As it comes time to start packing for college, nothing will be more important to you in the long run than saving space in your dorm. There are so many useful storage and decor options for college students that are compact and concise. However, there are also some things from home that we're so used to having with us that we think we'll need them in our dorm too. Usually, we don't. Here are ten things that most people really will not need to bring their first year of college.
It might sound cute to have a little sofa or some beanbag chairs to accommodate friends, but you won't have room for any of that. Don't even bring any extra desk chairs. You don't need them. Your college will give you all the furniture that is necessary (and frankly, all the furniture that could fit in your room). You'd be a lot better off utilizing any extra room space for more storage.
This seems a little weird, but honestly only pack around 3 of your favorite casual t-shirts. Since you only ever wear those to sleep, workout or relax in, save the space in your bag for some nicer shirts to wear when you want to look good for class or a more formal outing. You'll get 90 free t-shirts upon your arrival to college anyway.
3. Cleaning Supplies
Unless you're living in a suite where you're in charge of cleaning your own bathroom, cleaning supplies are an easy way to use up a lot of space. Instead of a hefty bottle of Windex with a roll of paper towels, opt for some space-saving Clorox wipes to get rid of any inevitable late-night coffee spills.
4. Fairy Lights
This one is sad because of how cozy they make your room look, but most colleges specifically ban them for fire hazard concerns. Don't even bother packing them and using up that luggage space. Besides, if you notice other people in your hall getting away with hanging them, you can always go buy some after you get there. The same goes for big tapestries.
5. Desk Accessories
I have this gold octagonal thing from Target that looks so good on my desk at home, and I desperately want to bring it to college. But should I? Absolutely not. It might be cute when you first move in to have the perfect desk aesthetic with little accessories and pencil holders, but after a month all of that stuff will be thrown on the floor and replaced by scattered papers. I also don't think I've used a pencil for an assignment since 7th grade, so maybe its time to leave the novelty pencil holders at home anyway.
6. Non-Seasonal Clothing
If you're arriving to school in the fall, bring a lot of autumn colors and layering pieces. Don't pack a bikini and sandals for the fall semester. Especially if you can go home during winter and/or spring break and switch out some clothing for that of another season.
7. Big Storage Containers
These could be a huge waste of money if you buy them before you see how your dorm is set up. Don't order four under-bed storage units or a big set of plastic containers if they're not appropriate for the size or layout of your dorm. Wait until you get there and scope things out first.
You'll get enough of these in college, don't you think? Physical books take up quite a bit of space, and unless reading for fun is one of your very top priorities, you won't have much time to do it in college. If you're that dedicated, you've probably already got your whole reading list on a Kindle or something already anyway. Don't bring any physical books--or else limit yourself to a personal favorite, and maybe another that you're really determined to read.
9. Reusable Food Containers/Mugs
These are tempting to bring in order to keep leftover food from going bad, but sticking with styrofoam take-out boxes and plastic cups is best. Cleaning out food containers in your hall's bathroom is a pretty unappealing option, and although mugs are a little easier to just rinse out, they can take up a lot of precious space in your dorm.
You've probably seen this one on lists like these a lot, and I admit that at first I was very opposed to the idea of not bringing my own printer. Why not? It would save me the time of walking somewhere else to print, and I can print as much as I want. But then I actually started thinking about everything a printer entails: the expensive ink, the endless supply of printing paper you'll need to have handy, and the prospect of some type of unfixable paper jam. To avoid worrying about all of this, just leave it home. Your college has them available for a reason.
Some of these things might be really useful for you depending on where you go to college, or you might just think that some of these things are a good idea to bring. If so, go for it! However, these are things that could definitely be omitted from your packing list to save space in your luggage and your room.
Lead Image Credit: Nataly A via Flickr Creative Commons