How many of you have had issues with accommodation? Probably most of you.
Here are our top 5 advice accommodation-wise in order for you to avoid scams we hear about every day, and get the best out of the worst, because, let’s get real none of us will be living in a luxurious villa with a pool.
- Be in contact with your employer.
In many cases, your employer is the one who will provide a contact of the person who will be renting you a place. Internet is your best friend (as always)- search craigslist.com, airbnb.com, Facebook groups and our portal in order to look into other people’s experiences. Ask your employer to send you the exact address and photos of the place you will be staying at.
Also, keep checking whether the deal is still on. Do not be lazy. The last thing you want is to look for a place to stay in the middle of the night in a city far away from home where you do not know a singel person.
Kaca shared with us one unpleasant surprise she experienced upon her arrival in the US.
“Before getting our visas approved, me, my friend and two guys made a reservation in a motel where students usually live. After getting our visas approved, one week before going overseas, we found out there was no more space in the motel. We kept in touch with a woman working in a motel, everything was fine a week before, one guy arrived before us to get a room and he was told there were none left.”
In the end, Kaca and her friend found accommodation in a house full of Serbs.
“Later everything turned out fine. We were basically inseparable and we lived like a real family.”Look for the accommodation of your own.
2. Look for the accommodation on your own.
If you employer does not tell you that you have to live at a certain address during the whole program, don’t be lazy and search online. Use the aforementioned websites (craigslist, airbnb, maybe even booking.com). Feel free to ask questions in one of the many Facebook groups dedicated to the W&T program. Try to get in touch with the person from our portal who worked and lived in the town you will be going to. First-hand experience and advice are always welcome. You will need some time, but it will pay off only if you do not want to end up in some cave or somebody’s basement with 10 more people you did not choose to live with. 🙂
- Be prepared to share a room with 5 more people. From all over the world.
Sharing room with strangers certainly does have its advantages. It is true that you will become more tolerant than ever and learn many new things about human nature and various cultures from all over the world. Prepare to be extremely patient and understanding. There people are not your friends… yet. 🙂
4. Learn how to use microwave.
Believe us, you will become professionals. During the program forget about the food you ate back home. There is no home-made anything, your mom will not be there to prepare all the delicious food. You will have to do it yourself. And you do not have any time to cook. Most people live in motels during the program and all they have is a mini-fridge and a microwave. Microwave will become your best friend (you will learn how to make an omlet in a microwave, yes, it happened to some). Use every opportunity to eat something cooked, whether at work or at somebody’s house. These moments are invaluable.
- Keep your money in a safe place.
It is true that you will not be spending any time in your motel/house, because you will spend many nights there and go back to work as soon as you wake up. However, make sure the neighbourhood is safe.
You should always be careful and observant. Keep all the money in the bank, do not keep it under the mattress, among your underwear, or at the bottom of your suitcase. People looking for it will find it.
Useful information about accommodation can be found on our portal http://eworkandtravel.com/search-housing/
Be smart and keep sending us your stories! 🙂
This post is also available in: RS