Dorm Living: What to Bring With You to College

Dorm Living: What to Bring With You to College
  • Opening Intro -

    As you prepare to leave for college for the first time, you'll need to make a list of what to bring with you.

    And that list needs to be comprehensive to include everything from your personal effects to furniture.


If you will be living in a dorm, you’ll be limited in what you can bring. Follow our list to check off the things you will need, what will include the following items.

1. Personal effects. Every kind of personal item you need to keep yourself feeling and looking right should be brought with you. That includes your toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss, mouthwash, deodorant, perfumes, shampoo, conditioner, skin lotion, razors, shave cream, make up, and more. Because you’ll be taking showers in a public area, bring with you flip flops to wear while you shower. Oh, didn’t they tell you about foot fungus?

2. Ample bedding and towels. Figure that you’ll be given a single (twin) bed while you’re on campus. Bring with you a mattress cover, two sets of bedding (sheets and pillowcases), one or two blankets, and a quilt. Bring a pair of fluffy pillowcases too. Consider using heavier sheets such as flannel if you will be attending school where winters are very cold. Bring with you at least two sets of bathroom towels including hand towels and wash clothes. You’ll need a foldable towel rack to dry them off too!

3. Prescription medicines. If you’ve been fortunate, you don’t have prescriptions to worry about. Maybe the occasional pill for headaches. For the rest of us, a 30-day supply of medications is necessary. Moreover, you should have automatic renewals included AND a way to get what you need while on campus. You may need to transfer your prescriptions to a local pharmacy. Also bring with you vitamins, hot/cold packs, nasal decongestants, and anything else that can ease your occasional discomfort. Don’t forget the tissues!

4. Electronic devices. Likely, you’ll need little reminder about the many electronic devices you own including your smart phone, your lap top, and your iTouch. Besides the devices themselves you will need chargers and/or batteries to keep what you own sufficiently juiced. Carrying cases, charging ports and packs may also be needed. Bring along a wireless printer, if needed.

5. Sufficient clothing. Unless you’re planning to head back home several times a year, you’ll need enough clothing on hand to keep you, well, clothed. Bring clothes for winter and summer, fall and spring, everything from shorts and t-shirts to shirts, pants, running shoes, and socks. You’ll need your belts, bathrobe, work clothes and, yes, underwear too. Other clothing that may be needed includes pajamas, dress up attire, dress down clothes, hats, gloves, scarves, boots, jackets and coats. If you are work out regularly, then exercise clothing should be brought with you too.

Bring it With You

Getting all your “stuff” to college means also finding the right storage and tote items to bring what you need with you. If you own colorful milk crates, load these up with some items, using them in your dorm as storage, for chairs or as the foundation for a desk. Fold up boxes, bags and a trunk are also important ways for bringing what you need with you and for reuse later. Consider also a new kitchen trash can, what can hold some items and be used for trash collection later — don’t forget the bags!

See AlsoOff to College: Room Decorating on a Budget


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Categories: Personal Advice