Blog Student stories Celebrating Eid al-Fitr abroad as an international student 
A student and Eid Al-Fitr decorationsA student and Eid Al-Fitr decorations

Celebrating Eid al-Fitr abroad as an international student 

My name is Hania El-Shalkany and I’m from Egypt, studying at the University of Nottingham International College.

As an international student, one of the most significant obstacles can be celebrating Eid al-Fitr away from home. It can be both challenging and rewarding. My personal experience celebrating Eid away from home has been a mix of nostalgia, adaptation, and creating new fun traditions.  

What Eid al-Fitr means to me

Marking the end of Ramadan, a month of fasting and spiritual reflection, Eid is a time of joy, family gatherings, delicious food, and spiritual renewal. It’s an opportunity to gather with your family and take in the unique sounds and smells of your home country.   

However, when studying abroad, it’s also a chance to connect with other international students, share our traditions, and create a sense of community far from home.  

I remember my first Eid away, feeling a mix of homesickness and excitement. I reached out to other Muslim students, and together we organised a small Eid gathering on campus. We cooked traditional dishes, prayed together, and shared stories of our own Eid experiences back home. It was a heartwarming celebration that made me feel connected despite the distance. 

For those new to celebrating Eid away from home, here are some tips to enjoy Eid. 

Connect with other Muslim students 

Find comfort in the company of fellow Muslim students on your campus or in your community. Celebrating Eid together can foster a sense of belonging and provide much-needed support. 

Explore local resources 

Look for local mosques, cultural centres, or student organisations hosting Eid events or prayers. These community celebrations can help you stay connected to your traditions. 

Share your traditions 

Be open to sharing your Eid traditions with your friends and classmates. It’s an excellent opportunity to enlighten others about your culture and form meaningful connections with students from around the world.

Plan ahead 

If you can’t travel home for Eid, plan your celebrations in advance. Cook traditional meals, decorate your living space, and carve out time for prayers and reflection to make the day special. 

Turkish Tea with Turkish delights
Embrace the experience 

While Eid celebrations away from home may feel different, it’s crucial to embrace the opportunity to form new traditions, learn from others, and appreciate the spectrum of experiences that come with being an international student. 

More than anything, it’s a chance to connect with others, share your culture, and create memories, despite being miles away from home. After all, Eid is a celebration of community, faith, and unity, no matter where you are in the world.

Latern and Dates for Eid
Study abroad with Kaplan

If you would like to embark on a study abroad journey like Hania, then Kaplan is here to help. We provide all the support you need when applying to your chosen university, such as reviewing your application and giving you support with any required documents.  

To learn more, please get in touch with us and a friendly Education Advisor will be happy to answer any questions you may have.  

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