Recently, I've noticed that some people could use help figuring out what to pack for admitted student days. People who have never been on a plane may also need tips on how to go about with luggage. Here's some basic stuff to keep in mind for your travels:
STEP 1: The Types of Luggage You Can Have
1. The Personal Item: a purse, tote, laptop bag, BACKPACK (recommended). Make sure it's something you can put under the seat in front of you. The personal item is always free and you keep it on you (includes umbrellas).
2. Carry-on: also usually free; duffel bag, or a small suitcase-- most of which are labeled as carry-on. If yours isn't labeled, consider if it will fit into an overheard compartment without taking up a lot of other space (I was on a plane in February, where I had to squish my duffel in because some people decided to use hiking backpacks for their carry-ons;. Most airlines don't bother to actually measure them so they were able to get away with it). Containers can only be up to 3floz and trust me, unless you're some crazy who uses entire bottles of soap in one night, these bottles will last you a good trip (maybe a week or two). I have some bottles I still haven't replaced after many trips.
3. Checked Baggage: most likely not free; up to 50lb and the TSA has a size limit on them, I believe. Check with airlines about the size limit. You can put basically anything in your baggage as long as it isn't prohibited. You can put full size soaps in here but because they're so roughly handled, it's recommended you don't.
STEP 2: What to Bring
For a college visit, you wanna bring clothes and other stuff that fits the weather-- especially if it turns out that the weather isn't what you thought it'd be. I'm visiting 2 colleges and am bringing a dress with leggings, shorts, tank tops, camisoles, jeans, a thermal, and a flannel (along with obvious undergarments like socks, bras, underwear and pajamas (shorts and shirt)) because weather can change in a snap. (I got caught in a blizzard at my last college visit.)
Wear your outerwear and bulkiest clothes on the plane so you can save space in your bag. I wore a hoodie on the plane at Hollins College so I saved tons of space. This time I'm wearing my flannel and heavy shorts plus boots. I'm only bringing one pair of walking shoes and that's my boots. Try to only bring one pair of walking shoes-- unless your destinations have really different geography.
(Oh and pack extra underwear please in case of accidents or emergencies or delays.)
STEP 3: The Toiletries
Like I said, travel size bottles for toiletries should do you just fine unless you're somebody who absolutely needs an entire bottle of shampoo in your hair or whatever. Most travel-sized toiletries are made to supply you well with a few drops as companies know the hassle of traveling via plane.
BRING FLIP FLOPS FOR SHOWER SHOES, PLEASE! Last trip I forgot and was blessed to be at a small all-women's college where my host's roommate let me borrow her shoes.
Also bring a towel. You can save space with a lot of these things by rolling them up and stuffing (especially stuffing your bras if you're packing any or just corners.)
STEP 4: Bedding/Sleep
Since most colleges and universities ask you to bring a pillow/blanket/sheets/sleeping bag/etc, you can carry your pillow on the plane. Nobody will really judge you. Though I'd suggest stuffing it in a bag while in the airport so you don't lose it. The same goes for a sleeping bag. A lot of people in the airport honestly sleep. so they just carry those items around. But once again, I recommend stuffing them in a bag so you can travel with ease.
STEP 5: Food
Bring an empty water bottle to fill up at water fountains past Transportation Security Administration (TSA). You can go to small convenience stores and buy snacks or get food at restaurants.
Hope this helps! Have a good time visiting your possible new homes!
Written by Jennifer Gagné
More information about this topic can be provided by Jennifer Gagné
Published: 5 April 2015
Updated: 5 April 2015