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When you first set off for university it’s likely that the thought of your new living arrangements are more daunting than the prospect of challenging lectures and ridiculously long essays. If you know what to pack, however, things can be considerably easier. Here are a list of dos and don’ts to help you out.


  • Photos of friends and family from home – even though you can always flick through photos on Facebook there’s no doubt that having something physical that you can touch can help make you feel a bit closer to home if you get homesick. They’re also a really quick and easy way to decorate your new room.
  • Stationery – while you might find yourself only regularly needing a hole-puncher or stapler, the pen will become your new best friend so make sure to buy them in bulk and get plenty of paper in a range of sizes.
  • Alarm clock – even when you manage to get an early night an alarm clock is the only way to get most students out of bed in time to make it to their lectures.
  • Passport photos – there are lots of clubs and societies that you can join and some of them will require a membership card complete with photo. Get them done before you leave so you have them to hand and can make sure you’re looking good.
  • Computer – although there will be university computers available for use, most students couldn’t get by without their own laptop. It’s great to be able to work wherever and whenever you want and to have everything you need in one place. You can use it to take notes in lectures, research and write your essay, email your tutors, as well as connect with friends and watch TV online.
  • First aid kit – for those inevitable accidents a plaster will come in handy and it’s certain you’ll need painkillers at some point.
  • Pack of cards – when your new housemates want to play (sensible) drinking games you’ll find yourself with plenty of new best friends if you can bust out a deck of playing cards.


  • Books – not unless they’re for your course anyway. You’ll find that you don’t have much time to read those weighty novels during your first few weeks and even if you do your university is likely to have a well-stocked library at your disposal, so make the most of that.
  • Television – You should be far too busy to be watching television during your first few months at university and anyway, so many devices enable you to watch television on them these days. Also, watching television with other people will help you make friends quicker.
  • Your pet – perhaps slightly obvious, but you’ll find that your new accommodation doesn’t take kindly to pets, and you probably won’t give it the attention it deserves anyway. Best to leave the four-legged friends at home.
  • Needless expensive items – Unfortunately students are often the targets of crime because they’re likely to have expensive items on them. While you might not be willing to part with your smartphone, which at least has plenty of functional value, it might be best to leave the useless designer sunglasses and watch at home for a special occasion in exchange for something a bit cheaper.

This post was penned on behalf of OCVC.