Packing List

This list has been compiled by Volunteers serving in-country and is based on their experience. Use it as an informal guide in making your own list, bearing in mind that each experience is individual. There is no perfect list! You obviously cannot bring everything on the list, so consider those items that make the most sense to you personally and professionally. You can always have things sent to you later. As you decide what to bring, keep in mind there is a 100-pound weight limit on baggage. And remember, you can get almost everything you need in-country.

Baggage & weight limit: The Peace Corps limits the size and weight of baggage and will not pay to transport baggage that exceeds these limits. The allowance is two checked pieces of luggage with combined dimensions of both pieces not to exceed 107 inches (length + width + height) and a carry-on bag with dimensions of no more than 45 inches. Checked baggage should not exceed 100 pounds total with a maximum weight of 50 pounds per bag.

Peace Corps Volunteers are not allowed to take pets, weapons, explosives, radio transmitters (shortwave radios are permitted), automobiles, or motorcycles to their assignments. Do not pack flammable materials or liquids such as lighter fluid, cleaning solvents, hair spray, or aerosol containers.

General Clothing

Bring comfortable, professional-looking clothes that are appropriate for many occasions and can be layered according to the weather. (Note that you are expected to dress professionally during training.) Because you may be wearing the same clothes for two years, quality is more important than quantity. It is culturally acceptable in Ukraine to have a small wardrobe, so do not overpack. Clothes should be wrinkle-free (polyester-cotton blends are recommended), easy to clean, and dark-colored as you are likely to be washing your clothes by hand. It is possible to buy clothes in Ukraine, but selection and sizes are limited. One option is to have clothes custom-made, which is not as costly as it is in the United States. 

  • Long coat for spring and fall and possibly a light jacket
  • Full-length winter coat or parka with lining (down is recommended)
  • Mix-and-match clothes for layering, such as solid-color turtlenecks
  • Lightweight and heavyweight sweaters
  • Gloves or mittens, preferably wool; glove liners (available locally)
  • Hats
  • Long thermal underwear (cotton or silk)
  • Wool or Lycra-wool blend socks
  • Casual clothes: jeans, walking shorts, T-shirts, turtlenecks
  • Bathing suit
  • Sports and fitness clothing, such as jogging pants (shorts are inappropriate in most places but can be worn in a gym or when running in a stadium)

For Men

  • One suit for professional occasions
  • Slacks for business casual wear; khakis or cords with a blazer and tie are acceptable in schools and universities
  • Shirts for professional wear
  • Jackets
  • Ties

For Women

  • One suit for professional occasions
  • Variety of slacks for different seasons
  • Blouses/button-down shirts
  • Durable stockings/tights (available in Ukraine, though not in all sizes)
  • Your usual accessories


  • Comfortable and durable work shoes (you will be doing a lot of walking), which are not easy to find in Ukraine
  • Warm, waterproof boots that are dressy enough to wear with work clothes and large enough to wear with warm socks (although boots are available in Ukraine, large sizes for women may be difficult to find)
  • Heavy-duty sandals (e.g., Tevas or Chacos)
  • Athletic shoes
  • Slippers (you will wear these a lot, as Ukrainians remove their shoes as soon as they walk in the door)
  • Lightweight ice grips that can be worn over shoes or boots, when walking on snow and ice

Personal Hygiene and Toiletry Items

Unless you have to have specific brands, you can get almost everything you need—e.g., shampoo, conditioner, lotion, shaving cream, toothpaste, antiperspirant, hair spray, coloring products, razors—in Ukraine. Things to consider bringing:

  • Two pairs of eyeglasses, if you wear them; also consider bringing a repair kit 
  • Two-year supply of contact lens solutions (the Peace Corps does not provide supplies for contacts)
  • Three-month supply of any prescription medication, vitamins, or supplements you take
  • Makeup (also available in Ukraine if you are not particular about brands)
  • Start-up supply of feminine hygiene products (widely available in stores, bazaars, and kiosks, but  it may take some time to determine where to get what you want)
  • Hand cream (also available in Ukraine)
  • Hand sanitizer that does not require water (also available in Ukraine)
  • Foot aids such as pads for corns, if you have tender feet
  • Spot remover or Woolite (for clothes that need special care)
  • Fabric refresher or odor remover (e.g., Febreze)
  • Tweezers
  • Nail clipper, emery boards
  • Dental floss (also available in Ukraine)


You can easily buy most kitchen supplies in Ukraine. There are a few items, however, that you might consider bringing:

  • Basic cookbook (bring a vegetarian cookbook if you prefer vegetarian dishes); a cookbook of dishes that can be prepared from locally available products will be provided to you
  • Favorite recipes
  • Measuring cups and spoons with both metric and nonmetric markings
  • Oven thermometer
  • Good vegetable peeler
  • Artificial sweetener (sugar and honey are available)
  • Twist ties
  • Plastic storage bags (one-quart and one-gallon freezer bags are best)
  • Favorite seasonings, such as Tabasco sauce, vanilla, Old Bay, cloves, taco spices, cumin, cayenne pepper, and chili powder (many basic spices are available locally)
  • Favorite foods, such as chocolate chips, peanut butter, maple syrup, popcorn, and gravy and salad dressing mixes


  • MP3 player, thumb drive
  • Laptop computer or a tablet with a good surge protector; if you bring one, be sure to insure it
  • Digital camera
  • Durable, water-resistant, and inexpensive watch, with an alarm if possible; an extra battery is also useful
  • Reliable alarm clock that runs without electricity
  • Small but powerful flashlight, perhaps one that attaches to a key chain (can be bought in Ukraine)
  • Favorite music, movies, and workout videos
  • Appliances—buying them locally may eliminate the need to bring a voltage converter; items such as irons, blow dryers, and stereos are available at reasonable prices


  • Medium-sized daypack for weekend travel
  • Sturdy water bottle
  • Umbrella (available in Ukraine)
  • Neck wallet or money belt (it is safest to carry your money and passport on your person) 
  • Sewing kit (with safety pins)
  • Sleeping bag with stuff sack for traveling in cold weather
  • Fleece throw/lap blanket for cold nights
  • Musical instruments (if you play)
  • Copies of all financial and personal documents, such as a power of attorney, university transcripts and/or diplomas, birth certificates, passport, and credit cards
  • Books and/or e-readers (i.e. Kindle or iPad)
  • Teaching materials (for education Volunteers), such as markers, chalk, erasers, magazines, simple children’s books, and American music; you can also pack items for someone to ship to you later
  • Interesting wall decorations (maps, posters, etc.)
  • Swiss Army knife with corkscrew or Leatherman tool
  • Duct tape
  • Photos of home to show your host family, students, friends, and colleagues (These provide a great introduction for your host family.)
  • Games such as Scrabble, cards, Frisbee, Uno, Nerf football
  • Quick-drying travel towel (available at and washcloths
  • Day planner
  • Graduate study materials (e.g., GRE, LSAT), as applicable
  • Suntan lotion (selection of brands here is limited)
  • Note and greeting cards
  • If you plan to travel to other countries for vacation, you may want to bring extra money to suit your travel plans; credit cards or traveler's checks are preferable to cash. There are ATMs in larger cities, and most towns so you may want to bring an ATM card to access a bank account in the U.S.
  • Small gifts for host family and friends (not required); knickknacks for the house; pictures, books, or calendars of American scenes; souvenirs from your area; hard candies that will not melt or spoil; photos to give away