Congratulations on being granted a student visa! If you've never been away from home and not sure of exactly what to bring along with you for this adventure, then you are on the right page. This post will highlight some of the most important travel items to include in your luggage before jetting off.
Travel Documents: Your passport, student visa, immunization records and I-20 are some of the documents you will most definitely be required to show proof of to immigration and custom officials at the airport. An absence of any required travel documentation could impede your travel plans, so in the midst of all the excitement and nervousness, do not get carried away and forget to include your travel documents in your handbag.
Essential Clothes: Checking the climate of your destination will be an essential guide in determining the type of clothes to bring along. However, if you're coming from a different climate zone, there's no need to fret! There will be an opportunity to shop during your early days of your arrival to get you settled. As always, don't forget to bring a few of your traditional clothes as they will come in handy for school events such as International Week.
Money: Have a few bucks on you, either in cash or card for any emergent needs that may arise during your trip.
Digital device(s): If you already have a laptop, camera, phone, you may want to come along with it and save yourself some money, that's only if they will still be functional in your new destination. Time really does fly quickly so remember to take as many pictures as you can and document your study abroad experience.
Comfort items: The thought of leaving home for a while can sometimes get overwhelming, especially when it will be long before you re-unite with family and friends. To ease the process of settling into a new environment, comfort items such as pictures with loved ones and staple foods help greatly with the transition. Be sure to be moderate with the type of food you decide to carry along and check out for food regulations as applicable at immigration and customs.
Souvenirs from home: Souvenirs such as flags and key rings are a great way of sharing your culture and forming new relationships with others. So when you do your last minute shopping for your trip, don't forget to pick a few souvenirs for your future roommates and friends.
Have a safe trip abroad and enjoy your college/graduate school experience!