Now is really the time to make the list and check it twice. No matter how many years you’ve been going to college, or if this is your first time, the list below that I found on a site written on suite101.com pretty much covers a very lengthy list of items for college students to bring with them upon their move away from home for college.

Things get crazy and you might think “I’ll wait a few more weeks to just before I leave.” But don’t do it. You’re going to procrastinate because many of you may not want to leave. It gets tough to leave your friends and the last thing you can think of is your Walmart grocery list and all the packing you need to do.

Buy it now and leave them all in the bags you got at the store. You can take care of final packing later. UPS is very convenient and helpful when it comes to shipping things, including furniture. They can even pack for you, for a fee. ūüôā

So print this blog article, or mark down everything I have below. I relate to a ton fo these and wish I had them before I loved.


Air freshener                     Alarm clock                       Batteries

Blanket/comforter        Bottle/can opener           Extension cords

Flashlight                           Fun tack                                 Hangers

Headphones                     Lock box                                Magnets

Mattress pad/egg crate               Outlet extenders                      Photos

Pillows/pillowcases              Posters w/poster tape            Power strip

Sheets (extra long 80×34)¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Shower caddy¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Shower slippers

Storage cubes                          Suction cups                        Telephone

Towels                                        Washcloths                          Wastebasket


Bed lamp (clip-on)                Bicycle & lock                      Bookends

Bulletin board                         Broom/dustpan                  Fan

Floor pillows                            Lap desk                            Nightlight

Robe/slippers                                 Wipe-off board


Brush/comb             Chapstick                                       Cologne/perfume

Cosmetics                  Cotton swabs/balls                    Dental floss

Deodorant                 Eyeglasses/contacts/repair kit/cleaning supplies

Hair dryer                 Manicure set                 Mirror

Moisturizer                          Mouthwash                                    Nail clippers

Nail polish/remover        Prescription medications         Razor/blades

Shaving gel/aftershave          Shampoo/Conditioner              Soap/holder/liquid soap

Tissues                             Toothbrush/toothpaste               Vitamins

Side Note: Make sure you can differentiate priority versus optional on many of the items.

Laundry & Cleaning Supplies


Glass cleaner                           Iron/small ironing board                        Light bulbs

Multipurpose spray-on cleaner              Paper towels                         Sponge

Trash bags


Bleach/colorfast bleach substitute                  Color safe sheets

Dryer sheets/fabric softener                    Laundry bag                       Laundry detergent

Rolls of quarters                               Stain stick

Food, First Aid & Sewing

Coffee maker                         Dish detergent                    Drinks/drink mixes

Glasses/mugs                        Hot pot                                   Knives, forks, spoons

Plates, bowls

Other stuff

Grill                                 Microwave                              Popcorn maker

Refrigerator                    Toaster                                      Toaster/oven


Most schools now offer rental programs for a combo microwave/refrig for the dorm room. The roommates can share the cost and you then don’t have to worry about maintaining it, packing it and storing it all summer.

Cutlery/dinnerware – your child doesn’t need china and silver flatware, but even college students appreciate “real” forks and plates (K-Mart, Target, Walmart – all have servicable sets for around $20 for service for 4).

First Aid Kit

ACE (elastic-type bandage)               Adhesive tape                       Alcohol

Aloe                                                              Antibiotic cream                 Band-Aids

Cold/allergy medicine                        Cough drops/syrup             Dental gel

Headache remedy                                 Nasal spray                             Pain reliever

Peroxide                                                   Petroleum jelly                       Thermometer

Throat spray                                           Tweezers

Tool Kit

Duct tape                 Hammer                        Nails

Pliers                         Screwdrivers: Flathead and Phillips/vScrews

**I would also suggest having a passport made just in case.   Also make copies of your license, social security card, birth certificate and a recent picture of you. You just never know!**

Did I miss anything? I’m trying to think back to my years in college and what I forgot and really wish I had. These items are important and really drive the level of comfort your son or daughter (or you) have when moving away to somewhere new and strange.

But let me know if I missed anything.


Your Success is My Success


Keith Lipke is a careers and college recruiter, coach, mentor and blogger at    The Career Closet. His passion is to educate, inspire, and give hope to young people along their journey who need it upon their search for the right career.



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