By Elizabeth Snow, Foster Undergraduate who participated in an exchange with the University of Economics in Prague, Czech Republic.
Prague has got to be one of the most beautiful, deeply enriching and exciting city in Europe. Well, I might be a bit biased after 4 months there but regardless I continue to recommend visiting—better yet, studying abroad there! Prague is incredibly cheap compared to many other westernized places, and I was able to eat delicious food most any day of the week for a very low budget. The beer is also delicious, and much cheaper than water in a lot of places. While it was difficult to maintain the healthiest life style (second-hand smoke everywhere, lots of beer, and the yummy but filling Czech food), you won’t be disappointed.
The student deals here are great, making transportation and living very easy! I highly recommend living in the provided dorms as most as renovated and cost a fraction of the prices in the Seattle. You typically share a room with 1 roommate, and a common space with another 2 people but under special request you might be able to have your own room. The dorm itself is a bit depressing from the outside (think a concrete prison of sorts), but the atmosphere inside is wonderful! The front desk is helpful usually, and speak decent enough English. The dorm is located about 10 minutes from the school by tram and another 15-20 minutes from the city center but you don’t ever feel overwhelmed by the distance.
A day in a typical life for me in Prague went a little like this: Wake up at a pretty painless time, usually around 10:30 and hop on the tram on my way to school. I would take a slight detour and head to the local farmers market near the university and pick up coffee (amazing) and a quick breakfast (also delicious) for ~90 CZK which comes to be about 3 dollars. With a quick walk, I’m at the university and sit through a couple hours of class. There are a bunch of international students from m y dorm in my class, so we chat about our plans and catch up. After classes, I might meet up with my friends for a quick trip to get food or go grocery shopping. We also might just take a few hours exploring a neighborhood or going shopping in the center. During the fall when the weather was nice, we would go to some of the famous Czech beer gardens which offer great views of the city plus a very local feel with live music, cheap beer and good food! Plus, they are usually in the middle of beautiful parks so it was a win-win. Afterwards, we all head back to the dorm where we do a bit of homework (never that much) and then make evening plans! We eat dinner later which is either prepared in the fun, communal kitchen downstairs, made quickly in our own rooms or at a local restaurant. After dinner, we have a few drinks and get ready to go out to clubs! After a long night at the club, we make it home sometimes as late as 6 am to start again the next day. Very tiring, but well worth the experience.