Studying abroad? Here’s what to pack.

Around this time four years ago, I was preparing for a semester abroad by frantically packing every item of clothing I’d ever worn, along with hundreds of CDs (remember those?), and a four month’s supply of toiletries. Can you say overkill?

As with all packing, less is more. Over at Matador, Jenny Sherman lays out everything you need for your upcoming trip. Among her suggestions? A travel diary:

“Even if you don’t keep one at home, you’ll be glad to have it there. Get a nice one like a Moleskine and you will be more likely to write down your experience with the crazy waitress or the local slang you just learned.”

And don’t forget an extra duffel bag for transporting all those touristy souvenirs home. And yes, you will buy them, so don’t act like you won’t.

Also, you don’t need a four month’s supply of toothpaste*, deodorant, razors, and shaving cream. Unless you’re studying abroad in Antarctica, these items will be available.

Finally, think hard before bringing anything you can’t afford to lose. I can tell you from painful personal experience that expensive items can easily be stolen from dorm rooms, left on trains, stepped on, and otherwise rendered unusable. Don’t let it happen to you.

Read the whole thing here.

*Offer not available in the UK.