University of Vermont

Packing for Travel

Packing Tips

Don't pack too much. The urge of many people moving overseas is to try and pack as much as they possibly can in their suitcases. Not only will you have to carry your suitcases yourself, but generally, you will get a better sense of what you actually need once you arrive. This is particularly true for winter clothing. If necessary, your family can always mail you a box (and boxes from home are always fun to receive) or you can pick up what you need during your next trip home. In addition, you can purchase what you need once you get here. Not only will we take a shopping trip during orientation week, but you can easily get to local shopping areas by bus or on foot.

What you don't need to bring. We will provide your bed with sheets, a pillow, a pillowcase, a blanket and a comforter. We will also provide you a towel. They are yours to keep.


Suitcases are often delayed and may arrive after you. You can help make sure that your suitcases make it to you as soon as possible by putting your UVM address (see below) on your luggage. It’s also a good idea to take some basic toiletries and your valuables and important documents with you on board the plane in case your bag is delayed or lost. Finally, please do not lock your suitcase. It will be opened for security inspections.

UVM Address:
University of Vermont
USPP Summer Bridge Program
University Heights South
Burlington, VT USA 05405


The fashion in Vermont and on campus is generally casual and informal. Most students will wear jeans, T-shirts, slacks, shirts and sweaters, casual jackets, etc. You should plan on bringing at least one nice outfit, although formal occasions are not common.

Dressing for the Seasons

Vermont has four seasons: spring, summer, fall and winter so you will need to have clothing for all of these seasons.

The summer is mild to moderately warm (18-22 degrees Celsius on average) with usually a few hot days or weeks in July and August where temperatures can range around 30 degrees Celsius. Plan to bring a swimming suit as there are many local beaches to visit when you want to cool off.

The spring and fall are both very pleasant and mild with temperatures ranging from 6-14 degrees Celsius, but you should be prepared for rainy periods. You will need a light-to medium heavy jacket. A rain coat and/or umbrella are also recommended.

Winter officially stretches from late December to late March, but you will find that winter temperatures can begin earlier and last later than this. During the coldest months of December through February, the temperatures range from around -5 to -9 degrees Celsius with temperatures sometimes dipping even lower for short periods. If you don’t yet own a winter coat, hat and gloves, you may want to wait to purchase them until you arrive in Vermont. A pair of insulated and waterproof boots is also highly recommended. The Office of International Education (OIE) staff can direct you to inexpensive places to buy good quality winter coats and give you tips for successful winter dressing. To stay warm, people will often layer clothes — for example, a long-sleeved tee shirt under a sweater, with a jacket on top. That way as it warms up during the day, you can remove any layers you don’t need. Moreover, if you bring clothes you can layer, then you don’t need to bring as much and clothes that you wear in spring and fall can easily be layered for winter temperatures.

Mementos from Home

It can be important to bring some things from home to the U.S. Photos of friends and family and a few familiar and meaningful objects that have positive memories attached to them can make you feel more at home and will have extra special meaning when you begin to miss home. In addition, you may want to consider bringing small, inexpensive souvenirs from your home country to give as gifts.

Electrical Equipment and Household Items

Electrical equipment and appliances from abroad use a different electrical current and have different electrical plugs than in the U.S., so it is a good idea to leave your small appliances (hair dryer, etc) at home and purchase new or used ones upon arrival. You may be able to use some devices in the US with the proper plug/currency converter. Most basic household items for your dorm room can be purchased relatively inexpensively at local shops, or discount and second-hand (slightly used) stores.

Mobile Phones

If you plan to have a mobile phone in the U.S. and you already own one, see if you your phone would take a SIM card that would allow you to use your phone in the U.S. Alternatively, buying a new phone in the U.S. and getting a U.S. service provider might be less expensive.


If you can’t fit everything you need into your bags, your family can ship you anything else you need. Please note that your boxes cannot arrive before you do, so please plan accordingly. Your shipping address for the summer will be sent to you with your acceptance materials.

Last modified April 27 2012 06:02 AM

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