So you are planning on going to Ireland? Great! I loved my time there. However, some things I brought just stayed in my closet the entire time and took up pointless room in my suitcase. So here’s how to not do that.
I brought 6 sweaters with me. I knew Ireland was going to be cold and I wanted to be prepared. One of them I only wore once and another two only wore a few times. So I only wore 3 consistently. So you will not need 6 sweaters. Only bring 2 or 3 and that should be enough.
I brought 4 ¾ length shirts, all different colors. These are the things I wore the most. It was nice because they weren’t long but they still covered a lot of my arms. I also took 2 t-shirts that reminded me of home: 1 Royals shirt and 1 Kansas Jayhawk shirt. Those were nice for the days when I was feeling homesick or just wanted to show off my state.
I brought a pair of heels, a pair of booties, a pair of flats and two pairs of tennis shoes. In Europe, no matter what part you are in, you do a lot of walking. It was a mile from my house in Plassey Village to the Health Science Building on the far side of campus. There was no way I was going to be wearing my booties on those days. I brought the heels for times when I was going to dress up and go out. For me, that didn’t happen too often and, as previously stated, you do a lot of walking. From my house to the closest pub was a half mile and I was not going to be doing that in heels.
I would recommend taking just a nice pair of dressy flats for those special occasions. Also, get a really nice pair of tennis shoes. I ended up throwing my main pair of tennis shoes I wore away when I got home because they were so worn out. Keep in mind that I had bought those shoes just for Ireland, so it only took 4 months to wear them completely out.
I brought a pea coat, a winter coat, and a rain jacket. These three I wore a lot. I didn’t necessarily need the pea coat, I mainly brought that so I could look nice. It was warm though so it did serve that purpose. I wore my winter coat a lot, just because it was super warm and rain and wind resistant. To be honest, it wasn’t even the fanciest winter coat in the world either. It was just a $15 winter coat from WalMart. So don’t think that you need to buy the nicest, prettiest thing because a $15 winter coat from WalMart will do the job. While at school, I bought a University of Limerick sweatshirt which I also wore a lot.
YOU NEED A RAINCOAT! This is not a joke. You are going to a country where it rains a lot. When it rains, it doesn’t just rain, the wind is also blowing really hard. This is why I recommend buying a coat with a hood over an umbrella. I cannot tell you how many broken umbrellas I saw on the side of the sidewalk that first week of classes. They don’t work in Ireland. It’s just too windy. You don’t even see the Irish use them, everyone just has a rain jacket. Also, if the forecast doesn’t show rain, don’t believe it. Always have your raincoat with you.
I made the mistake one time of going to campus without mine in my backpack and the last 5 minutes of my walk home, it poured. I was completely soaked. Point is, buy a nice raincoat and always have it because it will rain. I promise.