Wednesday, June 18, 2014

How to make studying abroad happen: Suitcases

Studying abroad is one of the best things I have ever done! It is exciting, full of adventures, rewarding, and so much more. With all that comes some challenges, as well....and I don't just mean deciding which of the many restaurants you are going to go to for dinner each night (which you will also be faced with). I am talking about the things that you won't even think about until you are in the midst of the struggle. 

First and foremost, I am talking about your luggage. Yes, you want to fit as much as possible in them because you will be away for months and months. However, you have to think about how you are going to get from the airport to your apartment/dorm/homestay.

This is something that many people overlook, including my sister and her friends back in 2008. They all arrived in Heathrow airport with their 40 pound bags, carry-ons, and purses but hadn't thought about all the stairs and tube stations they were going to have to lug them through to get to their dorms in North London.

Even with my sister's warning, it took me until I landed in London to realize that I had packed way more than I could physically carry all the way to my East London flat. 

To avoid this problem, my first piece of advice would be to find a program with airport transfers included. However, that's not always possible (like for my sister and I) and so my best advice is to buy good luggage...like these amazing suitcases I saw at Costco the other day! I'm not sure how I made it through two semesters abroad without buying one, and now looking back I realize I could have made it a lot easier on myself with one or two of these.



They have four wheels! It would be so nice to not have to worry about lifting it, except when there is a curb or gap. My biggest problem with my luggage was that even when I rolled it, it still only had two wheels and would often get stuck. Plus, these Kirkland suitcases have a hard shell to protect everything. My suitcases were really beat up from all the travel, but I imagine that this type of suitcase would withstand the shuffling from plane to train to city streets. If you're still not convinced, check out the video below of me pulling two of the large suitcases.


*This is not a sponsored post. Costco and Kirkland have no idea who I am, but I was really impressed with these suitcases and wanted to share. 

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