meesh’s study abroad essentials

With my flight about a week away I thought it was about time that I did a travel essentials post. Especially because when I announced I’d be traveling to England I promised some pre-trip posts. So here goes…

1. A cute, functional, relativity large and FULL ZIP everyday bag/purse:

From the get-go I was on the hunt for the perfect “everyday” bag for my trip. And of course because I didn’t want to break the bank I also wanted to get a really good deal at the same time.

The really important thing I was looking for was something with a full zipper and large enough to fit a decent amount of stuff in, including my camera…The reason I wanted a full zip was so that there would be less potential for someone to rob me on the streets. With a full zipper I can assure that my valuables will always be tucked away.

As some of you many know a few months ago, sometime in late October early Novemeber Kate Spade has this crazy 75% off sale (you had to like the Kate Spade on fb to access the link that took you to the sale). And I wasn’t really into it/ didn’t want to buy anything because I didn’t want to spend money. But it was coming up on my news feed a lot so eventually I decided to check it out.

And that is where I found this bag:

te3 te4Photos: The bag, Kate Spade (something similar)

I had originally wanted to find a bag that was like a luggage brown color but once I saw this and it’s price tag I was sold. I won’t disclose how much I actually paid but it was reguarly priced at over $400 and I got it for under $200. Which was an amazing deal.

Once I actually got it I fell even more in love, it’s plenty big, has a full zipper and cross-body strap, what more could a traveling girl ask for??

te8 te6 te5Photos: More of the bag, showing the interior

If you’re look for a good travel purse my tip is if you find anything under $200 with a full zipper, cross-body strap, and lots of space inside go for it. You may think you won’t need a crossbody strap but if you are doing lots of traveling and a bag like this will always be at your side your arms will get tired, especially if you’ve got a lot of stuff inside!

2. Passport Case

I feel that as a girl this is one of the things that you don’t necessary need but yet you have to have for style purposes. I didn’t go with anything expensive, in fact I picked mine up on sale, just something that will protect you’re passport and it’s pretty sturdy.

te7 te9Photos: The passport port case, Fossil

At first I wasn’t too crazy about the bright blue color, it’s wasn’t my first choice but there wasn’t much of a selection left…but it’s definitely growing on me. I’m beginning to like the fact that it is bright blue because it will make it easier to spot in the sea that is the inside of my purse.

3. Nice quality Camera

This was a must for me. It was at the top of my list of pre-trip purchases. As someone that grew up with a dad that was pretty into photography, I’ve always had a love of cameras. I’ve always prefered to behind the lense than in front of it.

I still remember when digital DSLR cameras came out and how big of a deal it was went we got one for my dad for Christmas years back. I think it was then that I decided that when it came time for me to get a really nice camera, that’s the one I would get.

So the camera I got was the Nikon D3300….

te15 te14Photos: The camera, aka my new baby

And I’ve already been taking countless photos to get some practice in and learn about the different features. I actually created a flickr account where I will be posting the majority of the photo of my trip at. To check out my flickr at: just_meesh and follow me to see all the photos I take while abroad.

p.s. my dad has also been really into my camera as well and bought all these filters and stuff for it…he likes to take photos of me while I’m eating or something and I don’t really know why….

4. Journal

This seems like something really simple but I think that keeping a journal is huge. It’s important to write things down and recount experiences through words because words will last you a lifetime, and it’s a really great way to document your travels.

I know that I’m going to make use of my journal and I’ve started by writing down my new years resolutions so that I can reaffirm them every time I open my journal and I’m also going to start a study abroad bucket list there too.

te10 te11Photos: My journal, I love the saying….“Paint The Town Red” Kate Spade

But, mostly I’ll use it to document my trip and for keeping random thoughts and epitomes too.

5. A good read

aka a book or too for long trips

I just think everyone needs that good read for a long plane, train or even bus ride. It helps pass the time and reading is just so good to do. I love to read so I know I definitely be taking a few books with me. I got a couple for Xmas and I’m really excited to get into them during my travels.

te13Photo: My books of choice: Wild & Game of Thrones book 1

6. Travel guide/s

Especially if you’ve never been to Europe like me, you’re probably going to want to get at least one travel book to have as a companion for your travels. My mom actually gave me a really good tip on travel guides and that’s to go to the library and rent a couple to see which you like best and then go buy the one that you liked most. That way you know exactly what you are getting.

te12Photos: The travel books I am checking out right now…really like Fodor’s England so far..

So I went to the library and picked up a bunch and have been skimming them to see which I take a liking too. Actually while I was skimming I came across another god tip which is to pick up a travel book once you get there because it will have a lot of good information about the local stuff and will include things that might not be in the big all encompassing guides books.

Of course this isn’t everything you will need for traveling but these 6 items where what I have found to be my big ticket items in terms of travel essentials.

te2It all fits perfect in my bag, even my agenda too.

Enjoy.

~meesh

p.s. leave a comment below if you have a question or like something you see!

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