Determine the best way to communicate and do this well in advance of the trip
Students who have access to computers and free or low-fee or program-affiliated WiFi networks may want to arrange calls home at predesignated times via Skype, Google Voice, MSN Messenger, or others. Smart phones can also help you to communicate, but international plans can be costly. The best way to keep costs down is to arrange for an international plan that places limits on voice and text messaging. And, its important for the student to turn off the data plan when travelling overseas or you'll be hit hard with the bill. Do your research and find out how other families organized their communications strategies when their kids travelled abroad. Whatever you do, plan ahead and evaluate your options. Do not go overboard and select mid-range plans that will allow for some contact but won't break the bank. Make your decisions and get your plans in place well in advance of departure.