26th September 2019
When moving away for university, it’s tempting to take everything you own along with you. While this may seem like a good idea, it can be awkward, heavy and unnecessary – keep reading to find out why.
Remember when packing that this isn’t forever. Student accommodation is temporary, and soon after you’ll likely be moving into another house. Whether you’ve moved down the road or to the other end of the UK, there will be plenty of opportunities to visit home, and how tempting does packing and unpacking your entire wardrobe between two locations sound? We thought so…
Be sensible when it comes to choosing clothes to take to university. Pick out your favourite pieces, items you wear the most and the odd fancy outfit should you need it. Most importantly, choose warmth – you’ll be moving in September or October, so put the shorts back and pack some knitwear!
While over-preparing is better than under-preparing, you don’t need to go to university laden down with stationary. A lot of these products can be bought when you arrive, many of which are very reasonably priced. Ensure you have the basics – notepads, folders and pens, but don’t go overboard unless your course requires it – if you’re not studying maths, do you really need that calculator? Don’t forget that Freshers Fairs bring with them a tonne of freebies – make sure you take full advantage and stock up!
This will depend on your choice of accommodation and what is included – housing is more likely to have kitchen appliances than halls – but the chances are, you only need the basics. You’ll be sharing the kitchen with others, so don’t feel like you are responsible for bringing everything. If you need cutlery, a toaster, kettle, microwave and so on, local shops and supermarkets should be your first stop. Be sure to check what your local accommodation permits – you may not be allowed to bring that deep fat fryer with you! Don’t worry too much about toiletries, either – they will take up room and can often be heavy – just buy them when you arrive.
Do you actually need your TV? If you have a laptop, can you use that for Netflix instead? Will you need to take the TV every time you go home? These are all questions to ask when packing gadgets and tech. University libraries have printers, communal rooms will often have televisions – and don’t forget what your phone can do. Acting as a mobile, torch, alarm clock, calculator and camera, your phone eliminates the need for all of the above – pack savvy!
While we love a good read, we don’t advise taking every book you own to university. If you’re reading for leisure or for something to do, then it’s a great idea – but take only a handful. Don’t forget, between your studies and socialising, you may find your time is taken up and your books are simply gathering dust. If you’re an avid reader, check out the university library, where you can lend a variety of books. You can also buy cheap books from charity shops, rather than paying full price.
To save space, you could also invest in an Amazon Kindle, or a similar device, to keep all of your reads in one place. As for text books, you may want to wait until you get there before buying these, as they are heavy and bulky. That way, you can ask your lecturers for a recommended reading list and make sure you’re choosing the right books.
Probably the hardest thing to leave behind, your pet shouldn’t really be on your list. While there are other people’s allergies to consider, as well as things like leaving your pet behind for a long period or struggling to care for them properly, there’s one main problem. Most student accommodation providers simply don’t allow it. If they do, you’d have to ensure that all your housemates were okay with your pet being in the house. Let’s be honest – a student house just isn’t the place for a pet anyway! Leave them at home and visit (or FaceTime) them often.