Ready to Go to Greece
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need a passport?
YES!!! Please visit the U.S. State Department travel pages (www.travel.state.gov/passport) for the most up-to-date information regarding passport application and fees.
Do I need a visa?
YES!!! Click here for more information about visas.
What about insurance?
Arcadia University enrolls all participants in a health and accident insurance plan with HTH Worldwide. The plan covers the costs of treatment for most sicknesses and injuries up to $500,000 with no deductible. Details of this coverage are outlined in the health and accident insurance section of our website. Specific questions should be addressed to the insurance carrier. Please note that Arcadia University does not provide insurance for your possessions. We encourage you to purchase coverage for them or to leave irreplaceable valuables at home.
Will I get the courses that I requested on my initial application or course selection form?
Please be sure to make your course selections based on the list of available classes for your semester in Athens. Every effort will be made to enroll you in the courses you request but many things can happen between the time you submit your course form and the beginning of your semester in Athens. It is essential that you also register for two alternate courses.
Will my credits transfer back home?
Only your home college can answer this question, so be sure and safe – ask now, and obtain all the approvals you'll need. For more information regarding credit transfer policies, please visit the "Credits/Grades/Transcripts" section of our website.
Should I make copies of my papers?
Yes. Many home colleges want to review the work you completed overseas before final credit is awarded. Unless you make specific arrangements with your tutors prior to departure, final exams and/or papers will not be returned to students. It is important to keep copies, therefore, of your papers, reading lists and syllabi from all of your courses.
How should I carry my money?
Bring an ATM card that is linked to a U.S. bank account. Check with your bank for possible charges and other information on using your ATM card in Greece.
Do not bring travelers’ checks as there is only one Greek bank that will cash them and they charge a significant fee to do so.
Is there any financial aid to study abroad?
Arcadia University has a scholarship fund for accepted students. See the Fees and Financial Aid section of our website or call our office for further details. Ask the study abroad adviser on your campus about other financial aid possibilities and investigate the Stafford loan and the Plus loan scheme.
Shall I take my computer?
The Arcadia Center in Greece and all the student apartments are equipped with wireless so consider bringing your laptop with you. There is a printer in the Arcadia Center for student use. And be sure your stuff is insured! (See the section on Security and Insurance under "What to Pack".)
Do I need a transformer or converter for my laptop/camera charger/etc.?
Electric current in Greece is stronger than in the U.S. (U.S. 110 / Greece 220 volts). Unless your laptop and camera charger is more than 5 years old, it probably is set to work on either 110 volts or 220. This means you will not need a transformer or converter but you will need a plug adapter. Electric wall sockets in Greece are 2-pronged and called Type F Schuko. You will need a simple plug adapter like the one here: http://traveloasis.com/power-adapter-3.html. These are easily available in Athens.
What's the weather like?
All of us think of Greece as sunny and warm. The cold, damp and sometimes windy weather from late October until March will therefore come as a surprise. Houses and even public buildings are built to stay cool in summer, which means many are downright cold in winter. Central heating frequently isn't turned on during the day. Be prepared with a few sweaters!
Will I feel culture shock?
Greece may not be "shocking," but it will be different. Returning students report feeling "out-of-it" when they arrive overseas and when they first return to the U.S. Read the section on Culture Shock for more detail.
What happens when I arrive in Athens?
There are several answers to this question depending on where your Athens flight originated, what country issued your passport and whether you are traveling on the Student Universe flight or independently.
- Assuming you are flying on a U.S. passport, if Athens is your first stop in the Schengen Zone, you will have to go through passport control and get your passport stamped.
- If, however, you traveled through another country, as is usual with flights from the U.S. to Greece, your U.S. passport was probably stamped as you passed through the transit passenger area of that interim airport; probably because not all passport control officers operate in the same way. In terms of crossing borders, think of the Schengen Zone as a European version of the United States where you can easily travel from state to state without passing through any identification points. For the Schengen Zone, this means that passengers on all inter-Schengen flights from Schengen (like Frankfurt or Amsterdam to Athens) do not have go through passport control.
- If your passport is not stamped anywhere, do not worry but be sure to keep a copy of your itinerary. This will be necessary in place of a stamp in your passport when you register with immigration in Athens.
Find the baggage carousel that services your flight and collect your bags. Once you have collected all of your bags, you exit through the "nothing to declare" channel of the customs area, unless you are carrying dutiable goods (more information is available on the State Department's website).
If your bags do not appear, report them at the lost luggage desk and use the Arcadia Center address for delivery:
115 36 Pagrati
210 75 25 318
Travelers on the Student Universe Flight:
If you arrive on a suggested Student Universe flight, a member of the Arcadia Athens staff will meet you at the airport. You and your luggage will travel on a minibus to your apartments. However, if you fly with the Student Universe option but, for some reason, miss the planned flight because of issues with connecting flights, for instance, you must travel to your apartment as outlined in the Independent Travelers section below.
If you are an independent traveler, bring some € with you or use your ATM card at one of the many machines in the arrivals lounge. Buy a phone card from the newsagent and call the Arcadia Athens office so that they know you've arrived. Exit the terminal and find the taxi rank. As an independent traveler, you will have received directions to your apartment in Greek to share with a taxi driver. A member of staff or one of your roommates will meet you at your apartment.
How soon after the program concludes will I received my Arcadia University transcript?
We will send an official copy of your transcript to your home school and an unofficial copy to you. Transcripts for fall program students are usually issued by the end of February. Transcripts for academic year and spring program student are usually issued by the end of September. Your transcript will be withheld by Arcadia University if you have an outstanding balance on your account resulting from nonpayment of the program fee (in whole or in part) or special course surcharges, any late fees or returned check fees, damage charges, library fines, or other unmet financial obligations as deemed appropriate by Arcadia University.