Residency Interview Travel Tips

Medical Residency Application & Interview Preparation Specialists

For those who are expecting to travel to some of their interviews, travelling to and from them will likely be weighing on your mind. Whilst this was more of an issue in the past, when all interviews were in-person, it can still be difficult for those who have multiple interviews falling in the 30-40% which are scheduled to be in-person. Here we’ll run through some top tips to make the process as simple as it can be.

Set Your Travel Budget

Ensure that you have a set budget for all of your travel. Make this realistic, yet as low as you can realistically make it. If you’re to make it to multiple in-person interviews then you will likely need to plan ahead and look for cheap and sensible ways of getting to them. Do your utmost to stick to this budget.

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Find Cheap Accommodation

You must try to save money on hotels if you have multiple interviews – they can be very expensive. Therefore, staying with a resident is likely the best option. Take this option if it’s there, as it will save you money and allow you the chance to get to know one of the current residents, and learn more about the program and the city that it is in. If this is not an option, look for a sensible and reasonably priced hotel near the program – you don’t want to be travelling too far to get there, especially in a city that you may not know.

Travel and Eat Cheaply

Try to find the cheapest way to your interview – that could mean a bus or train, for example, rather than a flight. Equally, driving might be a sensible option for many. Use skyscanner / kayak etc to compare deals if you need to fly. Try to pack as much food as you can, or go to shops rather than restaurants where possible.

Keep Your Clothing Neat

This is vital – you must ensure that you look professional during the interviews. Therefore make sure that you have a sensible way of carrying your clothes which keeps them neat and folded. If necessary, iron items again in the hotel before you interview.

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Plan What to Bring

Create a comprehensive list of everything that you will need for the interview day and travelling, and buy this well in advance at good prices. Try to read and review this list each time you set off for a new interview. The list might cover the documents that you need, the suit that you will wear, different items for longer or shorter stays, portable chargers, your folio, toiletries, etc. Whilst this might seem a little much, it’s better to be well-prepared and have a routine that you know will work.

Time Difference

You’ll need to consider the time difference, and even whether different time zones might have an effect on you! In particular, make sure to give yourself realistic amounts of time after you land to get to your hotel, rest, etc. Additionally, make sure that you have considered timings in both time zones, and that your watch, smartphone, etc are all updated to the new time when you land. You don’t want any admin errors or to miss a flight.

Bring Distractions

Bring something that can reliably distract you from the stress of the interview, and of travelling. That might be a book, your airpods, crosswords, Nintendo – whatever it is, be realistic and ensure that you have something that will take your mind off everything when you need to relax.

Split Travel

If you know any other applicants, make sure to split travel with them if possible. Equally, if you realise that other applicants are staying in a similar area of the city to you during the dinner, for example, try to split Ubers with them – it’ll save money and ensure that you get to know others who might be working alongside you in the not-too-distant future!

Get Enough Sleep

It might be difficult, but travelling is already a tiring process – so getting enough sleep will be vital. Think about how you can guarantee yourself some good sleep. This might mean bringing some gym clothes, going on a walk, or meditating – consider what works for you. The last thing you want is to show up at the interview half-awake and looking like you haven’t slept!

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