For Freshmen. By Freshmen.
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Jun 19 2015
by Isabel Futral

5 Ways to Prepare to Go Out-of-State for College

By Isabel Futral - Jun 19 2015

If you’re heading off to a new state for school, chances are your summer to-do list is a little longer than your friends who are staying nearby. And while there are plenty of fun things that need to be checked off the list so you can give a proper goodbye to your home state, there are also a few more boring tasks that need to be completed before fall rolls around. No one wants to end up in a completely new environment unprepared!

1. Book plane tickets home.

This is imperative. Airline companies love to jack up prices right before the holidays and it will only get more expensive as the day gets closer. If you book Christmas flights right now, you’ll save the max money. Don’t forget to check your school’s finals schedule so you can figure out the earliest you can leave. Flight prices also jump up on weekends so if you’re already done with exams before the last Friday, it’s better to get ahead of the holiday rush.

2. Order online, but pick up in-person.

If you’re flying to your new state, move-in day is going to be a bit of a mess. It’s just not realistic to hope you can fit all your new dorm gear into one piece of luggage. Instead, do your back-to-school shopping online. Bed, Bath & Beyond, Best Buy, The Container Store, Office Depot, Target and more all allow you to shop online and then pick up your items in the store location of your choice.

3. Amazon Prime is your best friend.

Fun fact: Amazon offers a free six-month Prime membership for college students. Sign up for it in August, right when you move in, so when you realize all the dorm room necessities you forgot to purchase or had to leave at home, you can order replacements with free two-day shipping and without having to hassle your parents.

4. Figure out transportation.

If you’re far from home, you’re probably not going to have a car and, depending on your school, a lot of your friends might not, either. Look into what public transit options are available in your new city and familiarize yourself with them so you don’t get lost. Also, check to see if your school has Zipcar or, if you’re lucky, its own bus system.

5. Be ready for new weather.

Hopefully, you’re already looking into new wardrobe options. But you should also check how frequently it rains, snows or is sunny and even check in with the humidity and air pressure levels. An especially dry or wet state might require more than a shift from shorts to jeans. Also, be prepared to need a new beauty routine if the shift is extreme. I’m moving from California to Tennessee and I’m already looking into humidity-busting hair products.

Lead Image Credit: Akio Nambu

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Isabel Futral - Vanderbilt University

Isabel Futral is a freshman at Vanderbilt University majoring in Communication Studies. She spends most of her time watching basketball and wishing she was better at Spanish. Follow her on twitter @isabelfutral and favorite her tweets so she can pretend she's funny.

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