international love
For many studying abroad has given them the opportunity to find love. Source: Inti Ocon/AFP

International love has been romanticised in movies and books for many years, from X-Men’s Wolverine and Storm to Marvel’s Wanda’s Maximoff and Vision.

But is this fairy tale as common in the real world?

Every year, millions of students leave home for the opportunity to study abroad. It’s an exciting time. For many, it’s also the first time being away from home.

And for a very lucky few, this was also a time where they met the love of their lives. 

According to a study done by the UK’s top student accommodation, UniHomes, it was found that almost a third of university students find their soulmates while at university. 

Here are four international love stories that will melt your cold hearts:

international love

They met at university, beat the odds and show us international love can do bridge the greatest distance. Source: Bryan Bedder/AFP

Kate and Javi 

Distance stood no chance for this perfect pair. Kate and Javi’s international love is so strong and captivating that it was featured on the Erasmus Generation Blog.

In 2014, Kate travelled to Gandia for a semester at the Technical University. Though only there for a short time, it completely changed her life.

While there, she met her now husband, Javi, from the Canary Islands. They exchanged contacts, and the connection was instant. The two are so meant to be they even share the same birthday. 

From romantic dinners to trips, they spent the rest of Kate’s Erasmus time together. Desperate to spend more time together, Kate extended her scholarship for one more semester. 

Unfortunately, time flew by, and soon Kate had to return to Georgia. Despite trying to secure internships, Kate could not return to Spain. With no hope of reuniting, they ended their relationship at the beginning of 2016.

But, of course, these soulmates found their way back to each other. In May 2016, they reunited in Istanbul after a year of not seeing each other.

Determined not to be separated again, they decided to get married. Today, Kate spends every day waking up next to Javi. 

Eduardo Maldonado Cruz and Paulina Gallegos

Thanks to The University of Texas at Austin’s Academic English Programme, Eduardo Maldonado Cruz and Paulina Gallegos found their soulmates.

In 2018 they both received grants from the US-Mexico Commission for Educational and Cultural Exchange (COMEXUS). 

After just five minutes of talking, Paulina knew she wanted Eduardo in her life. The two started talking more, and the rest was history.

They spent almost every day together, going to the rooftop to talk about their dreams, families and goals and even took a trip together. 

However, not long after, Paulina had to return to Mexico City while Eduardo stayed on to start his PhD programme at the university. 

Determined to stay together, she began applying for graduate schools and was accepted for a master’s in Interior Design programme for fall 2019.

During their time apart, they spent their time talking and visiting each other as much as possible. On one trip in Nov. 2018, Eduardo took Paulina to a park where he proposed to her.

Just five months later, they were married and living in the same city together again. 

international love

For international love, patience is a required virtue. Source: Ahmad Gharabli/AFP

Armelle and David 

Sharing their story with the British Council, Armell and David fell in love during her Erasmus placement at St Mary’s University College, Belfast

Armelle is originally from Norway and France, while David is from Northern Ireland and worked near her university. They bumped into each other at a pub nearby and soon after had their first date. 

While things were going well, she shared that they did have their challenges – especially when it came to food. Though their food preferences differed, the two were completely in love.

As her bachelor’s programme came to an end and she would have to leave Belfast, Armelle began to worry about how their relationship would work. But David reassured her.

Sticking together through it all, they moved to Dublin soon after, where Armelle completed her master’s degree.

Then, they stayed in Norway for two years, before returning to Dublin, where they decided to settle down and get married. 

Yesmina Jallouli and Ahmed Ben Dhaou

In 2012, it wasn’t love that tore student couples apart, but immigration law.

This was when the UK government increased the average salary requirements for a British person bringing a non-EU spouse into the UK to 18,600 pounds, as reported by The Guardian.

Among the couples separated were Yesmina Jallouli and Ahmed Ben Dhaou.

During that time, Yesmina was a first-year international business student at Manchester Metropolitan University, while her husband was stuck in Tunisia.

They had earlier met in Tunisia while she was taking a gap year and gotten married shortly after.

As difficult as it was, they saved all their money to be able to visit each other as much as possible while apart. 

“I could only handle three weeks here, and I had to book to go to Tunisia to go and see Ahmed,” Yesmina told The Guardian.

“I cry when I see him at the airport, cry in his arms thinking about leaving, and cry at our last cuddle at the airport before I walk through the doors of hell, knowing I won’t see him for however long.”