waits in lashing rain only for two buses to show up at once.
In Austria I was spoilt for choice, a six hour train journey from Budapest, Prague, Munich and other major cities. Buses run through the night abroad which cut out having to pay for taxis and a student could pay €150 for six months to get limitless train and bus journeys.
Drinking alcohol on public transport was also legal, enough said.
I could get to any glamorous European city overnight, and get pissed while I was doing it. It was as close to paradise as train travel gets.
Fashion wise British and Irish students are yet to strike a happy medium between homeless beggars by day and supermodels by night.
While away a Portuguese pal complimented me for dressing “casual” to class (Canterbury trackies and a hoody – I was hungover, alright), because he was tired of seeing girls with “perfect hair and clothing” like the ones in his home university.
He meant it as a compliment but from then on I was a lot more conscious of my comfy style when I went to class.
On a night out seeing a girl wearing eye shadow was as rare as having any loan left by November, and high heels are non-existent.
Apparently nights out don’t have to end in crippling pain and the next morning doesn’t have to start with scrubbing your face raw to get eye liner off before your 10am class.
Everyone is steadily chic and stylish throughout the day, and it feels so much better than going to uni here, where everyone dresses like a slob in class and is way too try-hard and dressy on a night out.
After spending a significant time away from clubs with awkward looking “sexy” dancers, fire breathers on the door and queue skips I can see how unnecessary and trashy British nightclubs can be.
Your club doesn’t look cool just because it’s decked out in tacky gimmicks and topless PR lads – it looks like it’s full of dickheads. Everyone should take their lead on how clubbing works in Europe.
It’s all about a big bar, a bigger dance floor, a DJ. That’s all you need and you’re good to go.
Really, I do love where I’m from, but after going somewhere so different coming home was always going to be depressing.
You can big up your uni city to your friends from school all day, but there’s a whole big wide world out there, and coming back to your boring town after seeing more of it is just a bit of a let down.