“Beautiful, beautiful Barbados, a gem of the Caribbean Sea”. This famous lyric coined by the popular local calypso band, The Merry Men, rings true to the unique charm and majesty of the island. Golden suns, calming waves, and the clever Green Monkey! Who wouldn’t want to study here?
Due to the difficult admission process of some North American or European universities, students may have a better chance of admission in the Caribbean, but some won’t apply because they believe that the universities are substandard. But a change is happening. Every year hundreds of international students travel to Barbados for their university education. Education is important to the island. Students enrolled in any of the island’s educational institutions go through rigorous curricula which have resulted in a 97% literacy rate; one of the highest in the world.
Also, consider that studying in the Caribbean is significantly less expensive than studying in North America or in some cases in Europe. This includes tuition, books, and accommodation. Students are encouraged to live on campus if possible, however, if space is not available students can rent apartments within a two-mile radius or in an area with a good bus route. On some campuses, transportation is available for students and will pick-up and will drop them at assigned stops.
It is important to state that Barbados’ currency is tied to the United States dollar and the U.S currency is accepted here, as well as most major countries. Conducting bank transactions are also done with very little stress, and parents can wire money to students. The exchange is $1 US = $1.98 BDS. See an example of the exchange rates below.


Most international students are leaving home for the first time and consider their study abroad an adventure. However, along with their journey they may become homesick or feel alone. Barbadians or Bajans are very amiable and giving. They love to make visitors feel at home, ergo, they host many social events. Students can attend these events to make new friends and experience a touch of local culture. For instance, if students are on the island from June to August, they can take part in the biggest celebration of the year. The Crop Over Festival! As the name indicates, the celebration was initially held as a party for the slaves after the sugarcane crops were harvested. There are numerous events during the festival such as Bridgetown Market, where local delicacies and crafts are sold and the sweet melodies of steelpan at Pan on the Sand.
Kadooment Day is carnival day on the island and is a holiday and therefore, businesses are closed. Thousands of Bajans and visitors, in their array of colorful costumes, parade or “jump” from the National Stadium to Spring Garden Highway where the party continues. And if you’re lucky, you might see international recording artist, Rihanna, and many other celebrities. There are also other festivals that capture other areas of Barbadian culture, such as: The Holetown Festival and the Oistins Fish Festival. For more information, please visit https://barbados.org or https://www.visitbarbados.org.
There are plenty of hangout spots or as the locals like to call it, “liming” spots. Oistins Bay Gardens, Mullins Beach, Boat Yard, among others. Do you know how to play dominoes? Play with the best at the local shop and hear some great stories too!
The crime rate in Barbados is considerably low compared to neighboring islands. Students are advised to exercise normal precautions and let common sense prevail while off campus. While on campus, however, all universities have security officers and surveillance equipment on the compounds.

Students should be made aware of a few laws of the island. For instance:
· Dressing or carrying items made with camouflage pattern is illegal.
· It is illegal to sunbathe topless on any of the beaches.
· Possession or usage of marijuana, cocaine, heroin, etc is illegal.
· Prostitution is prohibited.
· And motorists drive on the left side.
· Wearing a seat belt is mandatory. Failing to do so will result in a fine.
· It is not a law but more of a caution but do NOT touch the manchineel fruit found on some beaches. They are slightly poisonous and may cause skin irritation.

Barbados is a wondrous place with unimaginable sunsets and beautiful, intelligent people to share it with. It truly has it all. Beauty and brains.