Pre-Departure for Summer Study Abroad in Japan

Akina Obata
May 23, 2019

I am nervous, surprisingly. The past few months have been stressful, trying to get things done for study abroad, but now that things are finalizing, I’m feeling less stressed. At Nanzan University, I will be studying Japanese, so I have to prepare for that. I am worried about…everything! From figuring out train systems to making friends to being prepared for my classes! However, everything will probably be okay. It took a lot of work to get to this point, and yet it almost seems unreal. It has not hit me that I will be flying off in a plane to Japan soon. I do not travel a lot, much less alone, so this will be a new experience. Because of that, though, I am excited for this adventure!

[Some Japanese Translation from above: きんちょうしてます。南山大学で日本語を勉強をしますから、じゅんびをしないと。でもすべてきっと大丈夫になると思います。。もうすぐひこうきにのって、日本に行きます。あまり旅行をしないから、これはめずらしいです。でも、だから、楽しみにしてます!]

predeparture image

I know I should pack light, so here is my main list of things I’ll bring. My limit is two luggage bags.

  • I am packing almost a week and a half’s worth of clothes. I will probably want to buy clothes in Japan, so I do not want to pack up too much. I’m bringing a mix of semi-professional clothing and activewear.
  • Indoor workout shoes; in Japan, they have indoor gyms, but you need clean shoes for those, separate from outside shoes.
  • Toiletries
  • I still want to pack up a few gifts for friends and my host family—still working on that.
  • Laptop and laptop charger and we will possibly buy an adaptor. The voltage and plugins are different in Japan, so I have heard that sometimes you need an adaptor.
  • Phone and phone charger, earbuds
  • My study materials
  • My reusable stainless steel water bottle, straws, and utensils
  • You can pack skincare if you need certain products. I am bringing two skincare items, but Japan has really good skincare products you can try.  
  • Passport, wallet, insurance, and ID cards, etc.
  • Camera!

Other packing or preparation notes:

  • I heard that Japan’s makeup is mainly for native Japanese people, so they may not have other people’s color. Another thing I have heard is that Westerners often cannot find deodorant in Japan. This is likely because Japanese people often don't need deodorant. If makeup or deodorant is important to you, pack those up and bring them.
  • Japan has amazing stationery items, so no need to worry if you don’t have everything for your classes. I am excited to see the sketchbooks and drawing tools in Japan (I am a design student)!

I enjoy doing photography, and so I will continue to make blog posts with photos I will take on my journey.

Thanks for reading!

Akina Obata


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Akina Obata

<p>My name is Akina Obata and my major is Art and Design with a concentration of Animation and Film Media at North Carolina State University. I have been formally educated in photography and film, and I enjoy photography and photoshoots! I often practice my photography skills almost daily and love designing visual narratives.</p>

2019 Summer 1, 2019 Summer 2
Home University:
North Carolina State University
Newport, NC
Design - All Types
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