So this blog will not only be functioning as my personal journal for the next year, but also as a guide for traveling and suitcase style (I am studying fashion after all). I promise to keep everything honest and detailed, especially for those of you who plan to study abroad in the future.
A Guide to Packing
As a girl who loves lists, organization and shopping, I adore packing for any type of adventure. You can ask my BFF, Jordyn, any time I visit her in Columbus I am promptly instructed to limit my outfit choices to less than five for a single night. Four months of traveling was a challenge that I was eager to take on with my one checked bag and one carry on.
I sold half my closet. I knew I couldn’t fit my walk-in into two bags, so I downsized. I waltzed into Plato’s Closet with two giant suitcases of clothes, shoes and accessories that I rarely wear but hoard, and walked out with an extra $160 in my pocket for Florence.
Know your limits. I luckily have traveled to Europe before so I knew what to expect while packing. Europe is a cramped place with small cars, small rooms, and lots of stairs. So I limited myself to my one free checked bag weighing less than 50 pounds, one carry on (that I made sure can meet European airline restrictions for future travel) and a large tote bag.
Be honest with yourself. If you will only wear it once don’t pack it. Europe has a very neutral palate and is very minimalist in its style. If its bright, leave it at home. If its printed, leave it at home. If its anything that will brand you as an America, such as daisy dukes, crop tops or logo t shirts, leave it at home.
Know what you can buy there. I had the tragic experience of learning that even with a converter, my favorite Chi straighter will not work in Europe. So straighteners, hair dryers, all left behind. Same with anything like shampoo, soap and moisturizers. You can easily buy it there, so save the room in your suitcase. Pack travel-sized ones in a “to-go” bag (details to follow in a later post) to get you through the first day you’re there. However, it’s its something you don’t want to take a chance on, for me it was contact solution, make the exception.