Pack These Dorm Essentials for Move-In Day
There’s a lot to think about as students prepare for their first year of college, and one of the most difficult things to manage is what to bring! You may not know what you’ll need, and odds are, you will probably forget something.
If you live close to home your parents can make another trip to bring your forgotten items. However, if you’re far from home, you might have to make a few extra trips to the local shops – and that can get expensive.
Before heading to campus, make sure you have all your dorm essentials – including some things you might not have thought about. Here are some packing must-haves for college-bound students.
For your bed:
Of course you know you need sheets and a comforter, but there are some items you might not realize you need. You should buy extra long twins sheets, to be sure that they fit your bed.
A foam mattress topper will be a lifesaver. It’s a great investment and you’ll be much more comfortable. Also, bring an extra blanket. You never know if the heating will break during the winter, or maybe your room will be drafty. It’s always best to prepare for unforeseeable situations.
Bed risers aren’t essential, but in a tiny dorm room, space is everything! Bed risers allow you a little more room under your bed, and you might appreciate the extra storage.
For your room:
There are a lot of things that you will need for your room, and decorations and pictures are obvious. A lot of dorm rooms are small and dark, do extra lighting and back-up light bulbs are a must. A floor lamp will help brighten up the room, and a desk lamp will be necessary for studying.
For organization and storage:
Making use of all your space will be important to stay organized and sane. Bring under-the-bed storage bins and over-the-door hangers for extra storage space. You’ll be glad to have the extra space. Space bags are also helpful, especially if you live far away. They will allow you to put your winter, or summer, clothes away when they are not in-season, without taking up too much space. Even if you’re not too short, a step stool is a good thing to have around. If you get one that folds, you can leave it in the back of your closet, and only use it when you need it.
Maybe this is your first time doing your own laundry (you’re not alone!). Of course you’ll need the essentials like a hamper and detergent. If you have clothes that can’t be put in the dryer, it might be a good idea to bring a drying rack. It’s much better than drying clothes flat on your desk (and if that’s what you’re using your desk for, you may want to consider spending some extra time at the library).
Another great thing that many people forget is a small emergency sewing kit. It’s unlikely that you will have to use it that often, but when a button falls off your suit the night before a big interview, you’ll be glad to have it. Make sure it’s stocked with safety pins too; they always come in handy.
You’ll still need all the usual items that you’ve needed every year since kindergarten, but classes in college require some different items as well. A laptop, for starters, is essential. You’ll be glad if you get one that isn’t too heavy, you’ll probably need to carry it all over campus.
Binders and notebooks with pockets and separate sections are a huge help. There may be times when you have a few extra minutes to do homework, and you’ll be glad you keep all your documents in one place.
A flash drive, or a few, will come in handy. You will likely be working on more group projects or presentations than you have in the past, and this helps you share the work. Also, it’s always good to back-up big papers or projects as you work on them; you never know what could happen to your computer.
You may not think you need a printer, but get one. You will be able to print things out on campus, but when you don’t have to walk to the library before your 8 a.m. class when your final paper is due, you’ll be glad you have your own.
For your closet:
Bring plenty of hangers for your closet. It may be a small space, but chances are you’ll need all of it to hang our clothes.
Not all rooms have a full-length mirror, so, if this is important to you, throw it in.
Apart from the standard t-shirts, shorts, pants, and sweaters, there are a few more things you’ll definitely want in your closet. Rain boots are a great thing to have, especially if you are going to school in an area with a rainy climate. Always have an umbrella and rain jacket on hand.
You may need several different kinds of jackets, like a big winter coat, and the further north you go to school, the more you need. If you are not from the area and are unsure of the year-round climate, check the weather online or talk to an older student. They have a better idea of the must-haves to survive the weather near your school.
Also, it is likely that you will have a job interview on campus at some point during your four years at college, so make sure you bring some professional or business casual attire.
Leave these at home:
Depending on your dorm’s rules, there may be items that are not allowed. It’s best to check ahead of time to see what is and is not permitted. Some often-restricted items are mini fridges, microwaves, coffee makers, electric teakettles, hanging Christmas lights, extension cords, toasters, and candles. Many colleges provide students with a list of restricted items ahead of move-in day, so be sure to check ahead of time if you are planning on bringing any of these or other questionable items.
Do you have any other ideas for college must-haves? Comment below!