Hello dear future students of SDSU, one thing in advance: look forward to an expensive but unforgettable time!
All in all, my preparation phase turned out to be very short. I actually planned to go to San Diego for just one summer session, but because of the overlap with the University of Göttingen (exams and seminars) I decided – thank goodness – for a whole semester.
Your website helped me a lot here, as the always friendly staff were always on hand to offer advice and assistance. The basic principle, however, is very simple. Register with your website in due time, wait for a confirmation, transfer the tuition fees and make an appointment at the embassy (here, get in touch in good time, that can sometimes take a while) By and large, you’ve actually built the basic framework for an awesome semester.
Well, the choice of course was one of those things. There are courses that are offered by ALI (the local organization for foreign students) and “normal” courses like those at your university probably too. The ALI courses are assigned by the organization, which means that you apply for the courses and you have to wait to see if you get the courses or not. In our semester it was all a little more complicated (it should be better now !!!), which is why a friend and I took the whole thing into our own hands and picked out the “other” courses. At the SDSU there is the so-called Course Crashin. That means that you go to the professors and ask them to be included in their course, which was no problem at all for us! Just go to the professors and ask
Accommodation and car:
First of all about the car: We bought a 93 Mercurry and it was simply a hit. We bought it for $ 2000 and then sold it again for the same price and 18000KM later. Others, however, had real problems with it. There are always enough offers on Craigslist (Internet platform where EVERYTHING is traded). We bought the car at a workshop back then and as I said, we were sooo happy and satisfied; because no matter what you think, how big San Diego is, it’s bigger and bigger. My advice: Go on a search and just have a look around the workshops and definitely have the car checked before you buy it. In addition to the long stretches, that many car rental companies only rent their cars for the greater San Diego area and therefore extra rental cars have to be rented for trips. Otherwise, look around, for example, dirtcheapcar or something. What I would like to recommend to you here is the AAA (Triple A). This is a kind of ADAC and really helps you with everything !! Both in travel preparation (hotels and routes, sights and and and) as well as having other advantages (e.g. discounts on admission to the zoo (10%) or at the outlets (just show the card at the information center in the outlet), etc. . Really highly recommended.
There is actually not much to say on the subject of housing. There is the Collage Area on the one hand and the Beach Area (Pacific Beach, Mission Beach or Ocean Beach) on the other. After a long search, we decided on Pacific Beach, as this is where most of the party goes. However, this area is also a bit more expensive. Rental prices are between 750 and upwards 😉 We paid about 1000 dollars / person through Vacation Rentals but we also had a direct beach location (and I mean a direct beach location) and a super cool house. It was worth every penny, but of course everyone decides for themselves.
We just went blind to San Diego, met a Dane there and shared the house with three of us. That was great. But here, too, you can find out more beforehand via Craigslist or roommates.com.
Prepare for an incredibly expensive semester! It is unbelievable how much money you can spend in such a short time. For example, the supermarkets are quite expensive for tourists. But there are so-called supermarket cards here. If you are there longer – and you will be – just ask for the “Ralphscard” (Ralphs is a supermarket) at the checkout and you will get the cheaper prices. And it’s really worth it. These cards are available for many supermarkets (Ralphs, Vons and and and). Well and of course the trips cost a lot. We were in San Francisco, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Tijuana, Hawaii, Grand Canyon, Antelope Canyon, Bryce Canyon Route 1 etc. I can only tell you: You are only there once and take the opportunity. Every single place was more than worth it. Further costs are the tuition fees (approx. 6000 $, but these are taken over by the Bafög office up to 4600 euros). Well, the rent is added, the parking lot at the university costs about 120 dollars for the time.
Unfortunately, I can’t tell you much about the collage area, except that it has to go well there. As I said, we ourselves lived in the PB (Pacific Beach). There is every Tuesday “Taco Tuesday” a great party in Typhoon and every Thursday (thirsty Thursday) in Beach Comber another party. But there is always something going on there on the other days as well. What is also recommended is the Wings Wednesday (5 wings only $ 1.25). Just google it (I forgot what the names are, but there are 3 in PB, the best is on Garnett Avenue). Garnett Avenue is the party mile in PB anyway.
Here are a few more tips: As far as the food goes, don’t go to Mc Donalds or something. Go to Danny’s or something. 5 Guys (great burgers) is very awesome and popular and if you like Smoke Houses you MUST go to Phil’s BBQ. This is one of the best restaurants in San Diego and is really cheap. I tell you I haven’t eaten better yet. The waiting times can, however, be up to 30 minutes. But it’s worth it!!
Otherwise visit Sea World and the zoo (there are cheaper tickets at the university). Drive to LA for a Lakers game! Whale watching is amazing. Be sure to fly to Hawaii !!!
Other cool routes are: San Diego à Las Vegas à Zion National Park à Antelope Canyon à Bryce Canyon à Grand Canyon and then via Route 66 (MUST drive through Oatman) back to San Diego.
Or San Diego via the Interstate to San Francisco and then on the way back via 17 Miles Drive along Route 1 via Montery, Carmel and Morrow Bay (I didn’t see Santa Barbara but it must be very beautiful).
I could go on writing so much, but I think I’ve told you a lot first.
Look forward to an unforgettable time. It was amazing!