You’ve got your course offer, visa, and tickets, you're all set for your study abroad journey. What’s next? Packing those bags! As an international student, it is imperative that you carefully plan your packing list, considering you might be visiting home only once or twice a year. The last thing you want to do is forget to pack an essential item. Here are a few rules that'll help you get organized, so you don't miss out on anything.
1. Prepare a list
Having a comprehensive packing list will help you track all the things you need for your stay. Begin with the basics, such as your documents, medications, clothing, toiletries, and electronic devices. You can later add your non-essentials, but do not add bulky items to your list unless absolutely needed.
2. Organize your essentials
You want all your clothes, shoes, and books to be in your check-in bag and your trip essentials on hand in your carry-on. This includes your ID, wallet, travel documents, medications, valuables, phone, laptop, tablet, pen, cash and cards. It’s also advisable to upload copies of all your important documents on the cloud storage in case of any issues. Other items you can include are entertainment for your flight, comfort-inducing items such as the neck pillow, as well as snacks and your water bottle. Make sure to check the weight limits on your flight for checked luggage and carry-on bags before packing.
3. Bear in mind the length of stay
As you curate your packing list, take into account how long you'll be staying and then determine the quantities accordingly. If you're planning on returning home during semester breaks you don’t have to pack a lot. However, if you plan to stay for the whole year, you'll need to pack accordingly.
4. Prepare for the weather
Take into account the type of climate, the region or state you're staying at, as it will determine the type of clothing you carry. There are some regions of India that experience all four seasons, while others only experience two. Learn about the local climate and pack accordingly. For example, the southern parts of India experience plenty of rain, so rain boots, umbrellas and raincoats are a must; whereas the northern parts are cold, so sweaters and mufflers are recommended.
5. Right clothing
Some colleges and universities expect their students to dress formally, especially students of law and MBA. Be sure to research the dress code and pack the appropriate clothes. Additionally, packing light materials such as cotton would be most comfortable because of a generally hot climate.
6. Pack in layers
Compartmentalize items into different categories when you're packing. Keep your shoes and food items away from your clothes. Roll and don’t fold your clothes, as it will help to fit more and also reduce wrinkles in the clothes you've packed. Be sure to take full advantage of all of the space within your bag by filling the gaps with socks, belts, or other small items. Opt for an expandable bag that can help you hold more items.
7. Avoid overpacking
Layout everything you think you'll need to pack and ask yourself if you absolutely need it all. Sort items into categories, such as shirts, pants, socks, etc., and determine how many items you actually need in each. Get rid of a few items if you have too many in a category.
When it comes to packing, it’s vital that you sort out what’s essential as it will help you avoid extra baggage and courier charges. Following these aforementioned rules while you pack for your trip will help smoothen your stay while you study in India. Happy Packing!