Right, it’s time for you to pack your whole life into a luggage or two and start your new journey. But the question is how to pack for study abroad wisely?
You have gone through all the difficult steps towards studying abroad, from motivation essay to interview and visa. Now trust me, it’s the fun part, but really important though.
So what do you pack and do what you leave behind? The weight allowed is limited and you want to make sure you don’t forget and regret anything.
Normally, you will be allowed to bring 1 checked baggage, 1 carried on and 1 backpack. I know some airlines might allow more, but let’s just assume that.
Here is the ultimate guide on how to pack for study abroad for you.
What to pack
1. Checked baggage
Big and heavy clothes (Jackets, hoodies, sweatpants, jeans…)
Often, it is allowed to weigh from 30kg to 40kg depending on the airline, so I always put the big and heavy clothes there. That’s just common sense. Remember to fold, roll or press, do whatever it takes to take as little space as possible
This will be a big towel, like a shower towel. It’s quite heavy so yes, stuff it right in there.
Shoes (stuff some socks inside)
I always pack about 3 pair of shoes. 1 pair for daily use, like the most comfortable one. 1 pair of running shoes, to do sports (if you don’t do sports, you should start doing it). And 1 pair for special occasion, like the one that look so good you might kill whoever stepping on it.
Yeah, you definitely should pack swimsuit. Unless you despise swimming or going to the beach.
Is this like an Asian thing? All of my Asian friends always brought Chinese medicine with them. You’ll never know when you need it, but for sure you will. Going to a new country with different weather will make you sick easily and going to the hospital before you settle down is not a good idea.
Trust me, you will definitely need this.
This will make you feel comfortable the moment you move into your new place.
- Cold weather gear (mitten, scarf,…)
Yeah you might wanna write down your experience, thoughts and impression. Beside, you will make lots of beautiful memories there so make sure you save them.
Spice, snacks and food from home
For the first few days when you don’t know where to cook, eat or do grocery. Also, for those days when you miss home.
If you still have more kg, big bottles of shampoo, shower gel and deodorant,…
I know people say these are not necessary because you will buy them there. But if you still have extra kg, I think you should because it will save you all the confusion of which product to use and it might save you money too.
2. Carried on baggage
This is the baggage that you will have to carry with you to the airplane along with your backpack. And it’s often allowed 7 to 12kg depending on the airline
I always put things that are handy and small here because I don’t wanna carry heavy stuff with me.
Toiletries all in one small bag
toothbrush, toothpaste, comb, razors, nail clippers, small bottles of shampoo, deodorant,… I always put all those small things in a toiletries bag so I won’t lose them.
Unless your flight is a long one that is either overnight or lasts ages and you need to use your toothbrush, just keep this bag in the carried-on baggage, or else, put it in your backpack
Small clothes items
light T-shirts, skirts, dresses, shorts,…
Like I said, it shouldn’t be too heavy so I would put light clothes in.
You’ve gotta do some research to see which adapter to use in the destination country. But I would say just buy an international adapter which has every kind of adapter in one.
Laptop and chargers
People often put their laptop in the backpack, which will make it twice as much heavier to carry. I always leave it in the carried on baggage so I can just drag it instead.
- Underwears (2 week worth)
If you are a female, don’t forget this. It’s always better to be prepared while you settle down in the new country full of new and foreign products. Especially if you’re traveling to a non English speaking country.
This is the one bag that you will have to put under your seat inside the plane. I would put the most essential items here, items that I will need to all the time during my travel like passport, phone and phone charger
But trust me, you don’t want this bag to be heavy at all. Nothing is worse than carrying a heavy bag walking around the airport with 2 other luggage.
Maybe you need to bring a copy of your Letter of Acceptance or something like that to show at the border control. Keep those documents ready in your backpack so it’s easiest to reach.
Passport and Boarding pass
Wallet (Money, ID Card, Credit Card)
A book to read on the plane (unless you have Kindle)
I always bring a book to read on the plane or at the airport, just to kill time.
What not to pack
No you don’t need it. Or at least it’s not urgently necessary on first few days of arrival. They just make your luggage heavier and harder to pack.
Hair dryer and curling iron
For people who are going where the voltage is different, leave these items home. I know you wanna look good but even if you use the voltage converter, they will still fry. The best is to buy new ones once you get there.
- Brand new clothes
What I mean is, don’t go buy a bunch of new outfits to prepare for your new journey. I always recommend people to bring clothes that they are comfortable with.
Trust me, once you get there, there will be lots more options for you to choose. Or if you still wanna buy new clothes, make sure you completely feel comfortable on those.
Too many sentimental items
Bring a few gifts from your friends in case you miss home. But from my personal experience, I never use them. They always end up dusted in the corner of my bookshelf.
So don’t pack too many sentimental items, leave them at home.
Just don’t pack these please, your dorm will take care of this. You will be fine