How to Pack for a Year Abroad

I have already written a post on shopping for a year abroad & my packing list but now, I want to talk about how to pack because to be honest, it wasn’t as easy as I thought and I am very glad that I didn’t leave it until the day before.

Step 1
I emptied all of my summer clothes on to the bed & then started to get rid of things that might be ruined after tumble drying or that I didn’t want. Consider this a first draft for your packing.
Step 2
Think logically about what kind of clothes you will be able to get the most use out of. Which tops can be worn with multiple things. Which shorts go with everything. Get rid of more things.
Step 3
Roll your clothes, don’t fold them. This takes up less space! It also makes you think of getting rid of anything that will wrinkle too much.

*realises that I may have too much*
Step 4
Sort your items into packing cubes. I have a set of different sizes that I use for different things as well as a large one.
I used the largest for my shorts/leggings/bikinis. The next largest holds my tops/tshirts/cardigans. The medium sized cube has my playsuits & dresses in. The smallest cube holds my non-leakable toiletries such as make-up wipes, razors, bobbles & clips.

Step 5
Pack it into your backpack in whatever way suits it best. For me, this meant putting the packing cubes in largest first and packing remaining space with other, smaller things.
Step 6
My backpack weighed 17kg once full. As a suitcase, that would be great however, carrying it was too much. I have a temperamental back as it is & I know that if I had to carry around that weight for a year, I would be cranky & it would ruin it. Which brings me on to step 7.
Step 7
Start over. Time to get rid of more weight. I have a pink bag for sun-creams etc but I figured that though I have a lot, that’s the bag that will gradually get lighter as time goes on & I go down to only having 1 bottle per factor. I was going to need to look at my clothes/notebooks/extras instead.
I got rid of about 12 items of clothing. I had 4 notebooks but I’ll be leaving 2 at home and will be swapping them over once they’re full. I’ve also ordered a new, smaller backpack that also has wheels so can double as a suitcase.

Step 8
Start packing into the new backpack.
It took a few attempts and re-arranging as well as adapting my plane outfit to include trainers instead of converse but I’m finally packed!

|| Related: Packing List for a Year Abroad ||
How do you pack?

How to Pack for a Year in Australia

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|| Packing List for a Year Abroad ||

Post Author: bexcapades

Bookish person trying to get through this crazy thing called life.

13 thoughts on “How to Pack for a Year Abroad


    (January 16, 2018 - 10:44 am)

    I’m going on a year abroad this September, I’m so worried about packing! I get nervous my luggage will get lost so I try to fit everything into hand luggage, but for an entire year… It’d be an expensive shopping trip when I got there 😬


      (January 16, 2018 - 10:48 am)

      My main advice would be to get a backpack with wheels, that way if it’s heavy, you can still get around! You couldn’t really do it with just hand luggage (at least, I couldn’t). I would recommend around an 80L bag! ☺️


    (January 16, 2018 - 4:09 pm)

    Thanks for posting. I have never thought of rolling my clothes instead of folding them. Enjoy your year abroad!


      (January 16, 2018 - 11:46 pm)

      This is the first time I’ve done it as I was sceptical but it really does save space! Very handy tip!

    Taiwo B.

    (January 20, 2018 - 12:45 pm)

    This is such an amazing post. And I like how well ordered and straightforward it is. Well done and happy travelling!


      (January 20, 2018 - 12:46 pm)

      Thank you! I updated my draft of it as I was packing to keep it as structured as possible! 🙂


    (January 21, 2018 - 6:22 am)

    Almost exactly the same method!
    And we have the same travel towel 🙂
    The North Left


      (January 21, 2018 - 8:32 am)

      Hahaha! I love it! Indecisive life!
      Bex 🙂

    […] Bex @ Bexcapades […]


    (March 1, 2018 - 5:22 am)

    You are so organized! Those packing cubes look like life savers, I need some because right now I’m just using plastic bags. Better than nothing, right?!
    Dianna <3


      (March 1, 2018 - 5:54 am)

      Omg. The packing cubes don’t half make my life easier on the road 😂

    […] Related: How to Pack for a Year Abroad […]

    […] Bex @ Bexcapades […]

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