How do you even begin to think about packing for studying abroad? If I knew this answer before I hopped on that plane to France, life would’ve been a whole lot easier. But hey, let’s all learn from my mistakes! Before you even start deciding how many shirts you’re going to bring, think about the following things:
1. Number of outfits
You want to pack about 2-3 weeks worth of outfits. Your outfits should also be interchangeable (wow that’s a big $5 word) so that you’re not wearing the exact same outfit every 2-3 weeks. But, yes, you will be wearing the same clothes a lot.
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2. Capsule Wardrobe
Consider creating a capsule wardrobe. I’m not an expert on this (but Pinterest is!), but I tried to create something like a capsule wardrobe when I studied abroad and it really helped! Basically, you have a bunch of neutrals and basic pieces that all match so that you can have lots of different outfits without having lots of different clothes.
Don’t forget to think about the weather! If you’re somewhere hot, you probably won’t have a lot of pants or jackets and if you’re somewhere cold you probably won’t have a lot of shorts or tanks. If the seasons are going to change majorly while you’re there, you will want to be prepared for that too! No one wants to be wearing a sweater when it’s 80 outside!
Also, think about what activities you’ll be doing. Will you be laying out on the beach every day? Hiking up a mountain? Skiing or snowboarding? Walking in the rain every day? Once you figure that out, be sure to bring the right clothes!
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It’s always a good idea to be respectful of the culture you will be living in. Do a little research (I promise, it won’t kill you) and plan your packing list off of that. It’s always better to err on the side of caution.
5. Blend in
And don’t forget to look at what’s the cool or normal fashion in your soon to be home. As you all know, I studied abroad in France and in France, everyone wears very little colors and basic but super chic outfits. So that hot pink shirt you love will make you stand out, majorly! The French also have an obsession with scarves so I always wore a scarf while I was there.
Want more study abroad adventures? Follow me on Instagram and use #TheStudyAbroadWorld to share your own!