Delaware Today College Guide 2012: Packing for College

Thanks to the evolution of portable electronics, gone are the days of big, clunky computers and stereos, not to mention those plastic milk crates filled with books, CDs or (God forbid) vinyl albums. Other than that, though, the essentials remain the same—like proper seasonal clothing, toiletries, bedding and linens, and various school supplies. Here are a few tips to help you along.

Make a serious list. You may already have many of the things you’ll need. Sort through your stuff well in advance and make some firm decisions on what goes, what stays, and what to buy along the way.

Know what’s a no-no. Restricted items vary depending on the college. Make sure you find out what they are before you go on a late-summer shopping spree.

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Avoid overpacking. If you haven’t used it in the past few months, chances are you don’t need to bring it along. You may even want to keep seasonal items at home until your next break.

Think green. Many colleges are asking incoming students to opt for environmentally friendly products and energy-efficient appliances. And be sure to check out your local thrift store for gently used items.

Before you buy, know what your dorm has to offer. Some even have communal kitchens and computing labs.

Avoid multiples. Talk to your roommate(s) in advance to avoid a glut of refrigerators, microwaves, TVs and other appliances.

Check out your room in advance. Some floor plans are even available online.

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Consider the “S” word. As in storage. Invest in some heavy-duty plastic containers.

Avoid the move-in day rush. Consider checking in early or, if possible, when others have already finished.

Consider the challenge of unpacking. A separate bag of essential items is a good idea for the first few days on campus.


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