You’re off to college. You’re about to start a brand new chapter in your life; one you’ve been anticipating for years. However, before you go, you have the job of sorting through all of your worldly belongings to figure out what you’ll need to help you survive an entire academic year on your own. There’s no doubt about it; packing for college is tough.
If you’ve never previously lived away from home for an extended period of time (summer camp doesn’t count, unfortunately) then knowing exactly what you need to bring with you to live independently is pretty much like a guessing game. Thankfully, you can find many helpful “what to bring to college” guides online, which help to give a clearer idea what to pack for your big move. However, we understand that there’s not always a one-size-fits-all type checklist for every single student; after all, everyone’s college experiences and views on what may or may not be an “essential item” are always going to be totally different.
In a bid to give you a more practical approach to your packing, we’ve put together a list of things you absolutely DON’T need to bring with you to college. That way, you can narrow down all of your belongings to the real necessities and save some space in your luggage.
And don’t forget; if you arrive at college and realise you have, in fact, left something particularly important behind; college shipping services such as Uni Baggage can have it delivered to you super quickly and at a low cost.
Your entire reading list
It may come as a surprise for the naive freshman, but not all of the textbooks on your recommended reading list are actually worth purchasing. Not before classes actually begin, anyway. Academic textbooks are painfully expensive, not to mention the fact that they’ll take up a lot of your luggage space. Instead of rushing in and buying all of them in one go and regretting it later; wait until classes start and decide from there which ones you absolutely need to purchase. That said, don’t forget, you can always visit your college library and see if they are available there; you’ll save yourself the dollars!
Kitchen appliances such as toasters and microwaves can be left behind, as they’ll likely be accessible at college (however, it is always a good idea to double-check this with your college directly, just in case). Having said that, you should remember to pack a few basic kitchen items, such as your own cups and utensils. You can always wait until you actually arrive at college before buying much bigger items (such as frying pans, plates, etc) as they can take up a lot of space in your luggage.
Every single piece of clothing you own
We get it; you’re going to wait to have plenty of outfit choices so that you can make a good first impression when classes start. Nevertheless, don’t make the mistake of bringing every single piece of clothing you own, because there’s really no need. Primarily because, unfortunately, dorm rooms don’t tend to have generous closet space. Like, at all. So, instead of emptying the entire contents of your closet into your luggage and calling it a day; try to be more practical with your clothing choices. (Remember, you’ll likely spend about 80% of your time in loungewear, anyway).
College printers can seem overpriced and it can feel like they eat away at your precious printer credits like it’s nobody’s business. Therefore, it’s all too tempting to just haul your own printer to college. But, trust us, you don’t want to make that mistake. Believe it or not, using college printers is much more cost-effective than having to frequently repurchase ink. Not to mention the fact that the last thing you want is to be bombarded with requests from friends asking you to print materials for them. All of those little favours will add up, and you’ll be paying for it.
We know, we know. You’re going to miss your home comforts; your parents’ cooking. But it probably goes without saying that your college certainly isn’t going to be short of food. Just buy what you need when you arrive. It’s nothing but unnecessary space taken up in your luggage. Okay, maybe you can bring one box of home-baked goods. But just one.
If stocking up on new stationery isn’t one of the most exciting aspects of starting your first semester at college, we’re not quite sure what is. However, save yourself the money, because you’ll be able to pick up plenty of freebies during Welcome Week. Who doesn’t love freebies? If you find you need something specific when classes start, you can always pick it up along the way. For now, just take a notepad and a few pens.
Without question, you should bring any personal medication with you for your move to college. It really goes without saying. However, basic toiletries such as shampoos, conditioners, soaps and shower gel can be easily acquired when you arrive at college. They take up a ton of space in your luggage, and if you’re travelling to your new home at college by flight, strict airline baggage allowances might end up costing you more than it’s worth.