Pack for Study Abroad in Europe

What American Students Should Pack for a Semester Abroad

Packing for your semester abroad

When facing the question, "how do I fit everything!?", we always try to keep in mind that Europeans still use hairdryers and tooth brushes. In fact, they have hair dryers with European double prong plugs! Once you're less stressed about trying to remember everything you might need, that's when the fun begins. An extra bonus? Remember that when both academic semesters start (Spring and Fall), this time of the year usually corresponds to some great sale seasons throughout Europe (either post-Christmas or end of summer sales). Consider packing half the clothes you think you'll need, and use that as an excuse to pick up some sweet European styles. To the left is what I packed for one semester in Europe.

The Basics

  • Passport
  • Perscriptions (often can get vacation supply)
  • Student ID
  • Backpack or Cross-body bag
  • Weekend size bag - to fit carry on luggage requirements
  • Vitamins
  • School supplies
  • Flash drive
  • Sunglasses
  • Purse - zipper and cross body are a good idea
  • Toiletries - keep in mind carry on requirements
  • Electronics - camera, lap top, power cords, headphones

Clothes

  • A few pairs of pants
  • Lounge clothes - to be worn around the apartment
  • Pajamas
  • Socks/underwear - enough for two weeks
  • Swimsuit
  • Workout clothes - one outfit
  • Light, water resistant jacket
  • Heavy, wool jacket
  • Going out clothes - a few tops and bottoms that can be mixed and matched
  • Accessories, gloves, scarves - make any outfit look like new!

Book Now!Shoes

  • Tennis Shoes
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • For girls - flat boots and pair of dressy wedges - it's impossible to walk on European cobblestones in heels!
  • Flip flops - for hostel showers
  • Warm weather sandals - for those few sunny days

Don't Forget!

Things to remember that they don't have in Europe (or they're exceedingly hard to find):

  • Peanut butter
  • Electrical adapters
  • Solo cups
  • Your specific hair gel (for dudes)
  • Good Orbitz gum

Blend in!

See if you can blend into the local crowd. These brands and styles mark you as an American right away (think about leaving them at home!):

  • North Face fleeces
  • Sweat pants and sweatshirts with your college name or logo on them (although I like bringing a pair for lounging in the room)
  • Wearing running shoes with jeans (consider a more casual tennis shoe instead)
  • Cargo shorts
  • Wearing white socks with non-running shoes
  • Baseball hats

Packing for your weekend trips

When packing for a weekend trip and using a budget airline, be sure to make your outfit selections before you get on the plane. Remember how long you'll actually be in the city. One pair of almost everything works. If you plan on hitting some swanky nightlife, be sure to bring a change of outfits to set you up for success at the door. For guys, that means bring those dress shoes, a button up and a dark pair of jeans! Layering is always a good idea, with a light jacket for rain. I sound like my dear mother when I say this, but wool socks in October through March keep those feet dry and warm.

_Which_ US schools are the best?

by livn_prosper

No question that some US post secondary institutions are top notch. Though, I wonder how many of the professors or top graduate students are American born.
But, at the other levels our education system lags those of Europe and Japan, and possibly China.
One high school principal I met from Virginia said that he spent 50% of his time on disciplinary matters. Upon switching to the international teaching circuit, and teaching in Budapest, that number declined to zero.
We have a few geniuses here. But, we also have large numbers of people who are borderline illiterate and innumerate

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FAQ

autumn
What to pack for studying abroad in Europe?

I'm studying abroad in Italy this summer, living in Rome, and will be traveling to various European countries. I'm unsure of what clothes to pack. We're told to try to narrow it down to one suitcase....what kind of clothes/shoes would be appropriate for Italy through the months of May- June?

I've heard that in Italy in May it is warm, but not too hot. And it gets hotter as you move into June. The average high in May is 71 degrees F and the average low is 51. In June, the high is averaged at 77, and the low at 61. There are also 8 rainy days in May, and 9 in June, so you might want to pack an umbrella and/or rain boots. (:

As for what to pack....I haven't been to Italy, but I was in England and France in June last year. I packed a lot of shorts and bermudas and only two pairs of pants. I only wore the pants on one day, and it was actually for half a day…

Jessica Lund
What to pack for Europe- Study Abroad?

I'm studying abroad in Copenhagen in May for 6 weeks (I'll be done July 7th) and then I'm traveling around Europe for another 2 weeks (Vienna, Rome, Paris). I have a 34L Deuter pack and I was wondering if I would be able to fit all my stuff in that for the 8 weeks. Or should I pack a suitcase too and just ship it home when I head out traveling. Also, what would you suggest I bring clothes wise. I've been over to Europe before but it was in Southern Europe and in the middle of the summer. So far I have a few quick-drying clothes (shorts, shirt, and jacket). If at all possible, i would…

I think you will be able to fit everything in what you have. If you bring a suitcase and ship it home it will very expensive. Bring enough clothes for a week at most, usually something like 4-5 shirts, 2 shorts, 1 pants, 1 jacket, 7 underwear, 7 socks etc. remember to count the clothes that you are wearing. I'm sure where ever you are staying there will be a laundry machines there or in the area. I have traveled the world for almost a year with little less than this. For entertainment I would only bring an iPod, laptop, and phone that's it no books (they take up room and are too heavy,…

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