3 Tips to Make Packing for Study Abroad Smoother

By: Avery Buckman

When studying abroad, you will want to travel most weekends, but have you thought about how you plan on packing everything into one backpack for the weekend. It took me some time to master this, but I have successfully gotten it down. In this blog I will be providing you with 3 tips so you can be prepared and master your weekend packing. 

However, before the tips, you have to make sure you have a good backpack for your weekend trips. I highly recommend Ebag backpacks. They are super roomy and open up like a suitcase so it is easy to pack and access everything! 

Now, here are some tips for weekend traveling packing. 

Tip 1: Buy Ziploc airtight bags

For my first couple of trips I did not use my ziploc bags and that was the biggest mistake ever. My bag was unorganized and messy and my clothes took up the entire backpack. I then started packing my clothes in my air tight ziplocs and this was a game changer. I was able to pack many more clothes in a more organized manner and it took up half the room it did before. This also helps because while on my trip, my clothes are not loosely thrown around everywhere, they are contained in the ziploc making it easier to stay neat while traveling. My ziploc takes up about half of my backpack, so I have plenty of room to pack my shoes and toiletries. Another good purchase is packing cubes. These are similar to the ziploc airtight bag, These items take out all the air so your clothes take up less room and you can fit more!

Tip 2: Pack efficiently

You do not have much room in your backpack, so pack efficiently. Envision your outfits for each day and lay them out before packing. You do not need a different pair of pants for each day you are traveling. One pair of jeans can get you many different outfits. While it is nice to have many choices in outfits, for weekend trips you have to know what you will be wearing because you don’t have much room for choices. Also, I traveled with my friends so we all shared clothes. When it came to shoes, I would pack one pair and wear one pair and this was perfect. I cannot stress enough how much easier your packing will be if you plan ahead what you will wear so you can only pack what you need.

Tip 3: Wear your biggest items of clothing on the plane

Like I mentioned, you have very limited room for weekend traveling, so wear your biggest articles of clothing on the plane to maximize room. It is much easier to pack when it is warmer out because summer clothes don’t take up much room, but winter packing can be more difficult. You need thicker clothes, winter jackets, hats, gloves, etc. On the plane, wear your winter coat and thickest sweater because they will take up LOTS of room in your bag. Additionally, wear boots and pack sneakers because sneakers take up less room in your bag.

With these tips, your packing will go much smoother. When everything is all packed and ready, try to make your backpack as flat as possible. If you have a ginormous bag that is super fat on your back, the airport workers may stop you and have you pay for it as a carry on rather than personal item. By making my bag as flat as possible, my bag looks smaller and I don’t get questioned. Also, for weekend trips, only bring a personal item because if you pay for a carryon every weekend you travel, that will add up very fast and it is not necessary. The first couple of trips may be overwhelming when packing, but I promise by trip 3 or 4, packing for the weekend will be second nature. 

Read more: The Ultimate Guide to Your Study Abroad Packing List (10 Essential Items!)