University: San Diego State University
City: San Diego
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: business administration
Study type: semester abroad
Hello, my dears,
So my experience report begins with the application for a visa at the US consulate in Frankfurt. I applied for the visa at the same time as my girlfriend who went to a language school in San Diego. To get straight to the point, my girlfriend got her visa in 4 days and I had to wait over 5 weeks. So here’s a clear recommendation: “Apply for the visa as early as possible”. At least 2 adapters for the American power grid and all the paperwork come with you. If you are considering buying a car there, here are some very important things you should consider: Before my trip to the USA, I wanted to get a new cell phone anyway and I decided on a Nokia (5800), It was relatively cheap and I only really appreciated the advantages of this cell phone in the USA, such as the free navigation with all maps of the world, so I had a sat nav there that really caused me a lot of stress has saved. In addition, the mobile phone has WiFi, so during my travels I could use the Internet for free at every Mc Donald’s, in every hotel and also at the university. Of course, it doesn’t necessarily have to be this cell phone, but consider whether such functions might be useful for you. See act-test-centers for UCB Study Abroad.
But now to buying a car in the USA. I found a lot of cars on craigslist (just google it) and almost bought one there, but then I found an ad in the StudiVZ in a group on the SDSU and bought a car for 2,000 USD from a student from Germany who was also at the SDSU had studied. Before you buy it, have the car checked out by a workshop, I also recommend that you do so so that there are no nasty surprises.
Now we come to the somewhat difficult topic of car insurance. Since insurance companies are very reluctant to insure students from other countries, it was not possible to do this online. But it went to Geico by phone, a very large insurance company in the USA, and their service was really TOP. So here’s the recommendation, if you also have problems finding insurance, just try calling Geico. (Here’s another little tip: Let them call you back, I called over 30 dollars by the time I had given all my data!)
Which is the perfect transition to the topic of phone calls in the US. I decided on a prepaid card from T-Mobile and here’s a tip: Buy the card without a cell phone and top it up with $100 straight away, because that’s where you get the best value for money and the credit is valid for a whole year.
If you are looking for a cheap way to call Germany from the USA, I can recommend two options:
- An account with Skype, I think it costs 5 euros per month, so you can make unlimited calls to German landlines
2. Or you can get a so-called call-by-call card; I got the card from “Euroking” for 10 USD. This card has no “connection fee” and I had 1,000 minutes to German landlines. Simply call the service number from a telephone booth, then enter the code and enter the German number…DONE! No additional costs, but be careful and don’t do it from your mobile phone, because that costs a lot of fees, as I found out the first time.
I already have an account with the DKB and can use it to withdraw cash worldwide free of charge. However, some banks charged a fee, which I got back from the bank without any problems.
Together with my girlfriend, I chose an apartment that ran through the service provider San Diego Student Housing (just google it). This is an apartment complex for students with a pool, whirlpool, fitness room, cinema, BBQ area and and and…everything is really very chic and new. We had an apartment that we shared with 2 other roommates from South Korea. We had our own bedroom with built in closet and ensuite bathroom. Our roommates had the same and their own balcony. We then shared the kitchen and living room. The apartment is fully furnished and you don’t need to buy anything new. Rent was $500 each, so $1,000 per month total for the room. If there are two of you and you share the room, that’s really fine, considering everything is included in that price. A monthly cleaning was also included and the trolley station is also right in front of the door, which goes directly (without changing trains) to the university.
Going to uni, San Diego State University is really beautiful and was by far the coolest time of my life. The university has a huge campus, many shops, a basketball stadium, fitness studio and and and…
I did 2 masters courses there, a surf course and a language course to get the necessary credits and be considered a full-time student.
The lecturers are very nice and if there are any problems, you can talk to them after the lecture and discuss the problems with them in a normal way.
So that’s it, I hope this report could prepare you a bit more for your trip.