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Packing for College

Going to college almost always requires moving—whether to a dormitory room, fraternity or sorority residence, or a rented house or apartment.  And, moving requires packing.

First and foremost, don’t pack what you don’t need!  Unless one is living in a house or normal-sized apartment, space is probably going to be a lot more limited than it was at home.  Storage will be a factor, too, as some rooms may have very little, if any, closet space.  This is where a list may be of great assistance.

Moving to college is very similar to moving from one residence to another, with a few differences. For instance, instead of using moving boxes, buy storage containers that can be used in your college residence, and pack the items for which the container is intended IN the container.  You will only have to place the container in its designated area.

When considering storage space, look down.  Spaces under beds, sinks (if it stays dry) and other places can be utilized, especially when the container is designed to fit in those areas.  A little measuring may be in order.

A backpack can be pressed into temporary service, or it can be packed with those items that may be needed on the first day of classes.  Your hands will remain free to carry those wonderful, stackable, storage containers that you bought.

If you are using a laptop computer, put it, along with any accessories, wires, cables, etc., in a storage case designed for just this purpose.  If the case is big enough, and is designed to be easily moved, the printer can also be put in there.  Otherwise, pack the printer carefully, label it appropriately, and bring it along. 

Bed linens, towels, and other similar items can serve as cushions for electronics.  This will minimize any chances of damage during the move.

Pack clothing just as if you were going on a trip, using regular luggage.  If it is of the rolling variety, so much the better.  Use the cosmetic or overnight case to pack your bathroom and make-up necessities.  Once you have arrived at your room and unpacked, the luggage can be sent home with parents, OR, if there is room, it can be used for extra storage space.

Heavy objects (books, DVDs, etc.) require a little extra thought.  Keep in mind that these items will have to be carried from house to car to room, so don’t make them too heavy.  Fill only about one-third to one-half of a container with heavy objects, then use the remaining space for lighter items, such as towels, bed linens, and other things with minimal weight.  Make sure, no matter how many things are in the box, that it can be carried.