5 Tips for Moving Into College Dorms

a packed car ready for moving into college

Hey y’all! Happy Tuesday! The moving post is happening after all (see last week’s post), because now it’s actually relevant to me. As you’re reading this I’m probably moving back into my college dorm already! I can’t believe it and the now past writer version of me is now freaking out a little because it’s finally happening.

If you’re packing up for school, know that I fully sympathize with you. Because I live on campus, I have to move myself in every fall. I’m not a light packer, but I do have to be efficient as I haul everything I need in my little sedan. Since I’ve had to get strategic with moving, at least I can say I’ve learned something along the way! So today, I thought I’d share five tips I’ve found over the last couple years on moving into college.

College Moving Tip #1: Make a Packing List

This might seem obvious, but if you aren’t making a list (and checking it twice), I can guarantee you’re going to forget something! Between clothes, bedding, toiletries, cleaning supplies, and decorations, you’ve got a lot to think about. And especially if you’re moving out of state or far away, if you forget something, it’s a pain to get it.

If the idea of writing down everything you need to bring seems overwhelming, search college dorm room packing lists online or on your school’s website! None of them are going to fit your needs perfectly, but they’re all great places to start and add to.

Moving Tip #2: Pack by Level of Need

Every year, my first night moving into my dorm is spent pulling apart boxes and putting together my room. But I don’t always want to unpack everything I brought, so I pack most of my things in one of two ways.

  1. I pack like items with like. This way if I’m trying to find something in my pile of things that I haven’t yet dug through, I have some idea of where it is.
  2. I pack by level of need. If I know I’ll need stuff right away, like toiletries or some changes of clothes, I’ll put those things in easier to reach places.

Moving Tip #3: Bring a Cart!

This move-in tip might seem simple, but having a dolly or fold-able wagon can cut your move-in time in half! I’ve had times where I’ve moved in and had to park far from the actual dorm. Without a wagon, I’d only be able to carry in things by hand. Bringing something to hold things for you allows you to carry in more items and makes it easier to take in bulky things (example: I have a Rubbermaid bin and there’s no way I could get that sucker in without my wagon). My wagon is worth every inch of the space it takes up in my car.

Moving Tip #4: Short on Space? Don’t Bring Everything

If you’re driving yourself to school or have a small car, sometimes it makes sense to leave things behind. I’m not saying forget your laptop or don’t bring a jacket just to save on space. Instead be a little more strategic about what you bring. Wait to stock up on snacks until after you unpack. Leave some toiletries behind (which saves you from packing some home later!) and go to the store in town. And if you know you’re going home at least once during the semester, maybe wait to pack every single sweater until it’s a little cooler.

Moving Tip #5: Ask Yourself Why

If you’ve followed all these tips and are still struggling to stuff everything into your car, maybe it’s time to look at what you thought was essential and see if it really is. Ask yourself:

  1. Why am I bringing this? Is it for a potential event, for everyday use, or because you like it?
  2. How much will I use this? If you think you’ll get only one or two chances to use it, if that, you might want to hold off for now.
  3. Is this something I can easily replace? It could be this is something that you could find at the store once you get to college. Or, maybe you already own something that would serve just as well in its place!

Whether you’re moving into dorms or somewhere off-campus, I hope these 5 tips for moving into college help! No matter if it’s your first year in college or your fifth, I wish you all the luck this year. 🙂

Got any packing tips of your own? Feel free to share them with us in the comments section!

Until next time,

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