Packing Tips for Felicità: The Very Detailed List

Are you counting down the days until your 2024 Italy Choir tour starts in Rome? Let’s make sure you know what to pack. Here are all the items we consider essential to your upcoming Felicità experience. Mr. Hancock added choir-specific items to this very detailed packing list, too.

Clothing Essentials to bring along:

  • Rain jacket – fit for the season—for the summer, a lighter one.
  • If applicable: Complete Choir attire (extra dress shirt is recommended), shawls and music/scores
  • Two pairs of pants (jeans without excessive holes are fine, khakis are great, however—no sweat pants or sports leggings outside the gym); tailored shorts, ladies may also want to bring a few skirts or dresses 
  • Bring a sweater or two, if you tend to feel chilly. While it can be hot and humid at your destination, overnight flights are usually cold. 
  • There are plenty of shirts. We recommend polos over t-shirts and at least two dress shirts/blouses. Darker colors, prints, or florals are more forgiving than crisp whites.
  • Plenty of undergarments and socks for daily changes, and one extra pair of each just in case
  • Pajamas and a classy bathing suit (if you are planning to use the hotel pool)
  • Don’t forget your shoes! We recommend a maximum of three pairs (tennis shoes, good everyday shoes or sandals with rubber soles, and one pair of dress shoes). Make sure that you will be comfortable walking long distances. We suggest you DON’T bring flip-flops. Europeans do wear them, but only to the pool, spa or at the beach. Leaving your nicest pair of shoes at home would be wise. Walking along the prevalent cobblestone streets may ruin them, especially high heels.

Other Essentials to include:

  • Phone (with a recommended international data plan should it be used overseas) + charging cables and a European two-prong adapter for your plugs
  • Refillable water bottle. Why not personalize it with a sticker or a decal?
  • A watch (in case your phone runs out of battery)
  • Deodorant, cosmetics, toiletries, personal hygiene products, razors, and medication, and dryer sheets keep your clothes smelling fresh, too. 
  • Put all liquids (3.4 ounces max) in your carry-on into a one-quart zip-lock bag. And remember the 311 rules: TSA | Transportation Security Administration | 3-1-1 on Air Travel
  • Sharp items, such as scissors, fingernail clippers, etc., must be packed in your checked luggage along with liquids over 3.4 ounces. Bring enough contact lens solution and prescription medication for the entire duration of the trip.
  • Sheet music/black binder
  • Passport and printed copy of passport picture page (we don’t recommend bringing your US driver’s license unless you plan on renting a car)
  • Wallet/Money/Credit card/ATM card
    Students usually pay for one meal per day (usually lunch). Lunches generally cost between $20 and $25. You will also want to have around $80 for tips for drivers/guides.
  • European two-prong adapter for US plugs
  • Choir Outfit (tux/black dress) with shawls/scarves, don’t forget black socks
  • Garment bag optional, but it would need to fit into the large/checked suitcase

Some Things are Easily Replaced

If you forget something, most everyday items are easily replaced abroad. There are plenty of shops where you can buy shampoo, toothpaste, etc. However, we highly recommend that travelers bring all essential personal hygiene products with them as overseas items vary greatly and may be somewhat different, or perhaps even uncomfortable to use (deodorant, pads, tampons, etc.).

What essentials are generally provided at the hotels?

  • Soap, shampoo or shower gel, however, not necessarily conditioner. If you prefer bar soap, we suggest bringing yours along. Shower gel is the preferred choice for Europeans.
  • Towels
  • Blow dryer (however, usually not high-quality devices)

What we suggest NOT to bring:

  • Straighteners/Curling Irons (unless specifically approved for European usage at 220/240 Voltage)
  • Attire that can be considered disrespectful or overly patriotic
  • High heels (as they may not survive the cobblestone streets)
  • Expensive jewelry, family heirlooms
  • Gum (opt for mints instead)

Things You May Want to Bring from Home

An important part of traveling is to experience cultural differences. However, some adjustments to the local way of doing things may be more challenging than others. From our experience, here are the top five things to bring from home when visiting Europe:

  • A washcloth or two, as they are not common in most parts of Europe (and bar soap if you prefer) 
  • Ziplock bags of various sizes
  • Second set of charging cables for your most used electronic items
  • Back-up battery pack (with cables attached) 
  • Ear plugs (if you or your roommate snores)
  • A lightweight or foldable duffel bag (that fits into your checked bag) is a must. It’ll come in handy for dirty laundry or fragile souvenirs.

We wish you a safe journey to Europe.
Remember to leave some space in your suitcase for souvenirs and other treasures you may find while exploring those beautiful destinations. ‘Helping’ the local economy is always appreciated.