Essential luggage packing tips for international students

TRAVELLING from where you study to your home country and vice versa can be a hassle, especially when it comes to PACKING! Trinity College Foundation Studies students Anthea Clarke, Karen Li and Lynn Li share some tips and advice on this common dilemma for international students.

Traveler silhouettes at airport,Beijing

Packing all your clothes and items every single time you have to leave the country can be a real hassle, especially as an international student.

As international students have to pack constantly to go back and forth between their home countries and the country of study, we’ve got some tips for students to overcome this burden so they can have a more relaxing and enjoyable flight.

Packing your Check-in Luggage


Roll all your clothes! By tightly rolling all your clothes, this will take up less space than by folding them. For shirts, fold the body (or sleeves) in half and then roll the rest tightly. As for jeans and pants, folding it in half and rolling it tightly will also help in saving space for you to pack in more clothes and other things!

Put your socks in shoes! Roll all your socks and put them into your shoes to save even more space! This also helps keep the shape and form of your shoes in check.

Bring elastic bands! Elastic bands come in handy for different situation. From using it as a hair tie, rolling up posters or using it around your wallet to prevent it from sliding out of your pocket, elastic bands are certainly quite useful!

Ziplocs! Always take a range of Ziplocs in different sizes, as they can be used for packing personal underwear, toiletries, keeping valuable items like earrings or other jewellery. They can also be used to store all your liquid products to prevent leaking or explosion. For large Ziplocs, you can use these to separate your dirty clothes from your clean ones!

Shoes! Catalogue the shoes you’d like to bring home, and pack them in separate bags – sandals in one and boots in another for example. That way you can pack according to shape in your suitcase and fit them into various spaces in your suitcase.

Essential Items for your Hand-Carry


Important Items! Without things like your passport, ticket and visa you probably wouldn’t be able to depart from the country! Other important objects like your phone and wallet should also be brought along with your carry-on. Toiletries like moisturiser, eye drops, tissue paper or aspirins should be considered and an empty bottle you can fill up on the plan with water to hydrate yourself!

Music! Make sure you’ve got your phone, tablet or similar electronic device that has your favourite type of music to relax to. The sounds of an aircraft and even noisy passengers (like crying babies) may eventually get on your nerves, so pop those earphones in and let the world around you disappear for a moment!

Comfort! Taking a scarf with you is really useful as this can serve as a blanket, a belt for your travels or even a soft surface that you can sit on! And the great thing is that it doesn’t even add much weight to your hand-carry! Also, bringing a travel pillow or (an inflatable one if you don’t want to avoid the bulk) can be pretty useful if you need some soft cushion to lean on to sleep. And if you like to fall asleep in complete darkness, we suggest you take a sleeping mask with you.

This story was produced by media and communication students at Trinity College Foundation Studies as part of Meld’s community newsroom collab. Education institutions, student clubs/societies and community groups interested in being involved can get in touch us via 

There are 3 comments

  1. Adrienne

    I would recommend American Tourister for all students. They’re really fun-looking as well as being incredibly hardy and practical. They are designed with young people in mind so they’re really cost-effective without losing any of the benefits of a good case. I got mine from Luggage Hub in Oakleigh, Melbourne (online store: and would definitely recommend their products for any savvy traveller.

  2. Ramona Klein

    You are a great packer! I rarely can pack my stuff in such a great order. Most of the time I place my belongings in a way that it has no space and I take out them with wrinkles. I definitely want to improve my packing skills!! Thanks for sharing

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