What to Bring to a College Dorm

If you’re preparing for college, you’re probably wondering what you need to take with you. What you take with you will depend on who you are and where you’re headed. But no matter where you study, there are some things all college students need. So we put together this list of what to bring to a college dorm to help you get started packing! If you’re wondering how to rent a storage unit for a college student, we can also help you with that!

Is Your Dorm Furnished or Unfurnished?

Renting a furnished or unfurnished dorm is the first question you need to answer when going off to college. If you rent a furnished dorm, you’ll need to bring fewer things. Usually, a furnished dorm will have a bed, desk, and chair for your personal use. In small, furnished dorms, that’s pretty much it, just enough to sleep and study.

In larger, apartment-type dorms, you‘ll find living room furniture, including sofas, chairs, and tables. You can say the same thing for the kitchen, where a kitchen table and chairs will usually be provided. Also, a refrigerator and stove are typically included in a larger, apartment-style dorm.

On the other hand, unfurnished basic dorms usually have nothing but basic fixtures like a toilet and sink. You’ll need to bring furniture, including beds, desks, desk chairs, footstools, and tables.

what to bring to your college dorm room

Everything You Need to Bring to your College Dorm

Furnished or not, there are a lot of basics you’ll need to bring to your dorm. After all, you’ll be living there. Having your necessities (and some luxuries) available will make your dorm feel cozy. We’ve got several different lists of them for you below.

Clothes to Bring to Your College Dorm

You’ll need plenty of clothing, especially if you go to school where it gets cold. Your usual daily clothing like socks, underwear, shirts, and pants are all necessary. Then, depending on the weather, you’ll also need:

  • Sweatpants and sweatshirts
  • Pajamas
  • Light and heavy sweaters
  • A light and a heavier jacket
  • Gloves, hats, and a scarf if it’s going to get cold
  • A pair of snow boots
  • Sneakers
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Dress shoes
  • A swimsuit if you go to school somewhere near the beach or with a pool
  • Rain gear if it rains a lot, plus an umbrella
  • Backpack
  • Any sports equipment you use

Linens and Laundry Supplies You’ll Need

You’ll be doing the laundry yourself at school, including your clothing, towels, linens, and sheets. If this is your first time doing your own laundry, make sure to learn how first! You need quite a few other items for sleeping, too, including:

  • Sheets and pillowcases
  • Bath towels and kitchen towels
  • One or two pillows
  • A mattress pad
  • A nice comforter
  • One or two blankets
  • A good size laundry basket
  • Laundry detergent, fabric softener, and anything else you use to wash your clothes
what to bring to your college dorm room

Studying Supplies to Bring to College

The main reason to go to college is to study and learn a skill or trade. To do that, you’ll need quite a few studying supplies, including:

  • A desk
  • A stapler and staples
  • Printing paper
  • Lots of pens and pencils
  • Notebooks and folders
  • Index cards
  • Sticky notes
  • Scissors
  • Highlighters
  • Tape
  • Rubber bands
what to bring to your college dorm room

Toiletries and Grooming Supplies to Bring to Your College Dorm

Whatever you need in your bathroom at home, you’ll need in your dorm room bathroom. For many people, that’s a lot of stuff, including:

  • Soap, shampoo, and conditioner
  • A toothbrush, toothpaste, and dental floss
  • Combs, brushes, hair gel, and a dryer
  • Tweezers and nail clippers
  • Your favorite razor and shaving cream
  • Q-Tips
  • Shower flip-flops
  • Vitamins, aspirin, antacid, and any other supplements.
  • A first aid kit

Kitchen Supplies

If your dorm has a kitchen, you’ll need kitchen supplies to prepare meals and clean up afterward. Even without a kitchen, some items are still recommended to bring to your college dorm, including:

  • A can and bottle opener
  • Basic silverware
  • A coffee mug and water bottle
  • Unbreakable bowls, plates, and cups
  • Plastic bags and food storage containers
  • Paper towels and napkins
  • Trash bags
  • Spare light bulbs
  • Dish soap and a sponge

Electronics to Bring to Your College Dorm

There will be times when you can relax and enjoy yourself in your college dorm. During those times, you’ll want to have your favorite electronics with you, including:

  • A TV or large computer monitor
  • Your laptop computer
  • Portable speakers
  • Ethernet and HDMI cords
  • A surge protector
  • Headphones
  • A small apartment refrigerator

Furniture (In an Unfurnished Dorm)

This last list of things to bring to your college dorm is (mostly) for unfurnished dorms. It’s also big stuff that typically won’t fit in a regular car. That means you’ll need a pickup or small moving truck to move it back and forth to school. Some of the most important pieces of big furniture to bring to your college dorm include:

Small, Unfurnished Dorm

  • A single bed
  • Night table
  • Desk
  • Desk chair

Larger, Apartment Style Unfinished Dorm

  • Sofas
  • Lounge chairs
  • Throw rugs
  • Coffee tables
  • Kitchen table and chairs
  • A bed (make sure it fits in your dorm room before moving)
what to bring to your college dorm room

What to Do With your College Stuff Between Semesters?

Many college students and their parents have one big question: what to do with their things between semesters? Also, what to do with your college stuff if, for example, you study abroad for a semester? Do you lug everything back home, or is there a better solution? Are there storage units for college students?

Yes, at iStorage, we do have storage units for college students! In fact, we rent storage units to college students across the country! Clean, safe, and close to many college campuses, our affordable college storage units come in a variety of affordable sizes. If you’re wondering how to rent one, click this link. It’s our blog that explains exactly how to rent a storage unit to store your college stuff.

We hope today’s article was helpful and gave you the info on what to bring to your college dorm. From all of us at iStorage, we wish you a great year at school! Study hard, don’t party too much, and be safe!