foreign-trained RNs

What Foreign-Trained RNs and Allied Clinicians Should Pack for the U.S.

foreign-trained RNs

You’re moving to the United States of America for at least three to four years. For a trip across the world, it’s very difficult to bring everything you have, so remember that you will purchase most items you need over time. To avoid paying for excess baggage fees, try and stick with the primary items – here’s a packing list to get you started!

In your purse, briefcase/carry-on baggage:

  1. Pack all of your important immigration documents – all originals should come with you
  2. School transcripts and diplomas
  3. International drivers license
  4. $1,000 (minimum) per individual for food and personal items until you start earning
  5. One change of clothing, in case there is any delays with suitcases
  6. Bedsheets and a light blanket are a must for arrival to settle in and sleep your initial night


In this day and age, there’s no end to technology. Want to read a book? Bring out your kindle. Want to listen to some upbeat songs to keep you entertained during that long flight? Pop in your headphones. Make sure to load your phone with reliable apps like a GPS, a currency converter, Uber and a finance management tool like Fudget.

  1. Laptop
  2. Cell phone that is compatible to change SIM for US number
  3. Headphones
  4. Chargers
  5. International converter

Footwear/Basic Clothing

This will be dependent on your location – in the majority of locations you will need layered clothing, winter gear and scrubs for work. Try to pick shoes that have multiple purposes – a comfortable pair of walking shoes/sneakers that can be worn with scrubs, a pair of formal shoes that go with most of your formal outfits. Pack basic items like a few tops and bottoms that you can mix-and-match, essential items like belt, socks, underwear and sleepwear. Always check the weather in the location you’re heading to – every state will have different weather conditions.

Personal Care

Bring the personal care items you currently use for skincare and showering with you; it’s nice to have the comfort of familiar items to start off with.

Most of the items you purchase in the U.S. may have different names or slightly different formulations, so it’s important for you to figure out what works best for you over time.

Health Care

Please note you will not have medical insurance or a prescription plan at your employer worksite for minimally 30-90 days, dependent on the offerings at each location. Please travel with at least three months’ supply of any prescriptions you regularly take. Without insurance, most pharmaceuticals are not affordable.

Carry on your regular medication, and do not pack in your suitcase as these can go missing. Be sure that any prescription medications are in their original bottle, and have your legal name (matching your passport) on the bottle. If you wear prescription glasses or contact lenses, make sure to carry an extra pair.

Are you considering working in the U.S. – or looking for an American Dream for your family? Email your resume now – with your cover letter of why you’d like to come to the U.S. – to:  [email protected]. We will review your experience and set up a personal Skype conversation.