Whereas clothes, a toothbrush, and your passport are clearly obvious things to pack before you move abroad, there are other items that a lot of people forget. These six items are the ones I either wish I had my first year abroad, or am super glad I remembered.
1) Duplicates of your favorite products
Before moving abroad, I would really look into what products you love the most and if they are available in the country you are moving to. For example: In Spain, stick deodorant is hard to come by. I was not expecting this when I moved there. I also had my favorite mascara shipped over about three times. Little things like this are hard to think about when there are 5,000 other things you have to deal with when you move abroad, but it’s worth it when you’re settled.
2) Command Strips/Hooks
These things are lifesavers for many reasons. I bring 2 packs of these every year. They are great because you can hang miscellaneous items, such as pictures or necklaces (what I mostly used them for) and they come off clean. This means they won’t ruin your walls, and you’ll definitely get back that security deposit that you’ll desperately need by the end of the year.
3) Decorations for your room
Again, bringing decorations for my room was never at the top of my priority list when moving abroad. But, when you are sitting in your room your first week staring at blank walls that no way make your room feel like “home”, it suddenly becomes a priority. Bring little decorations that will make your room feel like yours, it definitely helps when settling in.
4) A Laptop
I thought for a while that this was self-explanatory, but I have met lots of people that do not bring their laptop when moving abroad. While I know this could be for many reasons and that laptops are expensive, I think it is extremely important to have one. Whether you are teaching abroad or studying abroad, a laptop is a must.
5) A Journal
Your time abroad will most likely be life changing, and you most likely will want to have that recorded somewhere. I didn’t journal everyday, but I love looking back at the journal entries that I do have.
Pictures of family, friends, your significant other, your dog…whatever! I always bring a framed picture of my family to put on my desk, and then print some other pictures to have to sometimes flip through. These were especially helpful when I was homesick my first year abroad. I know that there are plenty of ways to see our family and friends in pictures through the internet, but there is something about having a hard copy of the pictures that you chose that makes it different.
Have more to add to this list? I would love to hear! Leave a comment in the section below! 🙂
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