Everyone knows what to bring to college. There are tons of websites out there with articles listing everything you’ll need to bring to college. But what they don’t tell you is what is not necessary to bring. When moving in to a college dorm, it is super easy to overpack. It’s just like overpacking for a vacation, except you tend to bring your whole house to college, as you never know what you will or won’t use. Here is a list of stuff that should be left at home! These items are not necessary, and simply just a waste of space in your already tiny dorm room.
1. Iron / Ironing Board
This takes up too much room, simple as that. Nobody irons their clothes anymore unless they’re going to a job interview or a wedding. That’s about it. Perfectly pleated pants are a thing of the past, and so are chunky irons and ironing boards. Where would an iron and ironing board be stored in a tiny dorm room? Trick question; the answer is nowhere. If you still crave clothes without wrinkles, try getting a mini steamer. Mini steamers are prefect for storing in a cramped dorm room. A mini steamer is also way easier to use. Just fill it with water and turn it on. Then, wait until steam starts coming out and hold it up to your clothes. The moisture from the steam makes the wrinkles vanish. Another hack is using a hair straightener, but this is more of a last resort technique. A dryer is another option, as most dryers have a wrinkle setting. But, as far as irons go, don’t bother bringing them to college.
2. Every Item In Your Wardrobe
There is no reason to bring every clothing item that you own. There is no room for all of it in a tiny dorm closet. Use your space wisely. When first moving in, bring clothes that are good for the end of summer/fall. Bring a few items for colder weather just in case it gets unusually cold. Organize your clothes by season. Swap the clothes out whenever returning home, depending on the current season. This will save a ton of space. Bring only your favorite clothes and clothes that can be paired with various outfits. It’s also important to keep in mind that, more than half the time, most college students only wear sweatpants or comfortable clothing. It is important to bring more clothes that you will wear regularly, rather than going-out or nicer clothes. Bring one or two business casual outfits and a dressier outfit to keep in your closet just in case. It never hurts to have it, but these should not take up most of your small closet. Be realistic and bring clothes your know you will wear.
3. Chunky Kitchen Appliances
Chunky appliances are the biggest waste of space. If you choose to bring any kitchen appliances, bring ones that you will truly use. The best ones to bring would be a coffee maker, mini fridge, and microwave. Do not bring a toaster, microwave oven or a blender. The chances of using these items every day is slim to none. Take advantage of the food courts. Usually they have tons of options, and most schools require a meal plan. If you paid for the meal plan, you might as well use it and get your money’s worth out of it. Most dorm rooms have kitchens on the floor or for the hall. These come with a stove, an oven, a sink, and typically another microwave. Having a shared kitchen is awesome, simply because it keeps the mess out of your dorm room. Most college students do not have time to cook or have access to a full-blown grocery store, so take advantage of the resources the university provides you.
Printers are pricey and bulky, and are simply additional unnecessary expenses that a college student does not need to tack on. Instead, save the cash! A printer would take up the whole top of the desk in your dorm, trust us. Some college classes are fully online, so, depending on the major, there are some students who could justify having a printer. But, for the average student, keeping a printer in a dorm is unnecessary. Dorms usually have printers available in the building for dorm residents. These tend to be free, or relatively cheap at least — around a dollar or less to print. Campus libraries also have printers available for students to use as well. Some colleges give their students so many free prints a semester, depending on the university. Spending a few dollars a semester on printing is cheaper than buying a printer itself, not to mention the expensive ink. Plus, if you are the one dorm resident with a printer, everyone will want to borrow it and use up all the ink.
5. Pots and Pans
As mentioned earlier, most college students do not have time to cook. A bowl of microwaved ramen noodles becomes gourmet food. Pots and pans just take up space that could be used to store other necessities. It is worth bringing a few dishes, but not pots and pans. Bringing a small set of dishes would be perfect — just 2 bowls, 2 plates, 2 utensils. A cup or bottle for water is also a good idea. Everything else can be left at home. There is no need to be the Rachel Ray of your dorm floor. The dining hall offers fresh cooked meals that do not require you lifting a finger, or cleaning up after. Take advantage of this; they usually have good dessert options to check out, too.
The biggest issue people have when moving to college is overpacking. If you are a first-time college student, or the first in your family to move away to college, it is understandable that you might not know what dorm items you need for living away at school. The biggest advice is take advantage of the resources that the university provides for their dorm hall residents, like the dining hall and free printers. It’s also important to learn that it is okay to leave stuff at home. It will be there upon your return. If you leave an item at home and find out later that you need it, grab it the next time you’re going home. Pack lightly, you will thank yourself when moving out.