If you’re packing for college, chances are you don’t need a list of more things to put in your suitcase, you need less! After all, your dorm room is likely to be a lot small than your bedroom at home.
So, for your convenience, we’ve compiled a list that does just that, including the five big ticket items that you can leave at home.
Trust us, when you arrive on campus and start lugging your first suitcase up four flight of stairs, you’ll thank us.
1. Clothes You Won’t Wear This Season
As you start packing for college, pay attention to the weather at your campus as well as your travel plans for school breaks.
If it’s forecasted to be warm and sunny at your school during the first few months and you plan to spend Thanksgiving at home, you can leave behind your heavy winter coat and boots until after the holiday. At that point, you can simply exchange your summer clothes for your winter clothes.
If you live too far from home to make frequent trips throughout the year, or if it’s likely to be cold pretty earlier on in the semester, there’s still no need to pack more than a limited amount of clothing — it’s all about choosing the right kind of clothing that can be used throughout the year.
For example, take a couple of winter sweaters and a few pairs of warm socks along with a stock of trademark clothing items like t-shirts and jeans. You can layer the sweaters over your t-shirts when it’s cold out thus making your wardrobe less seasonal and more year round. This tactic is a great way to save space in your closet.
2. Items You Can Buy After You Move In
There are plenty of items that you can buy after you arrive on campus, rather than filling up your suitcase with them now. For example, most of your toiletries can likely be left at home. After all, you can always buy a new toothbrush, toothpaste, and shampoo at the student store or local convenience store.
The same goes for food. It is much easier to take a trip to the grocery store after you move in than to pack every snack you can think of. This is why you won’t see food or drinks on a list of what to pack for college.
3. Most Major Appliances
Before you start packing for college, you should talk to your roommate to determine what each of you will bring. Otherwise, you may end up with two televisions, two microwaves, and two mini refrigerators. Unless you refuse to share these appliances with someone else, it’s a good idea to have only one of each!
Additionally, many colleges will supply you with one or more of these items, so make sure you check first before lugging that mini-fridge up four flights of stairs on move-in day.
The typical dorm is fully furnished, so there is no need to bring any furniture. You and your roommate can each expect to have a bed, a desk, and a dresser upon arrival. A mirror, bulletin board, and chair for each desk will often also be provided, so don’t worry about bringing these as you are packing for college.
Of course, every school is different, so you should find out what is included in your dorm room before you decide what to pack. Getting a tour of the dorms can also allow you to see firsthand how small the space is before you decide what to bring.
5. Hazardous Items
Many colleges have a list of prohibited items, so you should definitely review this prior to packing for college. Some common things you are not supposed to bring include hot plates, toaster ovens, and candles. These are all considered fire hazards.
Even if your school does not have a list of what to pack for college and what to leave at home, you can just use some common sense. For example, it goes without saying that firearms, illegal drugs, and alcohol are not going to pass the test for a dorm.
If you’re ever in doubt about what to pack for college, you can contact your school to find out what those in charge of on-campus housing suggest.