According to a Recent Grad, Don’t Bring These 13 Things to College

Are you having difficulty knowing what to bring to college? This is often a stressful time for incoming freshmen, but here’s a list of things you might think you need for your dorm room but probably won’t use very often, if at all. It is super important to remember that dorm rooms are typically tiny, and you will probably not have a lot of storage space.

Here are 13 things most freshmen don’t need to bring to college.

Here are 13 things better left at home

1. More than two bath towels

One thing I remember from my freshman year was that I didn’t need more than two towels. The rest just sat in my closet while I typically rotated between the same two towels when one was being washed.

2. Bulky luggage

I recommend only bringing collapsible luggage that can be stored under your bed easily because it will take up much less space than hard-sided luggage.

3. Unnecessary kitchen appliances

As a freshman, you will likely eat most of your meals at a dining hall, so you won’t need to bring kitchen appliances such as a toaster. Some students like to bring a coffee maker, but I would not recommend this unless you are genuinely an avid coffee drinker. I have a severe caffeine addiction, and I was fine without a coffee maker and just drank coffee in the dining halls.

4. Too much clothing and too many shoes

You do not need to bring your full closet of clothes from home. I suggest only bringing about half of your clothes, but ensure you have a good mix of casual and classy clothes. The same thing goes for shoes; due to limited space, it is a good idea only to bring shoes you wear often and not every pair you own.

5. Printer

Printers typically take up a lot of space, and you don’t need one since there are printers in most buildings on campus, which will likely be a short walk away. I would usually print my papers on my way to or from class.

6. Iron/Ironing board

An ironing board takes up quite a bit of space, even a compact one, and it is unlikely that you will need to use it more than twice a semester. Instead, I would recommend a steamer, or even better — you can probably borrow an iron or steamer from someone else in the dorm.

7. Throw pillows

These are probably one of the most unnecessary things I brought to college. You will probably only use them to take a cute dorm picture and never use them otherwise.

8. Candles

I was unaware that candles are prohibited in almost every college dorm.

9. Items of value

Do not bring your diamond earrings or anything you would regret if lost. It’s easy to lose or misplace things, so leave things of value at home.

10. Television

While some may think having television to relax and watch movies with friends is a good idea, I don’t see it this way. Having a television can annoy your roommate if you want to watch television and your roommate is trying to study. Plus, most shows are now on Netflix or other streaming services, which can be watched from your laptop or iPad. And you can use headphones to watch without bothering your roommate.

11. Duplicates of shareable items

Check in with your roommate before moving in to see who will bring a mini fridge or microwave. Instead of splitting the cost, it is best to have one person buy the fridge and one person buys the microwave so that after the year is over, whoever buys each item can bring that item with them to their next dorm or apartment.

12. Many books

Even if you are an avid reader, there is not much free time to do leisure reading because you will be so busy with classes, homework, and hanging out with friends. I would recommend bringing at most three books for personal reading.

13. Miscellaneous school supplies

You needed certain supplies for each subject in high school, such as colored pencils, rulers, and more. You will likely take most notes in college on a laptop, so I would bring a few good pencils, pens, and highlighters.

Enjoy your college experience and make the most of your time — it goes very quickly.

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About Madeleine Korn

Madeleine Korn is a recent graduate from the University of California, Santa Barbara. After graduating, she worked in marketing for a cybersecurity company for a year and a half. For the past year, she has been traveling the world while volunteering in hostels. Starting this fall, she will be teaching English in Spain. To learn more, here are her social media accounts: TikTok and Instagram. She loves writing and creating videos and really enjoys working for Grown and Flown!

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