Christmas presents: How best to spend your money
1. Buy a Kindle: You’ll be able to read thousands of great foreign books, at the cost of a mere £150 (depending on which model) and more importantly, with a weight inferior to 300g. Proust’s A la recherche du temps perdu was never so digestible...
2. Get an ipod Touch: Most definitely the real deal. Get the latest foreign music, news and even the stock-market's latest fluctuations, straight to your phone. With an app for everything, you are bound to find your favourite language-learning piece of kit in the Apple online store (check this one out!). You can set up your skype account, so you’ll forever stay in touch with your foreign friends, and failing that, you can set up a Twitter account in no time, getting the latest language news suited to your needs/interests...
3. Buy a digital dictionary: Make your year abroad-ing life a whole lot easier by having an absolutely HUGE dictionary on your computer/iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad. Breeze through weight restrictions at the airport, access extensive vocabulary without need for internet access, find related phrases and use the verb conjugation and flash card tools. Easy as torta.
4. Failing that, get an ipod Nano: No, not just because you’ve got the most amazing foreign music collection. You can download podcasts from foreign radio stations, looking for something to do with humour, political issues, concerts, day-to-day debates or just a run of the news...Well worth every penny, plus you can store your own playlists on them, too.
5. Invest in a Language Institute membership: Getting your (woolly) mitts on one of these entitles you to discounted foreign cinema, an amazing library, cultural evenings (where you can drink wine and have cheese and call it ‘work’), special events and loads more. Definitely worth every penny, if you’re near one!
6. Book a ticket somewhere exotic: Or perhaps not that exotic, but in your chosen country. Get an ISIC cardand you can get cheaper discounts - by train, carshare or flight, you can make your last week of hols just that little bit better, by booking some time abroad. And what with it being that time of year again (January sales), don’t forget airlines have ‘em too, so get checking!