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Introducing our guest blogger, Shannon, who advises on packing for studying abroad!

Why hello there! I’m Shannon and hopefully, you’ll decide to follow my journey as I take on UCC this semester. So to start this off, here are some random facts about myself….

  • I’m from Long Island, New York, but go to college at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut where I’m currently a sophomore Occupational Therapy Major.
  • I have never drunk a pint of beer before.
  • Wandering cities is one of my favourite things to do.
  • Thrift shopping and reading are also up there.
  • If I had artistic talent, I would want to be in the fashion industry when I grow up.
  • Taylor Swift is one of my favourite people ever.
  • I really wish unicorns were real.
  • I’m counting down the days until I can rent my own Brooklyn apartment and live the artsy, adventurous NYC life.
  • I spent one month being a vegan.

If you didn’t just skip all of that mumble jumble, you are seriously awesome. If you did, I don’t think you missed much.  Let the telling of this adventure begin?

suitcase

Packing- Easy for guys, the hardest thing ever for girls.

One of my biggest worries, besides getting homesick, was packing for my five month long adventure. Where do you even begin? Cramming enough clothes to entertain your creative energy for a pretty long time is no easy task. So, here’s a guide it.

Start off with the basics!

Bring your favorite pairs of jeans that go with everything and fit you well. Don’t forget to take a pair or two of bolder ones that are sure to stand out as well. Another key piece is relaxed fit t-shirts. Before I left, I went to Target and got an 8 pack of White Hanes V-necks. Dressing them up or down is so easy, and all it takes is a quirky scarf or necklace to give it whole new look. While you’re at it, don’t forget to pack a ton of leggings. Like the white t-shirts, they go with everything and are super easy to cram into small spaces.

Bring layers.

The weather in Ireland changes so fast; one moment it’s raining, the next it’s super sunny. I never leave my room without a few solid layers on. Sweaters, although bulky are perfect to throw over the white tees that you’ll hopefully bring and don’t forget a jacket to fend off the rain. Personally, I brought two; a warmer one in a neutral color, and another that was brighter and better suited for warmer days.

Invest in comfortable shoes.

Be aware, you will be walking a lot while you’re at UCC. It’s inevitable. However, wearing running sneakers every day gets boring, so be sure to bring a pair of Converse or Vans with you. Anything that you can walk in for a few hours and not have your feet feeling like they’re going to fall off will be perfect.

If you “kind of” think you’re going to wear it, don’t bring it.

We all have those pieces that we want to start introducing into our daily wardrobe. Trying new things is always great, but wasting important luggage space with clothes you may not even wear is a big no-no. Pack only things that you love and have worn a ton of times previously.

If you forgot it, you can always buy it. When you get to Cork, it will likely take you around a day or so to discover this little place called Penny’s. Ladies, it is a clothing heaven. Everything you can imagine is there, and at great prices. It’s totally unreal. Without a doubt, plan to buy stuff there so don’t sweat about not bringing a few of you must haves. You will find them at Penny’s and will find yourself there constantly, whether you like it or not. It’s that awesome.

There you have it, five tips on how to put your life into some suitcases. I know that it’s easier said than done, but I promise, it won’t be as painful as you think.  Start a few days before you leave and keep on eliminating from your giant pile a little bit each day. Before you know it, you’ll be ready to go, with one or two suitcases under 50 pounds!

Want me to write about something or answer one of your questions? Send me an email at Shannon.Corcoran@Quinnipiac.edu and I’ll post the answer on here!

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