What you REALLY need for University

Packing to move to University can sometimes be overwhelming, which is totally understandable given that you’re essentially moving out. Well, kind of. University is a brilliant stepping stone from living at home to having your own place. I am going into my third year of University and I have learnt so much about self-sufficiency, the real world and what I like to call “adulting”.

“Adulting”: A term I use to describe my current life status. Basically trying to be an adult. Like having a provisional licence… but not having passed the test yet! Oh and it’s absolutely nothing to do with adultery- disclaimer. 

So I have put together a list of 25 things people are more likely to forget or gloss over when they’re packing to move- but won’t regret taking.

Here we go!

1. A tray– mega cheap, but crucial! The reality is, sometimes you leave a few too many mugs in your room, a bowl or even a plate- and you don’t want to do multiple trips!

2. Converse or flat shoes- Freshers is crazy fun and by the end of the week you don’t necessarily want to be dancing in heels! In fact most people go to SU events in trainers or flats. This way there are less blisters and you’re not as upset when someone spills a drink on your shoes or steps on your feet!

3. A frying pan– this may seem obvious, but I just brought some standard pans with me and it was something I wished I had thought of. The frying pan makes stir-fries, cooking meat or even a dish like curry or spaghetti bolognaise easier.

4. A lid for your standard pan- again, sounds silly but IKEA didn’t provide lids for mine and I soon realised it was kind of a necessity for some recipes. Like rice- it goes mega goo-y without a lid! #studentproblems

5. A decent knife– I got my knife from IKEA, you might be noticing a pattern here! It was really small so cutting meat was hard work and took a while.

6. A rug- this is more of a preference, but I loved having something other than the normal carpet to step out of bed on to. It just made me feel more at home. This is ideal if you think you might feel homesick- just make your room feel like your own.

7. Pads and Pens- for the first 6 months of University, I used a pad and pen, however I soon realised that I wasn’t as quick at making notes as I thought and that when it came to writing essays, it was easier for it all to be on the laptop. Second year I used my laptop the entire time. This is a preference, but consider what YOU need, if you’re likely to be typing the whole time, save some pennies and only bring one or two pads. You can always buy more later.

8. A bedside lamp- most of Warwick accommodation have one central ceiling light, which is great, but I found that the beside lamp was a score. Nobody wants to get out of a toasty warm bed to turn the light off and navigate your way back in the dark.

9. Recipe books– there are so many brilliant recipe books, particularly ones that are for students specifically, such as NOSH (highly recommend!) Some even show the prices and calories. Have a look around and bring one or two with you.

10. Salt and Pepper– add some flavour to meals.

11. Sugar- I didn’t bring sugar with me, I don’t have it in teas and so (for some unknown reason!) didn’t bring it. I really regretted it as cereal or recipes sometimes need it. A small bag will do.

12. Savings- I feel that the expense of Freshers can be over-exaggerated. You don’t need to have saved hundreds (unless you really want to). SU drinks are cheap, and most of the time, especially during Freshers Week, you play games and pre-drink (optional of course!) to make friends. Plus, events at the SU are really decent prices. So don’t worry too much!

13. Change- I feel that you are more likely to need change for things like bus fares and washing machines. I went to University with £50 in coins and just used them when and if I need to. I very rarely carry cash in my purse and sometimes using a debit or credit card isn’t an option.

14. Slippers- a big one for me. If you’re lucky, you might be in a flat where nobody ever spills anything… but, on the occasion there is something you don’t fancy stepping in- slippers are ideal. Or even if the cleaner has been and the floor is still damp.

15. Flip-flops- if you have a communal bathroom, these are pretty useful.

16. Plenty of loungewear- comfort is central when getting on with deadlines. Hoodies, jumpers, tracksuit bottoms, or leggings- I spent a fair amount of time in comfort clothes while smashing deadlines or chilling during the day. Sometimes it doesn’t seem acceptable to wear pyjamas at 3 in the afternoon- so jogging bottoms it is!

17. Stationary: post-it notes: to mark pages of books- much easier than constantly trying to find the right page. Highlighter- seminar prep sometimes requires pre-reading (depending on the course) so a highlighter definitely comes in handy here. Files: keeping organised is central to avoiding panics when you lose things, which leads me onto a hole punch. Again, necessary to filing! If you’re like me, you’ll go to town on the stationary just because you can, but the above is all you really NEED, besides pens and paper.

18. Printer- I bought a printer for University, which certainly makes it easier. However, it isn’t a necessity, there are printers all over campus that you can pay (via your student card) for. They are everywhere. So don’t panic if you don’t have one.

19. Hot water bottle- living in halls means that the temperature isn’t always what you want it to be. I found that in the winter I got a little chilly (though I know others didn’t) so a hot water bottle just made my bed warm before I hopped into it. It’s a preference.

20. Coat hangers- just a must have really.

21. Clothes horse- I found that washing made my room smell AMAZING, but to make sure it doesn’t smell of damp, a washing line is advised! Also hanging wet clothes on every available surface gets in the way eventually.

22. A medicine bag- paracetamol, lemsips, anti-sickness drugs- the sort that means you don’t even have to leave your room when you’re feeling rough. Quite literally a life saver.

23. Extension lead- there are sometimes limited plugs, so the extender cables are great for making sure you’re not constantly unplugging and swapping things over.

24. Tupperware– I am the Queen of Tupperware, I have so many random pots and containers. But if you make too much food- Tupperware. If you need to freeze something- Tupperware. Want a snack during lectures- Tupperware. It comes in handy!

25. A door stop– getting locked out is not only embarrassing but bloomin’ annoying.

I hope this is helpful, I think it’s really important to remember that Universities do have shops, so if you forget something- don’t panic! Plus, you’re going to make loads of friends and people are very generous with sharing things.

This is supposed to be exciting, so enjoy the shopping, the anticipation and make the most of the break before the start of first term!

Bee xoxox

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