The Struggles of Packing for Three Months Abroad

I cannot believe how soon it is until I leave for Europe! Lately, I have been working on packing my suitcases and it has been a struggle!  I am running into a number of problems including…

  1. I can only bring a checked bag and a carry on since I have to lug around all the bags by myself
  2. Since I am student teaching, I have to pack a lot of dress clothes which limits the amount of “street clothes” i have room for
  3. SHOES, SHOES, and more SHOES! I need too many shoes to go with my dress clothes.
  4. Because it is going to be cold, I have to pack a warm coat and that alone takes up too much space!
  5. Electronics….my carry on has so many electronics in it that are awkwardly shaped and take up too much space. I am bringing my “fancy” camera and that alone takes up a good third of my carry on!
  6. 50 lbs weight limit for my checked bag

I have already packed and then unpacked and taken out clothes, but I keep thinking about things I need to add! I am using the vacuum bags for my clothes, it is just the darn shoes taking up so much space! I think in the end, I will just end up paying for an extra bag on the flight home….which will cost $100! I can’t believe how expensive it is!

If anyone has an packing tips, I would love to hear them! Post your tips in the comments! 

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5 thoughts on “The Struggles of Packing for Three Months Abroad

  1. Elizabeth

    Even though it’d be warm, you could wear your coat during your flight to save packing space, since you’ll most likely be wearing it on the way back.

  2. Kathleen

    Look into your airline luggage information, as they used to allow a camera bag to be separate and free from the luggage…just like your purse (and then put your other electronic devices in there, since they’ll have to come out for the security scanners anyway. Think neutral on the shoes and pick a couple pair that can go with anything. You’ll acquire others while there, but think rainy season and your everyday wear will probably include rain boots. Elizabeth is right, travel with your coat or other layers or bulky items on, as you can always take them off on the plane. Plus they roll up and make a great pillow on the long flight…especially your down jacket! Have a great time and take extra media sticks or an external drive for all the pics! Also, if you’re close to a base, you can always check in and see what they carry in their exchanges.

    • Thanks Kathleen! These are all useful tips!

      • Kathleen

        Ah, the things one learns when moving to an island for two years and can only take what fits in their luggage! Luckily I had help getting other items back…but know exactly what your going through. Unfortunately my bags were too heavy and I ended up doing a quick sort of “essential” and “non essential” items at the airport. Lucky for me my parents could take the non essential items back with them! I had so many layers on that when I landed in the tropical environment, I had to take off the layers…because it was so humid out!

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