9 things that will save your life when moving onto campus!
This post is all about college move in day.
You probably landed on this post about college move in day because you’re an incoming freshman, or the parent of one. First of all, congrats! Starting college or having your kid start college is one of the most exciting chapters in life.
That being said, it can also be a little scary. Especially move in day.
What do you do about this?
Plain and simple, you prepare.
In this post, I’m laying out everything you need to know about college move-in day so that you can have the smoothest dorm move in ever!
This post is all about college move in day.
This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll earn a commission if you purchase through my link, at no extra cost to you. Our full disclosure policy is pretty boring, but you can read it here.
TOP COLLEGE MOVE IN DAY TIPS
1. Pack with a checklist, not by memory
Why try to make a packing list yourself when you can get one for free online and save yourself the hassle?
Before you start packing, a surefire way to make sure you don’t forget any important items is to download our free college packing list. We worked really hard on creating this to make sure you don’t forget ANYTHING.
It tells you exactly what you need to bring to college, and all the items are organized into different categories to make it super easy for you to keep track of it all. It also has tons of blank spaces so that you can personalize it and add other stuff you wanna bring!
2. Get these move-in day essentials
You might have thought of everything you want to bring to college, but what about the actual move in day essentials?
Here’s a specific college move in day checklist of things you’ll want to bring for the move-in day itself:
- Extra large moving bags (these make your stuff so much easier to carry in case you can’t park super close to your dorm)
- Foldable platform cart (great way to move your stuff but takes up next to no space in your car!)
- Portable fan – if your dorm room isn’t air conditioned, it’ll get REALLY hot when you’re moving in and have a bunch of people getting sweaty in the dorm room.
- Tool set
- First aid kit – just in case!!
- Door stopper
- A change of clothes, so you have something on hand to change into if you get sweaty (parents will wanna bring a change of clothes too)
- Water bottle
- Disinfectant wipes
- Handheld broom and dust pan
- Glass cleaner
- Microfiber cloths
- Garbage bags
- Air freshener (this plug-in one is great if you wanna keep your dorm smelling fresh)
- Handheld vacuum (optional, but if you happen to have one, it’s useful for nooks and crannies so that it’s not dusty after you move your stuff in)
3. Have an organized packing method
4. Check dorm and move-in day details before check-in
Move in day will already be overwhelming enough, so make sure you gather as much information as you can beforehand.
It’s not just about figuring what room you’re in and when to show up. You’ll also want to check out rules on what you can and can’t bring, where on campus your dorm room is, how to access it, and where to park.
Ultimately, your school will provide you with all the information you need ahead of time, so just make sure you’re checking your email frequently and find whatever information you can on your school’s website.
5. Clean your room before moving in
This is one of the most overlooked tips but you do NOT want to skip over cleaning out your dorm room.
Yes, it probably will be pretty clean when you get there. But you don’t know how well, and you don’t know how clean the previous student was. Plus, you won’t get another chance to deep clean it for the rest of the semester, so it’s better safe than sorry.
I recommend bringing the cleaning products I shared in tip #2 – that’s really all you need!
RELATED POST – Easiest Cleaning Schedule for Roommates (+ FREE PRINTABLES)
6. Don’t take your hanging clothes off their hangers
This will save you SO MUCH TIME.
When you’re moving hanging clothes, there is no point in taking them all off their hangers just to put them back on when you get to your dorm. Instead, organize your clothes into groups of 5-10 items and slip a garbage bag overtop of them. That way, when you get to your dorm, you simply need to take the garbage bags off and stick the clothes on hangers.
Plus, these space-saving hangers are literally a life saver for small dorm closets if you have a lot of clothes to hang!!
7. Keep a list of things you forgot as you unpack
Forgetting things here and there is inevitable.
Have you ever shown up to a trip and realized you forgot toothpaste, your cleanser, or your phone charger?
So just have a notepad and pen on hand (or just use your notes app on your phone) to take note of things you may have forgotten (or not known you needed) as you realize them. That way, it’ll be really easy to hit the store quickly later without worrying about forgetting something again.
8. Discuss preferences with your roommate AHEAD OF TIME
First-come, first-serve might sound fair, but if you’re the first to show up and you take all the best of everything in the room before your roommate gets a say, you probably aren’t making the best impression of yourself.
It might not be practical to wait until they show up either, though.
So, if you’re able to contact them in advance to talk these things out, that’s always the safest option.
Plus, then you can coordinate splitting the cost of items like a mini-fridge or coffee maker, and get to know them a little ahead of time. Win-win.
RELATED POST – Questions to Ask a Roommate to Become Good Friends
9. Figure out what you’re going to do for meals
First of all, eat ahead of time. It’ll be a super busy day, and it’s hard to know ahead of time all of what happens on college move in day. So it’s a good idea to eat breakfast before you leave or while you’re on the road.
But even throughout the day, you’ll need a plan for what you’re going to eat.
Bringing snacks is a smart idea to tide you over. Maybe you’ll want to just bring lunch with you as well, or maybe you’ll prefer to go out.
One thing I will say about eating on college move in day is that while the dining hall is always an option, you’ll be eating that food A LOT so you might thank yourself later if you decide to eat out somewhere else on move in day instead.