Change is a Good Thing

Written by Kate November 6, 2018

Most students who decide to take the leap into an entirely new country and culture would agree that change is a good thing. As the semester surges forward, the confidence, growth, and cultural understanding becomes more evident in every individual at CIMBA. We have just completed the first travel weekend, and everyone was ecstatic to see more of Europe. While the students in Paderno del Grappa have acclimated well to the culture of Italy, there are a few amenities from home that I am glad to have with me during my travels. The products I’m most grateful to have taken across the world with me are as follows:

  1. Dual voltage hair styling appliances- Different countries have different electrical currents, and not all appliances from home will work in Italy. There is an array of dual voltage hair styling tools that can be found in beauty stores or on online sites like Amazon. Because the voltage differs from country to country, it is important to make sure that you have a tool that is compatible with your adaptor for different countries. My straightener has worked wonderfully in Italy and Germany, as well as in Denmark and Amsterdam where we visited over the extended travel weekend.
  2. Venmo- While Venmo is an app, and not a tangible possession, this is one of the most important things to have on your mobile device for your time abroad. When traveling with a group, it is easier to make reservations under the name of one person for flights and lodging. Additionally, restaurants in Italy generally do not allow people to split the tab, and this is more convenient than carrying a lot of cash.
  3. Over the counter medications- The medications available in pharmacies in Italy tend to be weaker than those in the United States. If you are worried about a cold or headache, it is a good idea to pack yourself your favorite brand of cough drops or some extra ibuprofen. The nurse on campus generally has a few medications in stock if you need them, so don’t worry too much if you forget.
  4. A zippered cross-body purse or satchel- This is not only convenient for carrying when you are spending days on your feet walking around a new city, but it helps to ensure the safety of your money and possessions. The best kind of bags to hold cash in also have a zipper or travelers lock.

There is nothing more exciting during a semester abroad than beginning to see the changes in your views and your mindset. This kind of change is an incredible process to be taking part in. If you forget something, there are plenty of stores in Italy that carry similar brands or offer great substitutes. That being said, there’s nothing better than having some of the most useful comforts of home with you along the journey.