The Ultimate Study Abroad Packing Guide for Adventurous Students

What to Pack for an Unforgettable Adventure

Are you ready for your study abroad adventure? Visas, check. Language skills sharpened, check. You’re just one step away from embracing your new “home away from home.” We’ve made a study abroad packing guide to help make the process a breeze, from the essentials to the must-have items you’ll need. Consider this your go-to resource to set you up for success no matter where you study abroad.

Now, it’s time to conquer the exciting task of packing for your study abroad adventure!

What to pack: the basics 

Traveling can be a total whirlwind, and it’s easy to forget those must-have clothing pieces. That’s where the power of making a list comes in! Staying organized and ticking off those items will not only keep you on top of your game but also give you an awesome feeling of accomplishment. Let’s conquer this packing challenge!

Here’s a list of study abroad packing guide essentials: 

  • Tops (Sweaters, T-Shirts, formal shirts) 
  • Bottoms (Dresses, skirts, jeans, trousers, shorts) 
  • Intimates 
  • Pajamas 
  • Shoes (Walking shoes, slippers, sandals, dress shoes) 
  • Toiletries (Your favorite shampoo, deodorant, make-up) 

Now, it’s time to curate the items you want to take. Keep in mind space and weight (we’ll give you some packing tips later). 

Note: You’ll have access to laundry facilities in your accommodation or at a laundromat. 

Europeans tend to re-wear items more than Americans do. Use your discretion on if your clothes need washing. But sometimes, re-wearing the same sweater twice is more convenient than washing, plus it’s eco-friendly

Outfit repeating is chic and a great way to make the most of your limited suitcase space. This rule applies to most things except for your intimates! In this case, you should count on bringing enough for two weeks in case you can’t get your laundry done. 

Discover a new style 

Italy is one of the fashion capitals of the world and one of the best places to study fashion. That doesn’t mean you have to be catwalk ready every day of the week.

When it comes to fashion in Italy, things can be more formal compared to your average American style. While it’s great immersing yourself in the local vibes, feel free to rock your own unique look. The most important thing is to have fun and embrace your new culture! 

Changing for the Season

Packing for the weather is crucial to your comfort. You may not want to be in a wool sweater when it’s 95 degrees out. Also, don’t forget you might be traveling to other places around Italy and Europe with vastly different climates. 

For example; your day might start in the heat of Venice and finish in the cool mountain air of Bolzano. Keep these changes in weather in mind when creating your packing list. 

Pro tip: Layer! It’s one of the best tools to make sure extreme changes in weather conditions don’t ruin your time abroad. 

Other items to include on your packing list depending on the season: 

  • Fleece or down vests 
  • Cardigans 
  • Light-, Medium-, and Heavy-weight sweaters 

These are just a few items to ensure you’re ready to battle the elements and stay comfortable. 

Best Packing Techniques 

Now, it’s time to fit it all into your suitcase. Most major airlines allow you to have one checked bag (50 pounds) one small carry-on, and one backpack/purse. Be sure to check your airline company’s regulations before you start packing. 

Everyone has their favorite methods of packing, from using packing cubes to rolling. Most travel experts and bloggers agree the roll-up method along with folding is best. This method saves space and keeps your clothes neat and stackable. No more digging through a messy suitcase. Of course, you can buy vacuum bags or packing cubes. But, you won’t believe how much room you can save by rolling up some of your clothes instead of just folding them. It’s like unlocking a hidden superpower that gives you more space for the stuff that matters.

What happens if something doesn’t fit in my suitcase? 

It’s time to make some tough choices. Packing means making sacrifices. If your bag is bursting at the seams or that must-have item won’t squeeze in, it’s better to leave it behind. Let’s be real, you’re probably not jetting off to study abroad in the middle of the Sahara desert. There will be shops wherever you go. You can grab the essentials or discover new favorites. So, don’t stress! Embrace the adventure. Let go of what doesn’t fit, and explore new horizons with an open mind and a lighter suitcase!

SRISA Pro Tip: Once you’re done packing, it’s time for the ultimate test: the weight check! Grab all your luggage, carry it across the room, and see how you feel. If you can handle it with ease, you’re ready! If you’re huffin’ and puffin’ like a marathon runner, consider shaving off a few items. You’re the boss of your luggage transportation, so keep it manageable.

With our study abroad packing guide and your creativity, you’ll stay organized and slay your study abroad journey with confidence and style!

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