Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Was soll ich packen?

Although Christiane’s email and the Handbook already talked about the ‘packing list’, we want to provide a few additional guidelines that might help you decide what bring along (or not). As usual, these are just recommendations – although each of us has spent significant time in Germany. ;-)

- The weather can vary from rainy and cold to very hot, so try to bring clothes that can be layered. Last year, we faced cooler weather in the beginning and people were wearing sweaters and light jackets. Although it might be unheard of for you due to the conditions here in Indiana, you might have to don a sweater in June!!! And a light rain jacket will keep you dry and warm.

- Bring some form of entertainment that you can enjoy on your own (iPod, book, drawing utensils) and with the group (cards, Frisbee, chess). There will be down-time when waiting for trains or flying in the plane (8+ hours) and it is a good opportunity to make friends and get to know everyone. Of course, German word games are always encouraged…

- When packing, roll your clothing to save space and avoid wrinkles.

- Carry your passport and money on you when travelling. We also recommend that you bring a print-out of your itinerary if you plan to travel to Chicago by plane. Domestic flights tend to charge for your luggage but if you can check it through to Düsseldorf, you might avoid these fees! More money to spend on souvenirs!

- Don’t overpack! You can only check one free piece of luggage (up to 44 lbs) and you will have to get it through customs (and to our bus). So, leave towels (too bulky!), bed sheets (won’t fit!), hair dryer (different voltage), and anything you can find in Germany at home. Also, somehow one always brings more things back…

- In addition to your instructors cell phone numbers, write down your host family’s address. You can show it to cab drivers should you have trouble communicating in German…

And finally, ‘pack’ a positive attitude, your curiosity, and sense of humor. ;-)

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