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Hints & Tips

What to Pack for University

In the run up to moving to university (congrats, by the way!) you will most likely be scouring the internet for useful lists of what to take with you. Remember to not over-pack as you will most likely have to take most of it home every term. The logical items to take are all your paperwork, clothes for the first term, laptop, books, films, etc. Depending on your course, consider taking any relevant notes from your A levels.

Once you know where you’re staying this year, find out whether you will need to bring your own crockery and cooking utensils. If it’s catered, chances are you’ll just need a mug, and a plate or two for when it’s time for crumpets.

We asked our team for things they found useful to take to university which were not necessarily the first thing you’d think of taking.

1. A hot water bottle – heating will be practically non-existent. When it comes down to food or warmth, food will always win. You will win by carrying the hot water bottle around under your dressing gown. Don’t judge, you will do it as well.

2. Have a Phillips and flat head screw driver. They will come in handy at the most random of times. You will probably have to free someone from a room, build an item of furniture, free something that has fallen at the back of the sofa. Oh, the possibilities.

3. Pegs. While it is unlikely you’ll have the commodity of drying clothes outside, pegs fulfil an array of …. You can keep crisps fresher for longer by simply pegging the bag shut. Rice will be contained in its packet as will sugar, coffee, etc.

4. Pack of cards. Or a game that can be played by a group of people. There will come a time when you financially or emotionally cannot go out to the pub.

5. Pack a sleeping bag for when you visit your pals at other universities across the country. Alternatively, you could take an inflatable bed for when your BFF comes for the weekend.

6. Flip flops. Unless you’re really lucky, you will have to share the bathroom with at least 4 other people. You have been warned. Check out the bathmat once you arrive, you may want to take a small towel with you to stand on.

7. Extension cords. You’ll underestimate how many electrical appliances need to be used at the same time.

8. Small torch. How many times has it been pitch black in the house and you have imagined a Scream/I Know What You Did Last Summer scenario. They come in handy.


9. First aid kit. Keep cough medicine, paracetamol, plasters, cold sore solution, lip balm, antiseptic cream, gauze and a pair of small scissors. Fresher’s Flu is real, be prepared.

10. Take two sets of bedding, and two (maybe three) sets of towels. Have you heard of a mattress protector? Maybe take one of those too.

11. A laundry bag. A basket will look cute, but if you have to carry it across the entire grounds, or even up a couple of flights of stairs, you might prefer a bag. Similarly, try and keep some shrapnel for the washing machine. And a clothes horse will also come in handy. Even if there are dryers, you will not be able to tumble-dry everything.

12. A door wedge. Use it especially in the first week. It will make you look approachable and open to chatting.

Other things to consider are ear plugs, a printer, a mini sewing kit, a lamp. If you’re fancy, a mini fridge. People will go to worship your fridge. Plus, you will be able to store your milk for tea and coffee and fave spread for toast. Bonus.

What other items did you take to university? Leave them in the comments or tweet us @Preloved!

Zoe Allison

Zoe Allison

Writer and expert