College Packing Do’s and Don’ts
I am currently working on an exhaustive college packing list printable, which will hopefully go out next week. But today, I thought I would do a teaser post including some items that you absolutely should or should not bring to your dorm!
Look at what is going to be in your room first, and don’t start buying until then. For example, if your room has a trashcan, you don’t need to bring an additional trash can.
- Organizers for around your
room. Go to the dollar store and pick out lots of plastic organizers, bins,
and baskets for around your room. The key to keeping such a small space like a
dorm room clean is making sure everything has a place. Things like school
supplies, makeup, keys, random samples, etc. all need a place to live or else
your room will get chaotic.
- Bath robe and shower shoes.
I know, saying you need shower shoes is kind of beaten to death at this
point. But seriously, don’t even go into the bathroom without flip flops on.
And a bath robe is just nice, so that you don’t have to walk around in a towel.
- Kettle and mini fridge. Save a ton of money by making your own instant coffee or tea in the
morning. And having a mini fridge is a necessity for water, snacks, and
alcohol. I recommend getting one with a freezer!
- Fan. This depends on how old your school is, but many res buildings don’t
have air conditioning.
- Cleaning supplies. You’ll want a few supplies on hand to keep your room clean, namely a
duster, Windex, and Lysol wipes. However, that is basically all you will need.
You don’t need to bring your own broom and vacuum.
- Batteries, extension cords,
and surge protectors. Until you get to the room,
you won’t know how your outlets are set up, so extension cords might be a
necessity. Batteries and surge protectors are just necessities.
- Documents, like health and insurance information, your SIN number, and copies of
your res agreement. If you need to pick up a prescription or apply for a job,
you will need these important documents!
- First aid kit. Get a pencil case or makeup bag and fill it with the first aid
essentials. Pain killers, Polysporin, Band-Aids, Midol, an Ace bandage, etc.
But just like with cleaning supplies, don’t go to crazy with things you won’t
- Extra furniture and
storage, at least until you have done a room tour. I always see packing lists
saying to bring an ottoman or a beanbag chair. I disagree. Your room will
probably already be cramped, and you will end up sitting on your bed all the time anyways. When it comes to storage, most dorm rooms actually have quite a bit. Having giant Rubbermaid bins and rolling storage carts might just be a waste of space.
- Microwave or hot plate. There will likely be a microwave and even a stove on your floor. A
microwave takes too much space, and a hot plate is a fire hazard in a small
room. You won’t be using them that much anyways.
- Area rug, curtains, and
other large decorations. Definitely bring some
photos and small decorative items, but bringing large things like this is a
waste of space in the car, as well as money.
- Iron. Some lists also recommend you bring an iron, but unless you are devoting
hours a week to laundry, you’re never going to use it. Most college students
don’t even separate whites and colours, let alone iron.
- Printer. Unless for some reason you are going to be printing hundreds of pages a
week, this is not needed. You will probably end up doing readings online and a
lot of work is submitted online as well. You can get pages printed for 5 cents,
and even when you total the number of pages printed, it will probably be a lot
less than buying a printer and paying for ink refills throughout the year.