What to Pack for Uni
By now you will have been accepted into uni - so first things first, congratulations is in order! You are going through a very exciting time and I am sure you have already started to think about what you will be taking to uni with you.
We understand packing for uni can be a very overwhelming task, and if you’re anything like me, you will be wanting to take EVERYTHING with you. Realistically, most uni rooms are fairly small and often don’t have a large amount of storage space. But fear not, we have put together a comprehensive list of items we think are important for you to think about taking. Don’t forget you aren’t moving to a desert island, where what you have is what you’ve got - you can buy things when you are there as well.
Our packing list is broken down into the following categories:
Although it is likely that you will rarely use these documents, it is very important to have them with you whilst you are at university. Make sure you have hard and soft copies and keep the hard copies in a folder, in a safe place so you can find them if and when you need them. During my first few weeks of uni I lost my whole purse which had my ID, student ID, bank cards etc, so having all these documents on hand was very useful for re-ordering my cards and proving my identity.
Passport/driving licence/some sort of ID
I personally always had my driving licence on me for going out etc, however, it is important to have your passport with you in case you need it when starting a new job, or if you decide to go abroad! I would not, however, recommend taking your passport out on a night out if you can possibly avoid it (this is very expensive to replace if lost!)
Student Finance Documents - incase for some reason your loan doesn’t come through or there are any kind of issues surrounding this
University documents e.g. acceptance letter, accommodation choices (this will have your address on it too) etc
Bank details and bank card
National Insurance Card
You can’t make it through uni without a laptop (especially during these times, where so much of it will be online). We have comprised a list of essential and non-essential electrical items we believe you should take with you.
Laptop and charger
Phone and charger (bring several cables if you have them, they’re bound to go missing and/or break)
Hair dryer/straightener/curling wand
Extension lead (!!)
Ethernet cable (most uni rooms will have an ethernet port to plug the cable in)
Camera (optional as most people use their phones)
I found that most of the clothes I wore at uni were either one extreme or another - I would be full going out attire, or full slob attire. However, we have made a list for all your clothing needs.
‘Going out out’/party/clubbing clothing
Everyday clothing and shoes (lectures/brunch with your mates)
Formal clothing and shoes (balls, society dinners etc)
Sports clothing (and anything essential for the sport you want to play e.g. shinpads)
Costumes - if you are part of a society most weeks they do a social where you have to dress up, so if you already have some costumes with you, definitely bring them as this will save you money throughout the year
Slippers/sliders - could not recommend these enough! My kitchen floor was always grim and if you didn't wear something on your feet you would get things stuck to your socks…
Flipflops - especially useful if you have a shared bathroom
Seasonal clothing (hats, scarves, gloves, sunglasses etc)
When you join your halls all of your furniture will be already in place, so all you have to think about is the basics. Make sure you check the size of your bed so you know what linen to get! These are all the essentials we think you should have, but we have put all bedroom decoration items in the miscellaneous list.
Duvet and pillows
Bed linen - duvet cover, pillow covers, bed sheets - I took two sets with me
Hot water bottle
Mini sewing kit
Over the door hooks
This list will vary depending on whether you have an en-suite or you are sharing bathroom facilities, but we’ve got you covered either way! If you don’t have an en-suite, most rooms will have a sink which can be very useful, but make sure you check with your accommodation first.
Towels (for body and face) - I took two sets so I had one to use if the other was in the wash, or if I had guests over
Toothbrush and toothpaste
Shampoo and conditioner
Shower shoes (a must for communal bathrooms)
Cleaning supplies e.g. cleaning sponges/clothes, shower spray, bleach, toilet cleaner, anti-bac etc (en-suite)
Toilet roll (en-suite)
Bath mat (en-suite)
Bathroom caddy (to carry all your stuff to the shower if you are in a shared bathroom)
It is super important to make sure you have all your medical and toiletries with you, however, don't forget you can buy these once you’re there. I would also recommend letting your doctor know that you are going to uni and asking them if you can stock up on any prescriptions because sometimes it can take a while for your records to get across to your new GP and you don't want to be left short
Paracetamol / Nurofen / Ibuprofen
Cough medicine (I had a horrendous cough after freshers week, which lasted for over a month so this was a life saviour)
Antiseptic cream / wipes
Birth control pills (if applicable)
Razors / hair removal items
Hair bobbles / clips
Make sure you check before you arrive at uni what will be included in the kitchen and go from there. Usually, uni halls provide a toaster, kettle and microwave, so you don't have to worry about getting those. Below is a list of everything we think you should take to uni:
Bowls and plates (2 of each are recommended, but make sure you do your washing up or you'll be left with nothing to eat off of!)
Cutlery (I had x4 forks, knives, spoons and teaspoons. I would also recommend getting cutlery which stands out so it doesn't get lost with all the silverware).
Baking Tray (you can get round ones for pizza too - would recommend)
Reusable water bottle
Dishcloths/sponges - we recommend the Dishmatic one where you can put the washing up liquid in the handle
Blender (great for smoothies, soup etc)
Toastie machine (completely optional but I love my George Foreman as I use it to cook vegetables, as well as my cheese toasties)
Again, all of these items can be bought when you get there, in fact I did a massive Amazon order to my accommodation of all the academic things I needed so I didn’t have to trek it all the way up to uni.
Diary / journal / planner
Notepads / writing paper
Plastic wallets (optional, but I love them)
Pens / pencils / highlighters
Calculator (if applicable for your subject)
Stapler and staples
PLEASE NOTE your university will send you a recommended reading list, but it’s best to purchase these books once you arrive. Not only will these textbooks cost A LOT, but they will add unnecessary weight to your luggage. My advice is to get as many books as you can from the library (after all this is what it is for) and anything the libraries don't have, or are short on, I would recommend buying second hand.
These random items might slip your mind when you are packing, some are just useful to have whilst others can be used for decorating your new room! Don’t forget to check what your halls allow and don't allow - most will only allow you to have battery operated fairy lights and won’t want you sticking things to the walls.
Blu Tac / washi tape (won't leave marks on the walls)
Pins (most uni rooms have a pinboard)
Febreeze / air freshener
Fairy lights (battery operated)
Plants (real or fake) for decoration
Cushions / blanket for your bed
Full length mirror
Photos of family and friends
Storage boxes (check if you can store items under the bed, if so this is a great way to store shoes etc)
CHECK BEFORE YOU PACK
As mentioned before, halls will have a few things included already, so make sure you check before you pack what appliances will already be there and what you are not allowed in your uni room. Please be aware that most unis will want you to have your electrical equipment tested before you bring it with you, to ensure they are safe. Here is a list of things you may want to check you’re allowed to bring before you pack them:
Kettle (in your room and in the kitchen)
Mini Fridge (in your room)