Learn about Your Destination
Make the most of your international travel experience by doing some research about the country and people, and about current issues which affect them.
Resources on campus
Saint Mary's prides itself on having a large population of international students. Students at Saint Mary's come from over 80 different countries and are a great resource. Get involved with one of many international student societies and have some fun learning about other cultures. (For a list of societies, see http://smusa.ca/society-list).
Consider purchasing a guide book for travelers. If you do, keep in mind the long timelines for publishing a book. This means that guide books tend to be most useful for information about climate, culture, language, and sights to see. They are less likely to be useful for more time sensitive information like prices, timetables, etc.
The internet has a variety of excellent resources that can teach you about the history and culture of your host country.
Start with reading the Country Report from the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, www.voyage.gc.ca
We also recommend:
Centre for Intercultural Learning
The Big Guide to Living and Working Overseas