Packing Abroad 101

Packed bags

Okay, just to warn you, I am an overpacker. I can’t help it! I always want to make sure I have an abundance of clothing and shoes because you never know what you’ll need until you’re at your destination, and plus, weather changes every second. However, this is must my excuse to pack three bags.

Since my cousin has already studied abroad, she helped me narrow down things that I actually needed. I referred to these packing list that we found on Pinterest as a basis.


Here are some of the things I packed in each bag to give you a sense of what’s actually important to bring and what you can leave at home.

Large Purse (I suggest getting a Long Champ bag)

  • Wallet (Make sure to pull out cash so you can exchange it for the correct currency of where you’re going) (Be sure to get an international credit card to avoid exchange rates and to pull out cash)
  • Passport + ID
  • Boarding Pass
  • Empty water bottle
  • A key chain (I left my car key and house key at home, but when I arrive at my University I will be given another pair of keys, so just keep that in mind)
  • Neck pillow (This was a lifesaver on long flights!)
  • Beats + Apple ear phones (In case you want to watch a movie on the plane)
  • A good book
  • Documents: (You’ll need these if you’re getting a student VISA: 1) Travel insurance (both before the semester starts + the paperwork from your University regarding insurance) 2) Letter from the University you’re studying at abroad 3) Letter from the University that you go to in America 4) Vaccine documents 5) Financial statement / Bank statement
  • A notebook and pen (On planes I like to doodle, write poetry, or just discuss how I feel in the form of words) (This is a great time to write down what you’re feeling and what you think your trip will be like so you can look at it after you finish your adventure)
  • A bag of food (Trail mix, bars, chocolate, packets of tea etc.)
  • Laptop + laptop charger
  • A portable charger
  • Small camera
  • Plug / Adapter converter
  • U.S. Presidents flash cards / Flags flash cards
  • A desk of cards
  • Sunglasses in a case
  • A change of clothes (Shorts, T-shirt, socks and underwear)
  • Sleep mask
  • Hair ties / Hair clip
  • Toiletries in a clear bag (Clear bag for taking out when going through security) (Includes: deodorant, face wash, tooth brush, tooth paste, mouth wash, headband, tissues, medicine, face moisturizer, lotion, and floss)

*** You will need to take our your laptop from the case, your portable charger depending on the size of it, your toiletry bag, and your bag of food when going through security

Carry On BagĀ 

I used this bag to put things that are heavier in so my checked suitcase would weight less. Also, this is a good bag to put delicate items in!

  • Books / Notebooks / Pens
  • Shoes: Heels & Flipflops
  • Hats
  • Jewelry bag (Includes: watches, rings, extra belly button rings, necklaces, earrings, and bracelets)
  • Small travel toiletry bag (Includes: Mini shampoo + conditioner, floss, pads / tampons, makeup recover, razor, tooth brush + toothpaste, roller-ball perfume, hair ties, deodorant, q-tips, headbands, face wash, lotion for body + face lotion)
  • Sweatpants
  • Stuffed animal
  • Hair curlers
  • Belts
  • Makeup
  • Maps
  • Brush
  • Money belt


Packing cubes are lifesavers and help keep you organized! Get these before packing your bag. You can buy them off of amazon.

  • Front pocket of my bag
    • Underwear (x15)
  • Clear, mesh zipper inside pockets
    • Bras (Regular, bandos, bralettes, sports bras) (x7)
    • Socks (x 10) (7 for working out, 3 cute pairs)
    • Swim suits (x 4)
    • Scarfs (x 2)
    • Post shower head wrap
  • Large packing cube (Included: x 3 leggings, x 5 shorts, x 5 t-shirts)
  • Medium packing cube (Included: x 5 dressy tops, x 3 plain shirts,
  • Small packing cube (Included: x 5 workout tank tops, x 4 crop tops)
  • Small packing cube (Included: snacks, another plug / adapter converter, Biotin, Advil, Neosporin, Vitamin C, B12, gum, tweezer)
  • Clear bag: (Included: makeup remover, razor + extra blades, q-tips, nail polish, nail file, nail polish remover, coconut oil, deodorant, lotion, dry shampoo, It’s a 10 leave in spray, curly hair creme)
  • In the rest of my bag I rolled my other clothes (x 4 jeans, x 3 shorts, x 3 short skirts, x 2 long skirts, x 4 dresses, flannel, x 5 dressy tank tops)
  • Shoes (Included: flipflops, little black booties, converse)
  • Other: eye mask, umbrella, second copy of documents, trash bag for dirty clothes
  • (I’m waiting to get my big winter jackets and shoes until I arrive in London to save room and keep the weight of my bag lower)

***Reminder !!! Your bag must weight less than 50 lbs. or you will be charged more!

****Leave dryer sheets in your bag to make your clothes smell good

Outfit On The Plane

  • Tennis shoes + socks
  • Tank top + sports bra
  • Running leggings
  • Lulu jacket + jean jacket
  • Lulu scarf
  • Sometimes a hat