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15 Experiences Both Freshers and Backpackers Share

So your bags are packed, you’re saying your goodbyes and you’re ready to start a new adventure. Whether this is in a new city as a fresher, or as a backpacker about to travel around the world, it really doesn’t matter, as they’re pretty much the same thing.

So if you doubted the choice you made when deciding whether to head straight to university or to take a gap year first, here is a list of experiences (good and bad) that you’ll soon realise you get out of both…

1. They’re both new adventures.

So you’re leaving the nest and safety of your mum’s cooking to set off on your own to fend for yourself. Whether this is to a new city or another part of the world – it doesn’t matter – you’re about to start a new adventure.

I'm going on an adventure

2. You meet loads of new friends.

One of the best  parts about starting University or travelling is all the new friends you’ll make. You’ll meet them on the bus, in a queue for tickets, in your flat/dorm… basically everywhere and anywhere.

One day you’ll look through your phone contacts and half the names in there will be saved as things like ‘Dave from Bus’, ‘Crazy Drunk Guy’ and ‘Becky Kebab Shop’ and you definitely won’t recognise half the names on your Facebook news feed. But you will eventually find a few friends for life.

3. You constantly have conversation deja vu.

At times you’ll feel like you’re having constant deja vu, as you’ll be having the same conversations over and over again. “Where are you from?” “What are you Studying?” “Where are you staying?” “How long are you travelling for?”

deja vu

4. Living on a tight budget.

You will end up eating pot noodles as you’ve spent all your money on alcohol. Speaking of…

 5. Partying.

Everyone loves to party, but this is a particular favourite past time of most freshers and backpackers. Prepare your liver – it’s about to take some abuse.


6. Drinking Games.

You will soon become an expert in beer pong and flip cup and have the rules of Ring of Fire burnt into your mind (although everyone’s rules are different which is always confusing), along with a whole host of other drinking games that you never new existed.


 7. Getting homesick.

At some point it’s pretty much guaranteed that you’ll get homesick. You’ll miss your friends, your family, your cat/dog… It will pass, don’t worry.


8. Getting properly sick.

At some point you’ll end up getting really sick too, it’s inevitable. Whether it’s fresher’s flu or after eating something weird, it happens to the best of us. It’s pretty rough going but you’ll always survive with vitamin tablets.

 9. You’ll have lots of new experiences.

There are so many new things waiting to be tried at University and whilst traveling. You could end up joining the pole dancing society or dancing with a local tribe – whatever happens you’ll have some amazing new experiences.


10. Boredom.

So unfortunately it’s not all fun and games. There will always be times when you’re bored out of your mind, waiting for a bus or in a really long lecture. But luckily it never lasts too long.


11. Getting Lost.

You will end up getting completely lost when trying to find your next lecture, the bus station, or your hostel. Thankfully most people are friendly enough to help you out.


 12. Fancy Dress.

You will end up in fancy dress at some point, whether in first year or travelling. But seeing as both involve living on a budget, costumes can often become pretty creative…

13. You’ll learn something new.

Even if you don’t try, you’ll learn something. Whether it’s about the course you’re studying, local customs and culture or yourself – it will happen.

 14. Communicating via Skype/Face Time.

These may become a big part of your life and you will come to appreciate them and how easy they make it to stay in touch with your friends.


 15. You’ll have the time of your life.


Plus, if you still feel like you’re missing out, you can always go and do the alternative afterwards anyway!

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