How to combine travel with study

There are times when all you want to do is pack your bags and go travel. Have you ever done this? My friend and I did this at least twice per month. We did not spend weeks planning – we decided, we packed and we went. As easy as it sounds. Throughout this one year, while studying the MBA in International Hospitality and Service Industries Management, we have visited over a dozen countries and more than 25 cities abroad (not including Swiss cities/villages).

I have been asked countless times to describe how I managed to travel so much while pursuing the MBA and working on an Applied Business Project (ABP) with InterContinental Geneva. There is no golden answer to this question, but I will share my experience on how I picked up and improved the skills that made me able to manage this. Let’s start from the beginning…

Embracing global culture

I have been enrolled at Glion Switzerland to pursue the MBA degree. On our induction day, all of the new intake students were sitting together in a classroom. You could see that one room could fit approximately representatives from nearly 100 countries. That’s when the journey began.

The Swiss are great at time management. If your program director tells you he’ll meet you in seven and half minutes, he will meet you in exactly seven and half minutes.

When you become a member of Glion family, you’ll realize within seconds that you have friends from all over the world. You become familiar with all the cultures, and any country you’ll visit you will have the feeling that you already have been there, as you know people, their lifestyle and their culture. As if you returned back to your own country. The first thing I learned was that there are no borders, every door is open and the only thing you have to do is walk in. Walk into an unforgettable journey. After your first trip from campus, for the rest of your life, you will stop being a tourist and become a traveler.

Let me say a few words about Switzerland. What comes to your mind first when you think of Switzerland? Luxury watches? Luxury lifestyle? Cheese? Wine? Cause that’s all nonsense. From the very first day after landing in this country, I had the feeling that I lived in a fairytale. It is a country with its own colors. You can’t explore the whole country, even I could not do it during this one year. You just can’t get enough. Every day, no matter where you go, even if you are lost, you realize that the whole country is just a long series of postcard-perfect vistas. The ground throughout the year has either green or white color, towering snow-capped mountain peaks and lush green valleys, flawless lakes after flawless lakes, stunning villages, gorgeous nature and breathtaking views.

If you are deciding to enter the adventurous world of hospitality, this means you are curious about other countries. You have the passion to be familiar with all the cultures. You want to explore the world.

Effective time management

The Swiss are great at time management. If your program director tells you he’ll meet you in seven and half minutes, he will meet you in exactly seven and half minutes. Step by step, you realize 24 hours is a lot of time. You can have classes, presentations, meetings, conferences, workshops and an ABP, but still find the time to travel. You think I’m speaking only about Europe? Not at all. During our adventures, we went to Asia, the Middle East and Africa – all around the world. All you need to do is manage your time effectively. Understand the value of your time. You’ll start waking up early – by early, you should know that in Switzerland morning means 5am. You’ll stop wasting your time, by planning not only hours but minutes and seconds of your life.

By doing this, you will be able to travel not only while studying but even after graduation when you are working. Take our example, and don’t forget we managed to travel every week during this unforgettable year. This means you can do it. If you try, you will have even better results than ours.

Lastly, this is our profession. If you are deciding to enter the adventurous world of hospitality, this means you are curious about other countries. You have the passion to be familiar with all the cultures. You want to explore the world. And in the hospitality world, as I said before, you will stop being a tourist. You will be able to host any nationality in any country as you would do in your own country. You will become a global citizen.

Welcome on board. Welcome to the world.

Mako Panjavidze

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