London to Ireland (approx. one hour 15 minutes)
If you choose to study abroad in Europe, the majority of the flights that you will take will be pretty short, like the 75 minute flight from London to Cork or the hour and 45 minute flight from London to Copenhagen. For a flight this length, there are only a few main essentials. You’re best off keeping it simple and sticking to the necessities.
- Headphones – You should really have headphones on you at all times, whether you’re riding the tube or walking to a café. It’s like having a soundtrack to your life.
- Gum – It always helps with your ears popping during takeoff and landing.
- A bottle of water – It’s always good to stay hydrated and the cost of drinks on-board is always much higher than at the airport.
- Chapstick – Flying is notorious for drying out your skin, so pack Chapstick to avoid inevitable dry lips.
- Hand sanitizer – This is another thing that I try to have on me at all times because germs are everywhere (especially on public transportation and planes), and there are some pretty gross statistics on the bacteria found in airplane bathroom water.
And that’s all. Don’t over prepare yourself with magazines and books that you’ll never read for a flight this quick.
London to Rome (a little less than 3 hours)
For something a little longer, bring all of your short flight essentials along with two more additions.
- Snacks – There’s nothing worse than being hit with a sudden snack craving and having to pay for overpriced chips and peanuts on board.
- Magazine – The perfect time to immerse yourself in a junky tabloid is when you’re over listening to your plane playlist for the 5th time.
Long Bus Ride (also known as your worst nightmare)
London to Amsterdam (over 8 hours)
Oh, MegaBus, paying only $20 for a bus ticket seems so worth it until that moment when you’re six hours in and on the verge of losing your mind. The bus is long, cramped and between border control and taking a ferry over the channel, you never sleep as much as you planned. With that being said, it’s usually by far the cheapest option and often allows you more time at your destination than if you took a plane. Along with all of the other flight essentials, bring the following to make MegaBus a little less unbearable:
- Big blanket scarf – Blanket scarves are a Godsend for many reasons, on the bus they’re best use is as a blanket or a pillow for your neck.
- Neck pillow – While a scarf will suffice, those donut neck pillows are definitely a bonus.
- Phone charger – Most buses come equipped with a USB charger, you’ll need to charge up after a couple of hours on the bus.
- Wear comfy clothes – And girls, wear a sports bra or bralette.
- Glasses – If you wear contacts, opt for glasses on the bus.
- Lots of snacks and water – This bus ride can go on for over eight hours after all.