List of things to take to USA

The following are a list of items I suggest that one brings to USA if they are going for a duration > 6 months. While going through the post, remember it might not be a complete list and also that if you miss out any of these, they are easily available in the US. To make it easy, I have listed down an approximate cost of item in US.

  1. Umbrella. (5$ to 15$ )
  2. The work laptop with all accessories including an adaptor for US Plug Points. (Get an additional adaptor. They are worth around 5$ here )
  3. Pressure cooker + 1 tava + 1 pan. All should be flat bottomed heating method could be Coil Based and not necessarily Gas. Get a chapathi rolling pin. And two additional rubber, safety valve for pressure cooker. (A 3L pressure cooker costs 40$. And a safety valve costs 5$ )
  4. If you want steel utensils, bring them from India as they are very expensive here. A small serving bowl costs 4$. But if you are fine with ceramic variety mugs\plates, they are available for a lot lesser than in India.
  5. Micro Wave Safe tiffin Box. A nice one that serves the purpose can be around 10-15$ here.
  6. Kitchen masala – Lots of famous brands are available here but if you are specific about what masala you want, bring it from India as local varieties are not available here. Some brands that are available are: Baadhshah, Everest, MDH, Nirappara, Haldirams, Eastern, Deep, Swad etc.
  7. Get any speciality utensils that you might need – like idli maker or puttu maker. They are all available here but a small Puttu Maker is 10$. Idli Utensils can easily cost 20$ and above.
  8. If you are a coffee or a tea person, bring 2 or 3 packets of your favorite brand as it is a bit expensive here. ( 200gms of Bru Instant Coffe Powder = 6$)
  9. If you are fond of homemade pickles, bring them from India. Most of the brands are available here for 3$ and above. Oil – can be bought here.
  10. Do not bring rice, grains, cereals etc as they r not allowed on flight. They are also cheaper here and will simply add weight to your luggage.
  11. Footwear – most homes are carpeted and dont need home slippers. Bring one summer wear sandals and one running shoe. You can bring formal shoe if your office demands it. Decent footwear usually cost 15$ and above.
  12. Socks – get at least 5 pairs. ( Each pair costs around 1$-2$, so it can be bought here too )
  13. Clothes – check about dress code at client site and plan accordingly
  14. Bring at least 2 pairs of Indian clothes. Lots of Indian functions festivities around.
  15. Thermal wear if you are travelling to a cold place.
  16. For the clothes – the laundry is usually done once in a week. So plan to bring that many sets of clothes. Indian Clothes tend to get spoilt within 3 months or so. They either shrink or fade.
  17. Bring any cosmetics that you might need. Lots of good cosmetics are available here too but not the specific brands.
  18. Keep a spare set of clothes in your carry bag. Sometimes the luggage arrives late. Keep a small travel kit ready.
  19. Medicines – bring antibiotics, Crocin, allergy meds, pain relief medicine, vicks, zandu baam etc whatever you need or you might need, get doctors prescriptions for them too.
  20. Get a complete dental checkup, do a cleanup and fix anything that needs fixing. Dental issues cost heaven and earth here even with a good insurance policy. Do not travel till all tooth issues are fixed. (My Husband recently spent 1500$ from his own pocket on an emergency root canal. His insurance pays 80% of charges)
  21. Get an eye checkup. If you have power, bring at least 3 different pairs of glasses. Reading Glasses, Travelling Glasses, Spare Glasses. (Spectacles cost around 100$ and above.)
  22. Bring good quality Sunglasses. They are available here too but you might not wish to go shopping as soon as you land here.
  23. Bring 4 pillow covers and 4 plain bedsheets. I would suggest you buy the blankets here.
  24. Carry travel pack of following in handbag Toothpaste, toothbrush, comb, small soap, small talc – in case you have a long airport wait or wish to freshen up somewhere.
  25. Iron for the clothes (They are available for 12$ onwards. So it is your choice whether you wish to buy it here or bring it from India)
  26. At least 4 recent passport size pics. (You may not really need them but if u do, they are expensive. 2 photos for 9$)
  27. Get any photos of god, holy books, idols etc that you might need. Get calendar if you wish to keep track of stars and moons etc.
  28. Additionally, if u are staying at hotel till you find accommodation, bring a few of those instant MTR curries as after a 20hour flight you would crave Indian Food.
  29. Spare Ear phone\Head phone. (I lost mine today and it seems to cost 7$ and up). And while you are at it, get an additional USB charger for your phone.
  30. Water bottle – You will have to shell out around 5$ for a decent water bottle in the US.

Additionally, a software engineer who earns around 35000INR per month in India would be earning around 3500$ in the USA. So essentially, based on salary comparison 1$ would weigh down on his purse as much as 10INR in India. Converting everything by the Dollar to INR conversion rate is simply not worth the trouble.

5 Comments

  1. Shalady,good post!! You have lots of patience BTW! small correction, it should be “iron” instead of “iron box”. Otherwise it would mean a box made of iron!! 🙂

    • Thank You Deepu Sir. I have rectified the error. I was a bit hesitant as both ‘Iron’ and ‘Iron Box’ could mean different things. 🙂

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