When you are thinking about moving into university halls or private accommodation in first year, it can be stressful deciding what to pack. So, I will share a few of the must haves which I found to be useful. Remember not to get too obsessed with packing everything because if you forget something you can either get it sent on, pick it up when you go back home, or buy it when you get to Stoke-on-Trent (which has lots and lots of shops). Like a lot of students, in the first few weeks Amazon prime student membership will probably become your best friend.
We will start with the obvious things first (and just so you know, this can be useful to international students but isn’t specifically tailored to you, as I don’t know how much you can bring with you and what you are allowed to travel with):
Bedding – Sheets, duvet, pillows, bedding sets, and some people also like to have a mattress topper (this depends how much you like your comforts).
Kitchen equipment – you will need basics like a frying pan, saucepan, oven tray, and some plates, bowls and utensils. After that, it really depends how much you plan to cook and bake as to what you want to take.
Bathroom stuff – if you have your own bathroom, you will need to take anything you want in there. For everyone else, you will need to take toiletries etc.
University stuff – this includes anything you would usually use to study, both at university and at home, plus a bag to take everything to and from lectures and seminars. There are lots of computers on campus which you can use but if you can buy a laptop or tablet then it would be an immense help for you. Finally, the thing I found to be really helpful was a printer. I realise that this is not as necessary as a laptop and I know lots of people who don’t have one, but if you can afford one then I would recommend it. It doesn’t have to be very expensive but it is very useful for printing off slides and forms and generally bits and pieces for your course.
Now the less obvious and less vital things, but things which you may wish to get if you have them around or have some money to get them.
Decorations for your room – Student rooms are quite boring it must be said. This can actually be a good thing because it is a blank canvas for you to decorate as you please. However, make sure whatever you use to decorate can be taken off and will not leave marks at the end of the term, otherwise you will lose your deposit and may be charged extra. White tack and Command products are your friends here, as they are made for rented accommodation where you can’t make any lasting changes. Photos, postcards, bunting, posters etc. help to make the room a little more your own. You could even change it up with the seasons and add some Halloween, Christmas or Easter decorations if you want!
Earplugs – If you are someone who finds it hard to sleep with noise, then you might want to invest in some good earplugs!
Home comforts – Anything that reminds you of home like cushions, blankets, pictures of family, the same biscuits you always have at home, your mum’s recipe for your favourite meal. It will really help when the home sickness kicks in or when you have had a really bad day.