Studying abroad is a great way to find what your passions are all the while discovering who you are abroad. While this is a great opportunity for LGBTQIA+ students to discover more about themselves, there can be challenges to this as well. Several countries around the world have different perspectives and beliefs on the LGBTQIA+ community. Some countries are more accepting of the LGBTQIA+ community than others. Some countries do not accept students who have a sexual orientation or gender identity that is outside their social norms. To get the best out of your study abroad experience, you should research the country you desire to study abroad to before you depart. There are resources below to aid in this process.
As you begin your process to study abroad, it is important to consider key questions regarding differences you may experience based on cultural values, social customs, and the laws of your country(ies) of interest. Some questions you could look into could be:
- What are the attitudes towards the LGBTQIA+ community in my host country of interest?
- Does my right to be LGBTQIA+ conflict with my host country's religious or cultural values and traditions?
- What is the social perception of LGBTQIA+ people in my host country?
- What roles to transgender people play in the host culture?
- Do my host country's laws differ from those of my home country?
- What resources are available to those in the LGBTQIA+ community in my host country such as friendly establishments (restaurants, hangouts, stores, or online resources?
GlobalGayz is a travel and culture website focused on LGBT-Gay life worldwide: In-person Stories, archived News Reports and Actual Photos. Life, Sites and Insights.
This organization a driving force for political, legal, and social change in Europe and Central Asia. Their vision is of a world where human rights are protected and ensured to everyone regardless of their actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression and sex characteristics. The web site has a range of resources including benchmarking reports, newsletters, videos, etc.
ILGA World State - Sponsored Homophobia Report
This report has a survey of what sexual orientation laws are prevalent around the world.
The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association
This provides country by country climate information on things like homophobia. They also have resources that educates LGBTQIA+ students abroad.
LGBTQIA+ Travelers - U.S. Department of State
The U.S. Department of State has resources for LGBTQIA+ students looking to study abroad.
National Center for Transgender Equality
They offer air travel tips for transgender people.
Tips for Flying While Trans: The Transgender and Non-Binary Travel Guide You Didn't Know You Needed
This site offers travel information for transgender people.
Trans Respect vs. Transphobia Worldwide
This web site provides country-specific guides detailing the human-rights situation of trans and gender-diverse people.
Utopia - Gay and Lesbian Resources in Asia
This site provides resources for Gay and Lesbian students headed to or in Asia.