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CGE Storyteller: Cam Breeden | Travel Tips as a Study Abroad Student in Italy

Cam Breeden | Spring 2024

Hello! This is Cam Breeden, and I’m excited to be sharing with you my third blog post as a study abroad student in Florence, Italy. In my previous blog, I focused on how classes here in Italy compare to classes back in the United States. Now, I want to talk a bit about traveling in and around Italy, and maybe offer a few suggestions for those planning to travel during their time abroad. So far, I have traveled to both Pisa and Milan here in Italy, as well as a weekend trip up to Interlaken, Switzerland. Each trip has been amazing, and I look forward to seeing even more beautiful parts of the world within the next two months. 

Beginning with traveling methods: So far, I have used both the train system and bus rides to get from one place to another. I’m a big fan of the train system here in Italy, primarily due to the simplicity of acquiring train tickets and the views of Italy that can be seen as the train makes its way to the destination. Train tickets can be acquired both at the station and online, but I recommend doing it with a phone or laptop prior to the day of the trip, as this method helps to save time. For someone like myself who was raised in a small town, the train stations themselves can be a bit hectic. However, as long as you give yourself a fair amount of extra time to get there and to find your train, there should be no problem. It’s much better to be in your seat slightly early as opposed to running through the train station frantically trying to find your train.

As for the buses, this is another effective method of traveling here in Italy. For my trip to Switzerland, my friends and I used a student tour operator known as Smart Trip*. You book with them or another tour operator online, and they have your bus ride and housing prepared in advance, you just have to show up. I highly recommend these student tour operators, as they are staffed with former study abroad students who can provide great food and activity recommendations wherever you decide to go. I have yet to fly anywhere since arriving in Italy, but I have flights booked for our upcoming spring break to Morocco, Africa, and to Málaga, Spain.

In summary, I recommend both the train system and bus rides when it comes to traveling as a study abroad student in and around Italy. Flying may be quicker, but trains and buses are a great way to save money while still seeing all sorts of beautiful destinations. I intend to continue using these methods of travel to see other parts of Italy and Europe, and I encourage you to do the same if you decide to study abroad here. That’s all for now, ciao!


*Please note: The University of Tennessee and Center for Global Engagement does not endorse organizations mentioned or used by students. Suggested external resources are meant to assist students but are not monitored or maintained for accuracy or quality control.


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