Friday, May 30, 2014

Exciting day!

Friday is always a good day! People everywhere seem to be in a better mood with the weekend right around the corner. Add warm weather and sunshine and today was set to be a good day. A typical Friday became an even more exciting day when the final itinerary showed up from Cornelia! I guess you could say it was the confirmation that the study abroad trip is very quickly approaching! 

Prework this week is focused on the cost of goods in the three countries we are visiting vs. the cost of goods here in the United States. Students looked up items such as a can of Coke, a gallon of gas, an iPhone, a loaf of bread, etc. I think there were some surprises to say the least! We complain about high gas prices here in the US, but that same gallon of gas is double (very close to $7 USD) in the Czech Republic. Comparing costs of items should be helpful as students figure out their final personal budgets for meals, spending money, souvenirs, etc. In other prework assignments, I asked the students to research things to do when we have free time. Our schedule is quite packed and when we have smaller blocks of time (2-4 hours), I want the students to be familiar with attraction options so we aren't spending an hour each time trying to find out what the options are. We've also looked at restaurants and meals options since we are individually responsible for most meals. I know there are plenty of options and we will run into plenty of cafe options. However, this exercise again contributes to assisting students determine their budget and gain a better understanding for the local foods. A few students have commented on being quite picky in terms of eating but each have mentioned it is their goal to stay away from American fast food abroad.

To close, I will return to discussion of the itinerary. I knew it would be busy, but the final itinerary officially confirms it. We will visit 4 countries in 15 days, use 3 different currencies (four if you count the USD), visit 10 companies, go on 7 walking tours of the different cities, museums, and castles, stop by and visit a college in Prague, and still manage to have some good chunks of free time. Many of the company visits are multinational companies and these visits should be a great learning opportunity for our students to talk and learn more about international business. We have very little free time in Budapest, more free time in Vienna, and a full day in Prague at the end of the trip. I'll elaborate more on specific company visits and attractions my next few posts.

I'm signing off for tonight! In the spirit of the upcoming trip, I've looked up "Good night" in Hungarian. (see below)

 Jó éjszakát (Pronounced yo A-sa-kaht),

Allison Hoffmann

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