What to bring & What not To Bring

Once your ready to come to the United States, deciding what to bring with you and what to leave at home is crucial!

We recommend making a packing list with the most important items in advance to make sure that you don’t forget anything. If you do forget something in your home country, you can most likely buy it once you come to the United States!

Important Documents

It is important that you bring all essential documents, and copies of them too, to ensure you have no problems traveling to the United States! We also recommend bringing some cash to use during your travels for food and anything you see along the way.

  • Passport and Visa
  • Flight Itinerary
  • Health Insurance Card
  • USD Cash and Credit/Debit card
  • DS2019 form
  • Participation letter
  • SEVIS payment receipt
  • Contact information for Agent Au Pair, host family, and Local Rep
  • Medical Kit and prescription medication


We recommend bring clothes that are versatile, comfortable and appropriate to wear. Bringing clothing items that you can wear in multiple outfits will make it easier to pack! You want to make sure that the clothes you bring are appropriate to wear while taking care of your host children. Whether your feeding infants, playing outside and doing crafts with 6 year olds, or taking older children on an adventure, you want to make sure you have practical and comfortable clothing for any occasion!

Do some research on the weather of the area you will be living and make sure to pack clothes appropriately. You don’t want to bring only shorts if you are going to be living in a place that gets cold!

  • Jeans
  • T-shirts
  • Cardigans
  • Casual Dresses and Semi-formal dresses
  • Sneakers and flip flops
  • Multi-functional jacket

Toiletries and Medicine

Make sure you pack enough of your prescription medications, should you need any, to cover the duration of your stay. Seeing a doctor in your host country might be expensive, even if you have a health insurance.

  • Your favorite travel-sized toiletries. The travel size will help you save space and you can always buy new products in the United States
  • Medication – any medication that you take on a regular basis
  • Tooth brush
  • Make up
  • Deodorant
  • If you wear them: enough contact lenses and solution for the length of your stay
  • Shampoo and Conditioner
  • Face Wash

Additional Items

  • Electronic devices (laptop, camera, chargers etc.)
  • Adapter for your electronic devices
  • Present for your host family
  • An extra pair of glasses or contact lenses
  • Photos of your family and friends at home
  • Some sweets or other food of your home country you don’t want to go without for an entire year
  • Hat
  • Sun glasses
  • Address book
  • Small dictionary

Don’t be afraid to reach out to your host family and ask for recommendation on what you should bring. They will be able to give you tips on which clothes will be appropriate for the area of the United States you are traveling to and it’s weather conditions. We recommend leaving extra space in your luggage for your trip home. You will most likely buy items in the United States that you will want to be back to your home country.