14 Jul Safe, not sorry—Top 5 Travel Safety Tips

[caption id="attachment_2232" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Safety when traveling is important! Always be aware of your surroundings.[/caption] Safety when traveling should be of utmost importance to all travelers—especially those of you who may be embarking on your first trip or study abroad in the near future. These basic safety tips will help ensure that you have the best time possible while traveling: Know your stuff—read up on where you’ll be traveling to. It is wise to familiarize yourself with the better and not so great areas of town, customs, festivals, food facts, and more. This way, you are less likely to catch yourself in a cultural “oops”—an embarrassment and sometimes big trouble. Write it down—arm yourself with a journal or notebook specifically for writing down addresses of where you’ll be staying, phone numbers, emails, restaurants, etc. It is important to physically write these things somewhere instead of just storing them in a phone or tablet—although having this information in two places is never a bad idea, either. Be aware of your surroundings—my high school health teacher always used to bark this at us during our self defense unit freshman year…and while I found it annoying and unnecessary then, it is so important! Always, always, always be aware of your surroundings. Often times, your intuition is a great sense of danger. This is key in keeping yourself safe on traffic jammed streets, in airports or train stations, and especially when traveling alone. Even if you’re trying to...

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09 Apr Why I Applied for Dual Citizenship

Let me be the first to say that I am a proud American. I have lived here for 32 years and been though the prosperity of the Clinton administration and the subsequent disaster of the Bush administration (financially speaking). I take a rather poignant been there, done that attitude when it comes to travel and landmarks within the States. I have lived in San Francisco (twice), Washington, DC, and Tampa, FL; and I am about to relocate to the Netherlands as part of Panrimo’s plan to open a European office and continue to provide the best programs in Europe. [caption id="attachment_1704" align="alignnone" width="960"] Canal in my town of Utrecht[/caption] Before I introduce the benefits of being a dual EU/US citizen, allow me to share how I obtained my Italian citizenship (Disclaimer: This is meant for educational purposes only and not as an official authority on how to obtain citizenship. The fact that I even have to state that gives you an idea of why I am heading to Europe). Step 1: Do I qualify for Italian Citizenship? Yes. My grandfather was naturalized in the US after my father was born. Step 2: Obtain Grandfather’s Birth records from Italian Comune This was located in his birth town of Terrasini, Sicilia. Step 3: Search for Index Number of my Grandfather’s upon arrival into the USA The USCIS website allows you to look up the index number Step 4: Order Grandfather’s US Naturalization forms (certified) from USCIS Not too...

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08 Sep Passport Peril

It’s time. That chance which only presents itself once a decade. Two seconds which can make or break you. It’s time to retake your passport photo. Deep breaths! Yes, the last photo was…not great, but surely you’ve learned from that, right? This time your picture will correctly resemble a savvy world traveler and not the angry, frazzled, maniacal snapshot, which caused so many immigration officials to do a double take. You’ve practiced taking plenty of non-smiling, face front, strictly beige background photos in the past few years, correct? No? And you’re aware they don’t accept instagram selfies? Uh oh… Before this gets out of hand, let Panrimo give you 5 quick tips on how to take a decent passport photo without the help of a professional photographer or makeup artist. Just remember to: Pick Your Time Are you the early bird who gets the worm, or the owl who stays up all night? Taking a good photo is much easier when you’re energized. Being wide-awake cuts down on droopy eyes, disgruntled expressions, and dark circles under your eyes. So choose your best time of day, it will make the whole experience more pleasant. Groom Appropriately Ladies: Keep the makeup natural, there’s no need for a full face of warrior paint. A little lip-gloss, concealer, and mascara will be perfect for a fresh, attractive id photo. Gentlemen: Shave. For those with permanent facial hair, be sure you trim up the ‘stache and even the eyebrows, it will look much better...

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24 Jul Travel Safe, Travel Smart

[caption id="attachment_933" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Watch out world, here she comes![/caption] http://cdn.sheknows.com/articles/woman-traveler.jpg Whether your trip is going to last 1 week or 1 year, a safe traveler is an informed traveler. Guidebooks and travel agencies are always good sources of information, but for the most up-to-date info, the following 5 websites are the best sources: 5) The Center for Disease Control: www.cdc.gov/Features/StudyAbroad/ The CDC maintains a special section of its vast and informative website specifically for addressing the concerns and questions of study abroad students. With information on everything from country-specific vaccination requirements to how to assemble your own travel health kit, this is definitely one of the first sites you should consult in getting ready for your adventure. 4) Overseas Security Advisory Council: https://www.osac.gov/pages/home.aspx OSAC closely monitors all incidents involving American citizens overseas and is a very reliable source for current warnings or advisories regarding Americans abroad. Though some of their reports and surveys make for dense reading, they are very informative and will give you a good idea of what to look out for. 3) Federal Bureau of Investigation http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/investigate/counterintelligence/student-travel-brochure-pdf Though some of the tips might seem a bit overly-cautious to experienced travelers, that’s the FBI’s job! Their guide to traveling safely abroad is well organized and easy to read, it also offers a range of tips on everything from dressing appropriately to protecting your electronic devices from viruses and hacking. 2) Federal Aviation Administration http://www.faa.gov With all of the recent tragedies involving aircraft, the FAA has been even...

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