This is a sponsored post in partnership with StudentUniverse and Her Campus Media. All words and opinions are my own.
This year is the year that my travel senses were tingling, and not even just tingling—they were. FLARING. UP. I traveled to Ireland on a study abroad trip in January (which was super expensive, but I’ll get into that later). It was my first travel experience, so naturally, I tried to prepare myself as much as possible by reading a ton of blog posts about clothes and things to pack for travel. But it wasn’t until after the trip was over that I actually realized the importance of some of the things I did bring, and some of the things I failed to bring. Which brings me to this post…
I feel like fashion accessories are things that people often overlook because 1) they think it’ll just add unnecessary weight to their luggage and 2) they tell themselves they can just buy whatever they didn’t bring pack when they go to malls or boutiques abroad. So that’s why I’m here to clear the air and tell you what accessories and items you’ll actually need no matter where you travel.
But back to this whole ‘traveling is expensive’ thing…Not gonna lie, my study abroad bill for the winter semester left me mentally scarred, and since then, while I don’t regret my experience AT ALL, I’ve decided that it’s just so much cheaper to travel on your own since you won’t be paying for tuition, books, credits, or anything like that. And there are actually services and companies out there that, you know, actually want college students like us to go out and see the world because we’ll learn so much more when we’re not in a classroom setting. If you want to get discounted rates on flights, tours, and group travel for your next adventure, I highly suggest taking a look at StudentUniverse. There are so many exclusive deals and so much insight into traveling that you’ll seriously be inspired to book a ticket ASAP! Don’t forget to download their mobile app for easy access, and take a peek at their site to see if you find any accommodations that pique your interest.
So after you’ve booked a ticket and accommodations that actually fit within your budget (or your parents’ budget), you can get packing! Here are some accessories you shouldn’t leave home without.
1. A cute passport holder.
I know this isn’t exactly a fashion accessory, but it’s still a really important accessory for traveling! really wish I had invested in a super cute passport holder because it’s a good way to keep your important documents—passport, ID, boarding pass—in one place where they won’t get lost or crumpled or torn. Plus, every time my group moved to another city in Ireland, our professor collected our passports for safety reasons, so it would’ve been good to have something to easily identify my passport book. Get a really cute one that you can use over and over again. Bonus if you can get your passport holder to match your luggage tag!
2. A pretty pair of sunglasses + a case.
Sunglasses are my favorite style accessory ever!! I have way too many to count, so naturally it was difficult to choose which one I’d take with me (spoiler alert: I ended up choosing two to bring along for the ride because I was so indecisive). You definitely don’t want to spend money on sunglasses while abroad (unless they’re, like, designer in the area or something) because they can be really expensive. Make sure you have a nice pair as well as a case to protect it.
3. Cute all-weather boots.
Seriously, no matter where in the world you go, you cannot forget to invest in and pack a good pair of weatherproof boots that fit you well—not too big and not too small! In Ireland, we climbed cliffs, trekked through muddy, rocky, slippery areas, and scaled narrow castle stairs, so it was important for me to get a pair of boots that would keep my feet warm, protected, and dry. These can get pricey depending on the brand you purchase from but they’re well worth the money. Get one that fits snugly on your feet so you’re not waddling around if you have to climb rocky cliffs or anything like that.
4. A backpack or knapsack.
You’ll want to be able to carry around important items when you go on excursions, and I think that any cute, trendy little backpacks or drawstring bags are perfect for that. I got a little crossbody bag, but it didn’t really do much good since it was so small. I could only fit my wallet, phone, and any really small items. Which meant that most days, I didn’t bring a bottle of water with me if I didn’t want to bother my friend to hold it in his backpack for me—huge no-no! Always make sure you have a way of holding all your necessities in one place.
5. Your favorite no-fail stockings.
I didn’t pack any nice pairs of stockings because I didn’t think I’d wear any dresses or skirts since it might be cold in Ireland in January. But I realized that they were important to have when we had dressier events and gatherings. You don’t need to bring every pair of stockings Target has to offer, but make sure you bring one good pair that is versatile enough that you can pair it with any outfit.
6. A beanie or baseball cap.
Y’all, let me tell you: getting sick while traveling the world and making new experiences and memories is NOT fun. A lot of people in my study abroad group ended up getting so sick that they had to miss a day or two of really cool excursions and day trips. I was lucky enough to only catch a runny nose and slight headache for a few days, but even then it was torturous! Protect yourself from the weather by bringing appropriate hats, scarves, gloves, etc. It depends on where you’re going and the time of year, but if you know you’ll be in a cold environment, bring a hat that you can wear to cover your ears. If the climate is a little warmer, opt for a cap just in case.
(P.S., that’s me by the Cliffs of Moher with my eyes closed looking really stupid but nonetheless warm and cozy with my hat).
I really hope this post gave you some ideas as to what accessories will actually help you have a better travel experience! And I really hope you’ll take a look at StudentUniverse—I know I’m definitely going to take advantage of their opportunities while I can (and ya girl knows there are some major travel plans in the stars!). If you want to learn even more about StudentUniverse, come check them out at College Fashion Week, an event hosted by Her Campus to showcase the best fall trends word by real college gals like us (super excited!!!!). While I was unable to attend last year’s CFW, my friend did go and said she had a blast, so I’m certainly looking forward to the experience. Plus, it’s Her Campus, and if there’s anything I’ve learned after attending HerConference for two straight years, it’s that they know how to organize the BEST events EVER. The New York show is being held on Saturday, September 30, so if you’re available, come through! 😉
Are there any travel plans in the stars for you? Are you attending College Fashion Week?? Let me know!!