Packing Info

You're now going abroad, and although you want to take your entire life with you, you won't have room to. Leave some space to bring back your experiences! 

General Tips

  • Pack light and be aware of the local weather and pack accordingly.
  • Take clothes that can be layered and combined. Consider taking clothes that you can leave behind in case you need to free up space in your bag. Make sure that clothing is culturally accepted in your destination(s). Pack clothing for all occassions. 
  • Consider taking an empty duffle or backpack.
  • Keep copies of your passport and visa pages in several locations.
  • Keep a list of ALL documents you take with you including their numbers.
  • Be aware of the Customs regulations in your host country as well as in the U.S.
  • Put your name and phone number on the INSIDE and OUTSIDE of all your luggage. Also make sure it's easily identifiable (color ribbon or tag).
  • Bring copies of ALL prescriptions in generic form, including glasses, contacts, and medications. 
  • Bring prescription medication in their original containers and generic form- bring enough to last for your stay if possible. Check whether you will be able to get over a months worth prescription. Also, check the amount of prescription medication you can bring into your country without requiring a doctor's note. 
  • If you are staying with a host family, it's a good idea to bring a small gift as a token of appreciation, such as a souvenir from your home country, state, or university. 
  • Research checked bag fees for your airline.
  • Divide what you are taking into two bags, in case one piece gets lost, if you are taking more than one piece of luggage.

Carry-On Luggage

  • NO sharp metal objects!
  • Put ALL your official documents and medication in your handbag or carry-on.
  • Pack a change of clothing and toiletry essentials in case of delayed flight of checked luggage.
  • Click here for information on maximum weight and size of carry-on for different websites.
  • For detailed information of what you can and can't carry-on, visit the TSA website.

Items to Bring 

Below are some suggested items to pack. Depending on your destination and your program's activities, you may not need some items listed. Cick here for a pdf version of the file. 

  • Clothing

    • Dressy jacket
    • Shirts/blouses/tops
    • Trousers/skirts/shorts
    • Swimsuit and coverup
    • Sweater or cardigan
    • Rainwear (umbrella, jacket, boots)
    • Jacket or coat
    • Socks
    • Undergarments
    • Long underwear
    • Scarf, hairband, bandanna
    • Gloves or mittens
    • Sun hat or visor
    • Dressy shoes
    • Walking shoes/boots
    • Flip-flops, sandals, slippers
    • Belt
  • Bags/Luggage

    • Medium-sized shoulder bag
    • Small bag/purse
    • Lightweight duffel bag/laundry bag
    • Luggage locks (TSA-approved)
    • Ziploc bags
    • Trash bags
  • Cleaning/ Laundry Supplies

    • Sink stopper
    • Detergent/spot remover
    • Clothesline
    • Inflatable hangers (to dry clothes) 
  • Hygiene/Health

    • Toilet paper, antibacterial wipes
    • Water purifier
    • Pain reliever, diarrhea treatment, infection treatment
    • Insect repellent, mosquito net
    • Sunscreen, lip balm
    • Bandages
    • Menstrual supplies
    • Contraceptives and prophylactics
    • Vitamins, medications
    • Collapsible water bottle/cup 
    • Glasses, sunglasses, contact lenses/solution
    • Earplugs, eye mask (for sleeping
  • Toiletries

    • Toothbrush, toothpaste, floss
    • Razor, blades, shaving cream/oil
    • Comb, hairbrush
    • Shampoo, conditioner
    • Soap/body wash
    • Deodorant
    • Nail clippers
    • Plastic mirror
    • Washcloth/towel
    • Hair dryer
  • Documents

    • Passports, visas
    • Vaccination certificates
    • Health insurance card
    • Travel tickets
    • ATM & credit cards
    • Prescription & doctor’s note
    • Copies of all important documents 
  • Electronics

    • Plug/power cord adapters
    • Cell phone, charger
    • Laptop/tablet, charger
    • Alarm clock
    • Batteries
    • Camera 
  • Miscellaneous

    • Pens, pencils, small notebook
    • Maps, guidebooks, phrasebooks
    • Books/reading material
    • Scissors
    • Spoon, fork, spork, chopsticks, plate/bowl
    • Compass, whistle
    • Travel pillow (inflatable)
    • Hostel sheet bag/sleeping bag
    • Safety pins, rubber bands, cord
    • Sewing kit
    • Duct tape