It’s that time of year; you’ve just got into university, and in the rush to say goodbye to all your friends, sort out accommodation, and plan your Freshers’ events, you’re pretty sure you’ve forgotten about twelve different things that you’re supposed to be packing to take to university with you.
Luckily for you, I’ve been there, done that, and got the foam-encrusted Freshers’ t-shirt to show it, and this is my new and improved, freshly updated, ‘What to Take to University’ checklist!
Everything below is organised into sections, so you can nail your shopping list a little easier! However, there is a downloadable checklist at the end if you’d prefer to just download that!
Making your bedroom comfortable and homely is one of the most important parts of the ‘big move’, so I’d definitely recommend a tonne of fairy lights, photographs, and trinkets, as well as the essentials:
- Bedding – most universities will require you to bring your own duvet & pillows, as well as a duvet cover and blankets – Tesco have some great ones at pretty friendly prices.
- Doorstop – a lot of uni halls have heavy doors which shut automatically, so a lot of people tend to wedge theirs open so housemates know they’re home. Because of this, door stops are always sold out in university towns for the first few weeks of term, so stock up on yours before you go!
- First aid kit – this is pretty important, for obvious reasons, but also keep in mind that you will get Freshers’ Flu, and you’ll need all the cold remedies you can find.
- Hangers. Get a bulk pack, you’ll need them, but try and get them closer to your halls rather than bringing some from home. They’re bulky!
- Hot water bottle/electric blanket – personally, I feel the cold a lot, and university housing is notorious for having pretty awful heating, so stock up on something to keep you warm.
- Laundry bag/basket.
- Noticeboard – some university rooms come with these, but make sure to bring pins – they were sold out everywhere for a good few weeks at the start of term near my campus, nobody had remembered them!
- Room spray – you won’t be allowed candles on campus, and it can get pretty stuffy.
- Wall calendar – although a lot of universities give this out during freshers’.
- Waste bin – for those tricky assignments.
- White tac – the normal blu tac can stain walls, so white tac will protect your precious deposit!
- Baking trays – you’ll need at least 2, because someone will inevitably steal one/ask you to put some food in for them/throw it out the window.
- Bottle opener – no one else will bring one. Seriously.
- Dishware – bowls, side plates, dinner plates, glasses and mugs – you probably don’t need a full set of four, depending on how often you plan on having your family visit, but I’d recommend about 2 of each, in case you break one!
- Cutlery – buy a huge set. I started with 16, and ended up coming home with about 5.
- Can opener.
- Flask – for early morning lectures across campus in the freezing cold. Do it.
- Cake tin – in my experience, having a few treats around to offer people never hurts.
- Frying pans & saucepans – you don’t need to invest too much in these, but a basic variety should do you well – especially if you’d like to try my cheer me up tacos to win over your new housemates!
- Pyrex dish – pretty optional, but I used to make a big pasta bake or casserole on a Sunday, then keep some leftovers for evenings I had late lectures. Plus, if you can bake, these brownies are a sure fire way to make your new housemates love you!
- Wooden spoon
- Knives – when it comes to knives, buy a few good quality ones, instead of a cheap knife block you’ll never use. They’ll fall apart in a hot minute and you’ll be left desperately searching your uni shop to see if they stock them.
- Chopping board.
- Pizza cutter – I went without, and found myself saying ‘I wish I had a pizza cutter’ at least five times throughout the first term.
- Tupperware – get a tonne of these, in various sizes. You’ll use them more than you’ll realise.
- Oven gloves.
- Tea towels.
- Food bags & clips.
- Any dried food you can take with you – in case you don’t get to shop on the first day!
I managed to nab an en-suite whilst I was at uni, so this is a pretty extensive list; if you’re sharing, just be aware that you won’t have as much bathroom storage!
- Towels – two bath & two hand towels, I’d suggest. You might also want old towels for if you bleach/dye your hair.
- Cosmetics, skincare, bodycare products – these go without saying, I’m sure, but bare in mind if you’re moving to a campus-based university that it won’t always be easy to pick up your favourite products.
- Razor & blades – do yourself a favour and get these in bulk, you’ll thank yourself later!
- Shampoo & conditioner.
- Toothbrush & paste.
- Shower caddy/bag – if you’re sharing a bathroom, you’ll need it!
- Academic diary – you won’t be reminded of your deadlines anymore, so you’ll need one of these.
- Folders/binders – keeping the 200 lecture slides you’re printing out a week safe and in one place as you go is going to save you a lot of stress down the line.
- Highlighters – do yourself a favour and get the printer-safe variety.
- Post-its – if I could dedicate my degree life to one specific item, it would be the humble post-it. I love them, and am obsessed with them, and they come in every variety.
- Printer & spare inks – I got an all-in-one printer, because it worked out cheaper than paying 5p per sheet at the campus library – some lecturers expect you to take lecture slides to make notes on, so it’s a worthwhile investment!
- USB sticks – take a tonne. You’ll lose at least three and have nothing to save your essay on.
- Superglue – it sounds stupid, but someone will break your stuff/their stuff/fixtures in your apartment and you’ll be glad to have it.
- Copies of your CV – if you’re wanting a little part time work during your first year, it’s so often first come first serve, so getting in there early with your CV could be a good idea!
- Exam certificates – they’ll probably want these for enrollment, so bring ’em along.
- Housing contract – this’ll have info about your rent and any deposit you put down.
- Passport – a lot of people leave this at home, but you’ll probably need it for applications.
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