What to Shop for When Preparing to Study Abroad

By Clare Jorgensen — Did you know that there are over 200 Marquette students who will be spending the next semester in various countries abroad?   And that includes me! I will be going to Madrid!

christmas gifts study abroad

During this time of buying and returning gifts from the holiday season, I thought it would be appropriate to give some advice to these many students as to what to look for or what to ask for from family members that will be ideal when spending a semester abroad. Clothes are obviously something that people may think to ask for in order to accommodate the different temperatures that students may encounter, but there are some items that could be very useful.

During the travel process, it will be important that the students’ belongings are kept safe during the long flights and other moves they will be making. Because of this, it could be smart to buy some small locks for the suitcases, to make sure nothing unzips or gets stolen. This will also be smart for the interior of the suitcases, so important documents or money can be held safely.

Along with safety, students should be able to travel with comfort with the varying flights. Students can invest in a good neck pillow, instead of the scratchy and thin pillow that is given by the flight attendants. If excitement is keeping anyone up during a flight, then a good book or good movie will allow the flight to seem much shorter.

If anyone is like me, I plan on making various trips to countries outside of the one I am staying in during my time abroad. While I feel I am moderately proficient in Spanish, it will still be smart to buy some pocket phrase books in Spanish for some phrases I may not know, and it could still apply to other languages like French, German, Chinese, etc.

Since I plan on doing some other travelling, I know will also need various converters for different countries so I can always have the capability to charge my phone or plug in any necessary items.

When travelling, many students will save money by staying in hostels. Hostels are not as fancy or accommodating as hotels, so here are some things that could be useful: filtered water bottles, cheap sheets and towels, a small pillow, and some locks to put on the duffle bags or backpacks that students will be travelling with instead of the big suitcases.

There are countless other ideas, but these could be things that people may overlook when thinking about study abroad things to buy. If anyone has any ideas, feel free to post comments.

It has been a wonderful semester having the opportunity to write for the Marquette Educator. I hope my blogs proved to be interesting and/or thought-provoking for everyone. I hope the readers have a great break, and I hope that Marquette students will come back to campus eager and ready to start the spring semester off right!

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