Preparing to return home
For those of you who will go back home soon, now it is time to start thinking of your return. If you think back to the months before coming to Vancouver you will probably remember that you spent a great deal making preparations for your travels and thinking about what life was going to be in Vancouver. Just as much thought now needs to be given to your return home.
You will probably have bought lots of things for you and your families and friends. It is important to consider that when travelling by plane you will be charge for extra weight so it is better and cheaper to get another luggage.
Make sure on the day before to your departure you have all your belongings ready to go; luggage(s), carry-on, personal bag, laptop, cell, chargers and most importantly your passport. As well as to remember to return the house keys and anything else you might have borrowed from your host family.
If you rented a cell, please remember to return it with the charger to the coordinator.
Readjusting to life after Vancouver (“reverse culture shock”)
When you came to Vancouver it might have taken you some time to get used to some aspects of life in here. You might be surprised to learn that returning home can also pose unexpected challenges. You will have changed while you have been away, and life back home will not have stood still. How you react to the process of readjustment will depend on many things, such as how long you spent away, your age, etc.
Family and friends
Some adjustment is required by both; the students and their families. Although you may have developed new ideas and customs while you have been away, your friends and family may expect you to be the same as when you left them. Your family and friends will also have changed during your trip. These events can make it more difficult for you to readjust to life at home.
Customs and ideas
During your stay in Canada you might have become accustomed to different customs and ideas. You may therefore find that you have to readjust in some of the following areas when you go home:
- Expression of opinions
- Preparing and serving food for yourself
- Methods of studying
- The way women and men are expected to behave
- Tolerance and respect to people no matter their origin, sex, age, religion, marital status, physical condition and economic status
- Bureaucratic procedures
Tips on helping you readjust
Most students soon adapt to their home culture without difficulty, but if you do experience any of the problems mentioned above, the following suggestions will help you to readjust.
- Be aware that “reverse culture shock” is a common reaction
- Educate your family and friends about this phase in your life
- Build on the skills of adaptation that you have developed in Vancouver
- Keep in touch with the friends you made in Vancouver and with the institute through the Alumni network and your host family
- Share your experiences with other students who have returned back to the country or with students that would like to do the same as you did
- Think about the future, and about the next challenge or goal that you wish to achieve