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The Exchange Student Reality Show

This time, your city will be Berlin. You and one other exchange student will be set loose in the city for 3 days and 4 nights, including travel, and are expected to forage for food, see important landmarks, and absorb local culture. Of course, you can receive help from other friends before the trip to find lodging and transportation, but to not make it too easy, you will both have exams on the day of your departure limiting your research time. Also, be sure that your travel plans are not double-booked with your classes, since missing class results in a large point deduction.

Your budget is 100 Euros for transportation and housing, and a maximum of another 100 Euros for food, souvenirs, museum entrance, and other expenses. Extra points awarded for each Euro under budget you return with.

Once in the city, you are only allowed to walk or use public transportation. You also will both receive one free map from your hostel for navigation purposes. To ensure you get enough exercise and don’t become complacent, there will be a strike of tram drivers during part of the duration of your stay.

You are allowed, and even encouraged, to interact with the people around you, especially fellow travelers. In fact, any help you receive during the time period can only come from people that you meet while in your location. Do not hesitate to make use of this unlimited lifeline.

As an added challenge, you will each only have access to one hour of spotty Wi-Fi a day, and will only have access to the camera and one travel app on your phone the rest of the time. It is your responsibility to ensure your devices are fully charged.

Points will be awarded for important landmarks visited, number of foreign words learned, amount of history learned, and level of sanity maintained. Bonus points will be awarded at the discretion of onlookers for items such as cultural sensitivity, healthy food decisions, and seamless transitions between modes of transportation.

Returning without passport, wallet, keys, or phone, or not cooperating with your partner, will result in point deductions, as well as potential disqualification from future episodes.

Your overall success will be judged nightly by friends through social media, and comprehensively in Dining Hall upon your return (“You ate the pistachio macaroons?? Should have gone with the chocolate ones …” “You were in Berlin but you didn’t go inside of the Deutscher Bundestag?”).

Success in this round will unlock future locations. Higher point values may result in a larger budget for next round, perks in future episodes, and a greater chance of success in the next location.

May the trains be ever in your station.

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