What to Bring to University

The first thing to remember when packing is that most freshers bring too much stuff. When you’re deciding what to bring to university, you need to balance these two realities:

  1. There’s no point in buying new things if you already have them at home. Save your money for what you need.
  2. You’re probably not going to a Uni which is so far away from a supermarket or town centre that you wouldn’t be able to get most things when you arrive.

So, when deciding what to bring to university, the guiding principle is to be practical. For example, how are you travelling? You not only have to bring stuff with you, but you’ll also have to bring it home to donate to charity at the end of the year.

Another great tip is organising communal items before you get to Uni. For example, with Abodus, you can find your flatmates in our private Facebook groups. Sometimes, you can all set up and chat in a WhatsApp group and agree on who is bringing what for your student flat in Leeds, Bristol or Liverpool.

Let’s Start With Clothes

This will be the bulk of your packing, so it’s good to plan what to bring to the university beforehand to save space.

  • Everyday Clothes. Remember to think about the season at the end of the term, not just the beginning. Layers can be a good way to accommodate different weather.
  • Nightclothes. Jammies, dressing gown and slippers/flip flops.
  • Work/Career. If you are going to be working or if you will be doing interviews or recruitment drives, you should think about bringing an appropriate outfit.
  • Sports. Many student accommodations have an in-built fitness suite, as your university has a huge choice of sports clubs. Bring your sports gear with you.
  • Hobby. If you have hobbies that you intend to follow in college, bring, whether that’s rock climbing, hockey or swimming, your gear.
  • Bags. You’ll need something big enough for your laptop, notes, books, and lunch and water bottle. You might also need something for weekends away or for sports. And it’s also handy to have a small bum bag or clutch for nights out.
  • Laundry bag. Something for collecting and bringing dirty clothes to the laundry.
  •  Mini Sewing kit. For those emergency repairs.

Important Documents

It’s a good idea to make digital/paper copies of everything and keep them safe.

  • Passport/ID: Spare passport photos can also come in handy.
  • Student Documents: Finance documents, Uni acceptance letter, accommodation agreement.
  • Insurance documents: Check out the insurance included in your accommodation.
  • Bank details: Bring a bank statement with you – you never know when you might need it to prove your home address.
  • Medical: NHS medical number.
  • Tax & Insurance: National insurance number.
  • Handy Phone Number List: If you lose your phone, this can be a Godsend; however, make sure your phone and contacts are backing up digitally.
  • Travel Cards 
  • Medical prescription: Copy of prescription.

Your Room

To make your room your own, you will need a mix of the essentials and some personal touches. Check out what your accommodation provides.

Room Essentials
  • Bed Linen, sheets, duvet covers and pillowcases (find out what size bed your room has first)
  • Mattress protector/base sheet
  • Duvet
  • Pillows
  • Blanket/throw – make sure it’s washable
  • Cushions – for a personal touch
  • Hangers – you’ll probably need more than provided

Pimping your room

  • Storage Boxes – handy to put your nicknacks in, and larger ones can double as stools or bedside table
  • Fairy lights – most halls will only allow battery run
  • Posters/pictures – remember, if you leave marks on walls or furniture, this might affect your deposit
  • Door Stop – keeping your door open can help you meet new friends
  • Plants (fake or real)

Bathroom & Grooming

Toiletries to take to uni:

  • Washcloth/sponge towels
  • Toothbrush and holder
  • Nail scissors/clippers
  • File razor/hair remover
  • Sanitary items
  • Contraception
  • Medicines: painkillers, cold medicine, antiseptic cream, plasters
  • Toiletries: shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, deodorant, toothpaste (consider being eco-friendly with shampoo bars, soap, solid deo & tooth tabs, which are kinder to the environment and weight of your bags), moisturiser, makeup & remover
  • Washbag
  • Loo Roll (enough until you get to the shops)
  • Ear plugs – just in case your flatmate is having a noisy night

Stationary & Study Stuff

Textbooks. Buy the essentials and try to use a library or share with new friends for the non-essential. Search online for second-hand sites, as on-campus bookstores can be expensive. Also, for some courses, you need the up-to-date edition; for others, older editions are fine.
Folders & Files. Bring a couple to get you started; you can always get more when you understand how your course modules work.
Plastic wallets
A4/5 paper and/or a notebook
Academic diary/planner (or use your phone calendar)
Pencil case & pens etc/  Pencils, Colours, Pens, Ruler Highlighters
Stapler/paper clips
Post It Notes/Page tabs

Stuff Particular to your course, e.g. calculator/drawing board/thesaurus
Back-Up for your Files. Set up your backup system, e.g. Google Docs/Dropbox, a USB stick/external hard drive



Cutlery & Crockery 


Check with your accommodation provider what’s included, but most students will end up buying some of the following.

  • 2x mugs, a bowl, and a plate of glasses
  • sharp knife
  • bottle opener/corkscrew
  • tea towel Water bottle

Cooking Utensils


If you are sharing a common kitchen, it’s up to you if you bring these with you or wait to organise with your flatmates to buy these together.

  • Saucepan Frying pan
  • Baking trays: including a flat one for pizza
  • 1x sieve/colander
  • Utensils: sharp knives, grater, peeler, tin opener, wooden spoon, ladle
  • Chopping board
  • Tupperware (always handy to have your own and preferably distinguishable from your flatmates)
  • Oven gloves
  • Cloth/sponge/scouring pad
  • Cleaners: surface spray, washing up liquid
  • Cling film/kitchen foil
  • Washing powder


Check with your accommodation provider what’s included, but most students will end up buying some of the following.

  • 2x mugs, a bowl, and a plate of glasses
  • sharp knife
  • bottle opener/corkscrew
  • tea towel
  • Water bottle

Check Out Your Uni Delivery Service

For Abodus Students, you can buy and order from Unikit with a 10% discount. This will be delivered to your room before you move in.

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