Nine tips to help you pack for your internship abroad

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After months of preparation, hard work and following up, you have finally bagged that dream internship. The wait is over and you have reached the final moments before you embark on the journey of a lifetime. Sounds really exciting, doesn’t it. But, you still have one big, and important, step to complete before you start your journey – that of packing for your trip. While what you take in your suitcase depends on where you are going, and how much you need as a person, here are some packing tips to get you started:

  • Make a checklist: Keep a checklist handy while packing to make sure that that you don’t forget anything. Before you start, write down all the things that you would be needing, remove those which may not be that necessary, and tick off the list as you go.
  • Pack for the weather: Check the season and temperature of the place that you are going to and pack accordingly. There is no point in taking thermals during summer, or shorts during winter. Always get into the airplane with some winter wear clothes in your luggage, just in case you need them when you disembark. It’s also best to dress in layers if you are going to a colder climate, since you can always shed off the extra layer of clothing.
  • Professional and casual wear: Bring a mix of both – you may have to dress professionally at work, but there will be plenty of occasions where you can dress casually.
  • Invest in a good suitcase: International travel will require long commutes in airports. The last thing you want is a broken suitcase. Invest in a sturdy trolley/bag, which is not too bulky and is easy to carry around.
  • Medication: Make sure that you pack all the medicines you require. Some countries may not have the same medicines that you are used to, or they may be too expensive. Keep a medical kit ready with essentials.
  • Toiletries: Stock up on small toiletries – soaps, shampoos, deodorants, toothpaste – these may be more expensive in the country you are going to. However, don’t buy huge, bulky toiletries.
  • Electronics: Ensure that you have packed your laptop/tablet, camera or smartphone, shaver and other electronic essentials in your luggage. It is also a good idea to buy a convertor/adaptor which is accepted at your host country. You can also buy a universal adaptor which can be used in most countries.
  • Food: While some countries are strict about the kind of food you bring, carrying a couple of maggi packets or ready to eat food packets may be a great help when you are not able to cook a proper meal/eat out.
  • Keep your documentation ready: Put your passport, insurance, tickets, and all other important documents in a separate handy bag and keep that on your person always. While this is something you should have done much before, there is no harm in double checking that your visa is stamped, you have your employers/university/host’s letter ready. You may also need to show that you have enough funds in your bank account/or confirmation that you will receive payment during your internship period, at the immigration. Also ensure that you have sufficient foreign currency with you to tide you over until you get your banking sorted. Keep all these important documents on your carry-on baggage.

About the author:

Aniket Singh works for Apple Inc. in California, United States. He is also the author of “Intern Abroad This Summer”.

Aniket holds a BTech degree in Electrical Engineering from the IIT, Madras, Chennai, and a Master’s degree in Wireless Systems from Politecnico Di Torino in Torino, Italy. He has interned at the University of Southampton in the United Kingdom and Ecole Polytechnic Federale de Lausanne in Lausanne, Switzerland during this studies.

Visit him at www.aniketsingh.com

Check out his book at www.internabroadthissummer.com