How to pack for a year in Madrid

It is that time of year where all you new auxiliares are preparing for the big move to Spain. You have spent months dreaming about it and you are almost there, but there is still something very crucial that you need to do, you need to pack. Not only pack, but pack all the right things and leave the wrong things at home. After having done the big move three times (twice to Spain and once to Italy) myself I have learned some packing tips along the way. So, how do you pack your life into a suitcase? I have already written a post about packing, so check it out for more tips. 


Pack less than you think you need.

My favourite shops Zara and Mango are way cheaper in Spain than the UK. You too will probably fall in love with them, especially after Christmas when all the clothes shops have rebajas (sales). You will probably buy a lot of new things, because you will either pack the wrong clothes or you will get bored with your clothes. This brings me to my next tip.

Basics are your best friend. 


A cream jumper isn’t recognisable

Basic tops, jumpers (sweaters), skirts and jeans should all be packed in your case. Remember you have a weight limit and the majority of that should be used to pack your essential basics. Forget filling your entire case with bright, colourful and very memorable clothing. Remember that a lot of photos will be taken by you and of you, the last thing you want is people to think ‘oh she is wearing that dress again’. 

Pack accessories.

Since most of your clothes are basics you will need a variety of accessories to dress them up and to create different looks. I like to use scarves or hats and they don’t weigh a lot.



The same top two very different looks.

2015-03-06 13.29.26


Ladies leave those heels at home apart from one pair. Honestly you will hardly wear them. I didn’t even wear mine this year, which means they took up valuable suitcase space.

There are a lot of reasonable priced shoe shops in Spain, so you don’t need to bring an entire shoe collection.


If you have big feet try to pack extra shoes. I have known a few people (men and women) who have had problems finding shoes to fit them if they have big feet. To save yourself the trouble of hunting down a shoe shop that carries your size.

Pack appropriate summer clothes. 

When you first arrive it will be hot and you will want to enjoy it before it cools down. The problem is that you start work when it’s still hot and towards the end of the school year it will heat up again. This means that you need appropriate summer clothes for work and not just to wear in your free time. I made this mistake and I had to wear jeans in 30 degree heat, which isn’t fun!



I hope these tips helped. Do you have any other tips to add? Pop a comment below. 



Do want to read more posts about moving abroad/Madrid or about being an auxiliar? Check these out

6 Things to do before moving abroad

6 Tips for finding an apartment in Spain

Packing tips: learning from Spanish mistakes

5 Things they don’t tell you before becoming a BEDA auxiliar

Lesson plan ideas for auxiliares teaching ESO

4 Ways Spanish schools fail at using auxiliares


One response to “How to pack for a year in Madrid

  1. Pingback: Monthly Roundup: August | sunshine and Lorena·

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