Cultural Experience | Europe

5 Travel Essentials for Multi-Destination Study Abroad

How to Pack When You’re Visiting Multiple Countries

Why study abroad in just one country when you could study abroad in three? From special luggage requirements, to climate changes, packing for a multi-destination trip can prove to be incredibly difficult. So, I came up with a couple of travel essentials for those of you, who like myself, couldn’t choose just one location for the semester.


1.Warm (but thin!) Layers

This is one of the most important things you should keep in mind while you pack. Warm layers that won’t take up an insane amount of room in your luggage will always be helpful when going to a new country. During my study abroad program, I was able to live in Rome, Seville, and Paris for a month each. After living in Seville’s warm and mild winter weather for a month, I was really excited to be able to explore the busy streets and arrondissments of Paris. The sights were breathtaking, but the weather was far more cold and rainy than I had become used to. My body was so unprepared for the drop in temperature that I spent my entire first week in bed having coughing fits. The last thing you want is to get sick when you could be exploring a new place, and being able to have clothing items that are warm, but far less bulky than sweaters would be incredibly helpful.

2. A Luggage Scale

While you’re exploring, it’s likely that you’ll want to pick up souvenirs. Be sure to keep in mind that smaller airlines that operate within Europe are particularly strict about their luggage requirements. A scale can help you avoid that mini crisis where you either have to choose to spend extra at the airport to get your bag on the plane, or are forced to throw things away at the last minute. I witnessed so many of my classmates scramble to throw out some of their favorite things at the last minute, while I knew the exact weight of my bag ahead of time.

3. An Insulated Water Bottle

You never quite know how you’ll get your water until you get to a destination, but in a lot of cases, single bottles will either be costly or hard to find. I spent the first month of my program carrying huge liters of water from my supermarket to my dorm. During my semester abroad, the students who used refillable bottles were able to either purchase liters and refill as needed, or take advantage of a public fountain system. Insulated bottles are even better because they can keep your drinks warm or cold for a longer period of time.

4. A Passport Cover

Packing and repacking can be annoying, but misplacing your passport is nothing short of a nightmare. Save yourself the stress by buying a passport cover or wallet that can hold all off your travel documents to carry around airports. Once you arrive at your destination, leave your passport in a very safe place, with a cover that is a color you find easy to spot when you need it the most. It’s also a really good idea to make at least two photocopies of your passport. I left one at home with my parents, just in case if there was an emergency; and carried the other with my ID whenever I went out.

5. A Fun Way to Document Your Trip

One of the biggest regrets I hear from my classmates is how they wish they did a better job recording the details of their trips. Photos are wonderful, but after a while, it becomes easy to forget the surrounding context of these photos. Keeping a travel journal or scratch map could be a really fun way to document those stories, and ensure that you’ll be able to remember the details of your trip later on.

Another great way to document your trip is by creating an author’s profile right here on College Tourist. Write amazing articles about your travels and share them with other students just like you.

The key to studying abroad in more than one place, is to make sure to keep your bags light, and to spend as much time as possible enjoying each culture. Happy travels!

5 Travel Essentials for multi-destination study abroad.

Carine Alexis

St. John's University | 7 stories

Carine Alexis is a senior at St. John's University, majoring in Communications with a double minor in International Studies and Business. She has loved to travel ever since her first study abroad trip in high school; and has found every way to travel on a college budget, since then. Carine is also an avid reader, crafter, and cream soda enthusiast.

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