Fall 2022 #6
November 21, 2022
by Emiliana Kisanga, MUDEC Student Intern
One of the skills I have sharpened while studying abroad at MUDEC has been packing for travel. Visiting a different country almost every weekend has forced me to narrow down my packing list to the essentials.
There are several issues that come with overpacking. Most MUDEC students travel with a regular sized backpack, and a few use travel-size backpacks. Both options have limited space, and carrying multiple outfits leaves little room for other travel essentials or souvenirs that you might purchase. In the beginning of the semester, I was packing several outfits for two-day trips.
The next issue that comes with over packing is size. An overpacked backpack might not fit underneath the seat when you are traveling; depending on the airline, you might be charged to place your bag in the overhead compartments. It might cost you extra for the unnecessary items you packed. Additionally, consider the back pain that comes with carrying around a heavy backpack.
What I have learned from my own mistakes is that under-packing is better than overpacking. For a two-day trip, I have found the ideal number of outfits to be three. One outfit can be worn the day you are traveling to your destination and back to Luxembourg. The other two outfits are for the two full days you have at your destination. The key to packing smart is mixing and matching, which means having a strong base (pair of pants) and multiple shirts in rotation.
Practice makes perfect! It takes a few trips to perfect the art of packing. The list I’ve created below is a foundation that can be adjusted. Please keep in mind the climate to which you are traveling to, and carrying extra travel documents you might need to provide at your destination. Lastly, remember to give yourself some grace when you forget something!
Emiliana’s Travel Packing List
- Boarding pass (Apple wallet)
- Cash and cards
- Portable charger + cables
- Cell phone
- Tote bag/fanny pack
- Umbrella (depending on climate)
Products (liquids <100mL)
- Body wash/moisturizer
- Face wash/moisturizer
- Toothpaste + toothbrush
- 1 pair of jeans/pants
- 1 pair of leisure pants
- Long sleeve shirt
- Short sleeve shirt
- Light sweater
- Medium sized towel
- Extra undergarments
- Shower shoes (flip flops)
- Flats/boots (depending on the climate)
Other habits that I have formed as the result of traveling so frequently have been packing snacks and face masks. To-go snacks are very useful when flights or trains are delayed, canceled, or when there are long layovers. I always pack a bag of potato chips and a small sandwich. You can save some money if you buy your snacks outside of the airport; prices tend to be on the higher side when you shop inside the airport.
I’ve been carrying masks more often because some airlines require passengers to wear them when traveling to specific destinations. For example, I traveled to Barcelona, Spain last weekend, and Ryanair required passengers to wear masks on board. Although this has occurred a few times, masks are also useful to have when traveling in compact and crowded areas. In addition, I like to carry around a packet of Vitamin C immune support.
The last tip I would suggest when packing for a weekend trip is to visit Re-Open EU. The website (and app) provide information on travel and health measures in EU and Schengen-associated countries.
I cannot stress this enough: it is important to do your research before traveling to a country. Research things like the weather, currency, language, and restaurants. It is better to travel prepared!
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