Okay disclaimer: I love snapchat I do not have a problem with it, but here is an opinion piece on why its time for people to start looking up from their phones during their time abroad.
I always try to imagine my parents studying abroad in college. I always picture my mom walking in the Louvre in Paris, seeing the Mona Lisa and simply taking a mental picture of the painting. My things have changed. Snapchat is a great way to keep in touch with friends, family and see what everyone is up to. There comes a point when someone is snap chatting everything they do and its just down right ridiculous. Snapchat now has a filter for almost every location and sometimes I start to think: Are people really enjoying the tower of pisa? Or are they just excited to get a new filter to add to their story? I really think my generation is getting too dependent on snapchat and having to document their every move to feel accomplished. What happened to the old days of just having a mental picture and enjoying the view? I am guilty of snap chatting when I honestly should just enjoy the moment.
To study abroad is an amazing experience and not everyone is able to travel across the pond for a semester. I am here all the way in Barcelona! I sometimes still can not believe that I am studying abroad in such a beautiful city. I have had dinners in Barcelona where the main activity is snapchat and Instagram and the dinner was almost dead silent because everyone was on their phone. This should not be the case! Studying abroad is about meeting people and making friends with people you thought you could never make friends with. Studying abroad is about embracing the different culture and observing your settings around you. I am not saying snapchat is evil-but your face should not be stuck in your phone. I sometimes feel as if my friends only care about what other people are doing rather than themselves.
Although on occasion I think Snapchat can be useful for traveling. If you see a beautiful city please capture it on video. To me snapchat is not a memory, its merely few seconds with a countdown and then it is gone forever. No one gains anything by doing this and nothing is learned. To me it is lost time that could of been used for deep conversations and genuine human connection.
I am going to blink and soon my semester abroad in Barcelona will be over. I do not want my memories to be staring at a phone-I want real memories that will be kept safely in my mind forever.
If you are reading this I challenge you to delete your snapchat for a week if you are also studying abroad. I can promise you that you will discover so many more friendships and see so many more beautiful sites without this app.