Traveling to Portland

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What to Bring

As your summer will involve a significant amount of air travel (see itinerary at the bottom of this page), we encourage you to pack as lightly as possible.  We have also planned a number of site visits and field trips, so please make sure you bring a small bag in addition to your regular suitcase.


Lightweight, Casual Clothing: Most people in Portland dress very casually. Most of the clothes you bring should be lightweight and comfortable. Students in the US normally wear shorts, t-shirts and sandals in the summer in order to stay cool. Jeans are also acceptable, but may be uncomfortable on hot days. Since temperatures tend to get cooler in the evening, we recommend you pack a sweater or light jacket.

Business and Formal Clothing: Although Portlanders typically dress very casually, you should also bring at least one semi-formal or professional outfit to wear to the more official events throughout the program. Men should wear a polo or long-sleeve shirts, and light-weight pants (khakis or chinos). Men are expected to wear neckties. Women should wear skirts, dresses or suit attire. You are welcome to wear traditional clothes at a formal dinner.

Shoes:  Your program requires a lot of walking outdoors in the cities. Therefore, you should bring at least one pair of comfortable walking shoes and a pair of comfortable tennis shoes or sneakers, as well as dress shoes for formal events.

In addition to the above, we encourage you to pack the following items:

  • Outdoor clothes (for camping)
  • Exercise clothes (you will have access to our gym)
  • Swimsuit
  • Travel alarm clock
  • A rain jacket or umbrella
  • Prescription medication (as needed)
  • Carry on size bag for short trips

Electrical Appliances

For electrical appliances (such as hairdryer, shaver, or laptop), please keep in mind that the U.S. uses alternating current, 60 cycles, 120 volts.  You will need to ensure that it is compatible or bring an adapter.


If you have any prescription medication, you should pack it in your carry-on bag while traveling at all times.  Also, if you are currently under a doctor’s care for any condition, you may want to bring a letter from your physician with details on your condition and treatment in case you need to see a doctor while in the U.S.

Flight Regulations

Checked Baggage: For most airlines, the weight limit for each piece of luggage is 22kg.  Anything OVER this restriction will be charged an overweight fee of about $50, which you will be required to pay.  We highly recommend that you pack your belongings in two medium-sized suitcases to check, each weighing less than 22kg.  If you expect to purchase items such as souvenirs to take home, please consider packing all your belongings in one suitcase and bringing an empty duffel bag or collapsible suitcase to fill later.  Any bottles of liquid that weight 3 or more ounces must be placed in your checked baggage.

Carry-ons: Airlines also allow passengers one carry-on bag and a personal item (purse or laptop case or small backpack) to keep with them aboard the plane.  You may want to pack one complete outfit in one of your carry-ons in case your checked baggage is delayed in transit.  Also, any prescription medication or bottles of liquid that weigh less than 3 ounces must be packed in a quart size Ziploc and/or clear/sealed plastic bag as part of your carry-on luggage.

For the most up-to-date travel information, please visit the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) website.

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