Victoria’s Ultimate Study Abroad Packing List

If you’re like me, packing is the bane of your existence. So when it came time for me to pack for my 6 month study abroad trip, I had a nightmare of a time fitting my whole life in one suitcase.

In the end, I packed one suitcase and two carry-ons, and ended up buying one suitcase on the return trip. However, I was able to survive off of my one suitcase, just purchasing a few clothing items along the way.

However, to help ease your packing troubles, I’ve included my list of packing supplies that I took to Barcelona. I was packing for a Mediterranean climate, and I loved pairing skirts and tights. Most of my travels were to other metropolitan cities, with some day excursions to nature in between.


  • 3 Sweaters (cozy white, brown/beige, one patterned)
  • 3 Short sleeve shirts (1 white, 1 black, one colors)
  • 3 Tank tops (I was going to warm climate)
  • 2 Going out tops (I bought MANY more crop tops in Barcelona)
  • 2 Nice, work-attire tops (you’ll never know when you need to dress up!)
  • 4 Dresses (most were cotton and could easily be layered)


  • Hoodie (you may not wear it out, but you’ll want it to stay warm inside!)
  • 1 Warm coat
  • 1 Versatile black leather jacket
  • 1 Light jean jacket
  • 1 Rain coat



  • Jeans (3 pairs)
  • Black skinny jeans
  • Shorts (1 pair- I bought European-style ones there for the summer)
  • Skirts! (I brought 3 black, 1 jean, one pola-dot, and I bought a whole more there. I LOVED skirts- you could dress them up or dress them down)
  • 3 pairs of leggings (of varying warmth)
  • Work out shorts


  • Brown boots (I bought black boots there)
  • Sneakers (hiking!)
  • Black flats
  • Birkenstocks/comfy sandals
  • Note: I bought a great pair of going out heels in Barcelona!


  • 5 Scarves (of varying warmth and colors)
  • 3 Headbands (easy outfit changes)
  • 2 Pairs of gloves
  • 5 necklaces (some long, some short. Flashy jewlery is a no-no, but simple chains and chokers can go a long way to change an outfit!)
  • 2 Purses (1 portable and 1 for day travel. Europe had great leather, so I was also able to by a great brown leather bag that I still use to this day!)
  • 2 Pairs of sunglasses



  • 2 months of feminine products (it takes a while to find the right kind abroad)
  • Contact solution/extra contacts/extra pair of glasses
  • Makeup (it’s expensive abroad!!!)
  • Contraceptives


  • Underwear (2 weeks)
  • Socks (8 pairs)
  • Bras (3 day, 1 sports)
  • Warm Socks (including one pair of wool!)
  • Tights (thin black, fleece tights for warmth)
  • 1 Pair comfy pjs
  • 1 Swimsuit (I bought many cheap swimsuits abroad!)



  • 2 Outlet adapters
  • Your laptop and charger
  • Your smart phone and charger (you can still use it with wifi)
  • Camera and charger
  • 2 Pairs of headphones (you’ll need a back up for when you inevitably lose yours)

Safe Travels


  • $300 in local currency to start off your trip
  • 1 Sleep sack/pair of sheets for traveling in hostels
  • 1 Journal to start documenting your adventures!
  • Emergency contact list
  • Extra copies of all documents: Visa, passport, prescriptions, health insurance, program contacts, etc.


Convenience Items 

  • 1 Travel towel
  • Small umbrella
  • Student ID (many places have discounts for students)
  • Travel pillow
  • Flash drive (gotta back up those photos! Bonus for the ones that connect directly to your iPhone or smart phone)
  • A fun water bottle! (paying for water bottles everywhere is rough)

What to buy there

  • Soaps, toothpaste, toothbrush, hair products (including hot tools- American ones will often blow out with the sockets there)
  • Slippers (tile floors are cold)
  • Portable phone (Vodafone and Movistar are the most common)
  • For those of you studying in large cities in Spain, there are HUGE sales in January and in the summer- up to 75% off items. And those European styles are a few years ahead of the US 🙂


What did you pack for your move abroad?

* Image source:


3 Comments Add yours

  1. theviewfrommybalcony says:

    Such a helpful list – thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

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