If you’re about to become a first-year undergraduate student, moving to university may be the first relocation you’ve ever had to deal with. Going to university is a great experience that many people view as the biggest and best adventure of their lives, but before you can settle in and enjoy yourself, it’s time to pack up and move!
Like any relocation, moving from your current residence to your new university accommodation can be a challenging experience. However, with the right tips and advice, you can take lots of stress out of the task and make it easier for yourself. Below, we share our top packing and moving tips for undergraduate students heading to university for the first time.
Start the packing process by decluttering
Before you start packing up your belongings, spend time decluttering your bedroom. Not only will this make it easier to pack what you really need, but it will also mean you have a tidy room to come back to during term breaks and holidays. Your parents or guardians will almost certainly appreciate you getting rid of clutter, too!
To begin, get three different sacks and label them. Use one sack for items that need to be binned, one for items that can be recycled, and one for items that can be donated. If you have any belongings that you could sell, create a separate pile for these, too.
When going through your bedroom belongings, try to be as strict as possible with yourself. This is the only way to conduct an effective tidy of your room.
Put items in a self-storage unit
If you have lots of belongings that won’t fit in your new student flat, your parents or guardians may offer to keep them for you until you move into a bigger house. However, if this isn’t an option, you may want to look for self-storage solutions for additional space.
With a self-storage unit, you’ll have plenty of space for storing bulky furniture items, such as bed frames and wardrobes, that you don’t need to take to university. Many halls of residence will supply these items for you, so consider storing anything you don’t need in a local storage unit.
Find out what you can and cannot take
Once you’ve decluttered, it’s time to start packing – almost! Before you begin, it’s important to read through any packing checklists supplied by your university accommodation. If you’re moving into halls of residence, certain items will likely be forbidden. Prohibited items typically include:
• Plug-in heaters
• Fairy lights
• Electric blankets
• Deep fat fryers.
Make sure you’re clear on what these items are before you start putting things into boxes. The last thing you want is to arrive at university, only to realise you’re not allowed lots of the belongings you’ve packed.
Make a comprehensive packing and moving checklist
Once you’ve figured out what you can and can’t take to university, it’s time to make a checklist. Many halls of residence will supply you with a recommended packing list, but of course you may want to add your own items.
If you can, share your checklist with someone who is already studying at university. They’ll be able to tell you whether or not you’ve listed helpful items or whether you’re planning on bringing too much. Once you’ve compiled a list, stick to it as much as you can; ticking items off will help you keep track of what you have already packed.
Find out what your flatmates are bringing
Many halls of residence will set up Facebook pages and other forums where prospective students can meet their new flatmates. If you can get in touch with yours, ask them what kitchen and bathroom items they are planning to bring and offer to bring any remaining items.
By splitting up the purchasing and packing of communal belongings, you can reduce the number of things you need to bring and make sure your new flat doesn’t end up with 10 frying pans and five cheese graters!
Choose cardboard boxes over suitcases
Many first-year students pack their belongings into suitcases and sports bags when relocating to university, but this only means you’ll have lots to store in your new room. You don’t want to take up valuable space with empty suitcases or bulky bags, so swap these for packing boxes.
Cardboard boxes allow you to transport items easily and safely, and once you’re finished, you’ll be able to flatten the boxes to save space. Slide the flattened boxes under your bed, and at the end of term, simply open them up and reuse them.
Label your moving boxes before relocating
Once you arrive at your new home, the chances are that everything will become quite chaotic. You’ll have the chance to meet your new flatmates, take a look around the place, and will likely go out for some lunch with your parents or guardians before they head home.
As a result, the task of unpacking boxes will inevitably be pushed back a day or two as you navigate university life and settle in. Make life easier for yourself and label every box before you arrive. That way, you won’t have to rely on memory to figure out what goes where.
Only pack what you need
It can be tempting to move everything from your bedroom to your halls of residence, but this will only clutter your new room and make the relocation process more difficult. Avoid this by only packing what you really need. This may take some self-control, but it will all be worth it in the end!
Follow your checklist when packing your bags, and if you’re not sure whether to take something or leave it behind, ask yourself this question: have I used it in the past two weeks? If you haven’t used something in the last couple of weeks, it’s probably not an essential item.
Let yourself take some sentimental items
Although it’s important to pack light, don’t be too strict with yourself. Moving away from home can feel overwhelming at first, so consider taking a couple of sentimental items to make your new bedroom cosy. Framed photographs and a room spray with a familiar scent can make your empty student room much more homely. This will go a long way in helping you settle in.
Buy as many essential items as you can once you’ve arrived
As a first-year student, it can be very exciting to go shopping for bathroom and kitchen equipment. Buying a new frying pan or stocking up on fluffy towels can make the whole experience feel more real, and is something many students like to do with their friends or family before heading off. However, the more belongings you purchase before moving in, the more you’ll need to pack and relocate.
If you can, buy as many essential items as possible once you’ve arrived at your new home. This way, you can still enjoy the experience of shopping for household goods, but you won’t have to worry about transporting them.
Hire a removals company to assist with packing and moving
One of the most effective ways to simplify your move to university is hiring a removals company. With a removals company, you’ll have a team of professionals on hand to assist with the packing and moving of your belongings, giving you one less thing to worry about. If you don’t have access to a large enough vehicle, hiring professional movers will ensure you have a van ready for moving day.
Not only will a moving company transport your belongings from your current location to your new university, but they’ll also be able to assist with packing. If you’ve never moved before, having a team of people providing expert guidance will be extremely helpful.
Hiring professional removalists is especially advisable if you’re relocating overseas, as a professional moving company will be able to transport your cargo to your new university quickly, efficiently and safely. Instead of struggling with confusing documentation or worrying about how you’ll relocate your cargo, let a trusted removals company take care of everything for you.
Essex Removals: Make packing and moving much easier with help from the professionals
Whether you’re moving across the country or across the globe, make life easier with help from Essex Removals. We’ve been helping individuals, families and businesses relocate since 1987 and are proud to offer our services to customers across the world.
We offer everything you need to take care of a domestic or commercial move, including transportation, storage, packing supplies and comprehensive removal checklists.
For more information about our range of relocation services or a free, no-obligation quote, don’t hesitate to get in touch with the team at Essex Removals today. We’re always happy to help.