There’s a lot to remember when packing for your first year of college. Below is a list of suggestions to help you stay organized. Talk to your roommate early and coordinate together who’s going to bring what. This will avoid duplication in your room. Remember that space is limited.
Find out in advance what size bed you get in your dorm. Twin? Or twin extra long?
Bath and Toiletries
Find out what your bath situation is. Do you have your own private bath? Do you share with another room? Is there one big one per floor? You are going to want to consider portability when purchasing bath supplies, especially if you have anything other than a private bath.
|Antacids||Bandages||Disinfectant spray||Toilet paper|
|Cough drops||Shower tote||Shampoo||Conditioner|
|Hair styling products||Face soap||Soap container||Body wash|
|Comb||Contact cleaner||Eye drops||Deodorant|
|Cotton balls||Curling iron||Flat iron||Blow dryer|
|Cosmetics||Cosmetics bag||Dental floss||Toothbrush|
|Q-Tips||Razor||Shaving gel||Shower shoes|
Find out where your laundry facilities are located and how far away they are from your dorm. Are they in your dorm? Do they cost money? Do you have to go off-campus?
|Detergent||Dryer sheets||Iron||Ironing board|
|Clothes hangers||Laundry basket/bag||Lint brush||Stain remover|
Office and Desk Supplies
Think about what your school already offers, and what you like to have when studying.
|Address book||Pencil sharpener||Labels||3×5 cards|
|Post-it Notes||Paper clips||Scissors||Ruler|
|Tape||Pencil cup||Rubber bands|
Think about what the climate is like where you will be going to school, and if you will be returning home before the seasons change. If you can avoid bringing clothes for every season at once, do so; clothing space is usually minimal.
|20x underwear||20x socks||7x pants||15x shirts|
|Pajamas||Heavy jacket||Light jacket||Gloves|
|2x walking shoes||Dress shoes||Nylons||Purse|
|1x business attire||Athletic shoes||Warm-ups||Gym clothes|
Figure out what furniture is provided, if any, and whether you are allowed to hang things on the walls. Some schools don’t allow tape or nails on wall surfaces.
|Bedside lamp||Alarm clock||Wastebasket||Fan|
|Storage cubes||Bulletin board||Toolkit||Desk lamp|
|Under-bed storage||Dry-erase board||Hangers||Frames|
|Curtains||Floor rug||Pictures Posters|
|Bean bag/chair||Throw blanket|
If you are bringing your own computer find out if there is Internet access in your room and what the compatibility requirements are so you can be prepared.
|CD-ROMs/DVD-Rs||Flash drive||Mouse||Mouse pad|
|Phone cord||Software||Speakers||Owner’s manuals|
|Carrying case||Headphones||Laptop lock|
Find out what kind of electronics are allowed and supplied in the dorms, and make sure to consult with your roommate – you don’t need duplicates of big-ticket items like TVs, DVDs or refrigerators.
|TV||TV remote||DVD player||DVDs|
|Extension cord||Flashlight||Stereo||MP3 player/iPod|
|Cell phone charger||Cell phone||Batteries||Cable cord|
|Gaming consoles||Games||Camera Phone/answering machine|
Yes, even if you have a cafeteria, there is a good chance you’ll want to whip something up in your room. Find out what the policy is at your dorm on cooking, specifically on cooking electronics like microwaves, coffee pots, and hot plates. Some schools allow them and some strictly forbid them.
|Coffee cups||Coffee filters||Coffee pot||Dishes|
|Measuring cup||Cooking spray||Paper towel||Aluminum foil|
|Can opener||Water Filter||Ziploc bags||Microwave|
|Toaster oven||Dorm refrigerator||Tupperware||Britta Water Filters|
There will be moments when you feel like “eating in” or having a late night snack in your dorm, so pack some snacks. Don’t mess with perishable food; dry food is best, and stuff that can be stored easily.
|Bottled water||Cereal||Juice boxe||Soda|
|Peanut butter & jelly||Power bars||Popcorn Crackers|
|Ramen noodles||Mac ‘n’ cheese||Coffee||Chips|
Living on your own also means you have to pick up after yourself. When it comes to areas like the bathroom and kitchen area, you’ll want cleaning supplies on hand.
|All purpose cleaner||Broom||Dish cloth||Dish soap|
|Portable vacuum||Paper towels||Scrub brush||Dish towel|
|Toilet bowl cleaner||Garbage bags||Dust wipes||Light bulbs|
Miscellaneous stuff you might need
You want to be prepared for everything, so try to think of unique situations and what you might need to handle them. What would you need for a dentist appointment? If something breaks? If you get bored? Also remember that you will be very busy, so you don’t want to bring too much.
|Emergency car kit||Checkbook||Dental card||Credit card|
|Social Security Number||Spare car key||Duct tape||Earplugs|
|Emergency contact info||Bug spray||Board games||Driver’s license|
|Sun block||Beach towel||Surge protector||Trash can|