So today I have a guest post for you today, and it's all about moving to college. I briefly talked about it last year, but this year I'll be having more posts about it, hopefully! I have Olivia from Liv Love Laugh talking about tips for packing up for college. Check her out and follow her on Twitter and Instagram as well: @livlivinglife
Hey there Livin and Lovin readers! I don’t know about you, but moving in to college—especially freshman year, but also every time I move—can be very stressful. To reduce the stress, here are eight tips to make packing a little easier, so you have more time for living and loving.
Seriously, if you have the space, it can’t hurt to start a month in advance. As you collect things you’ll need in college—at graduation parties, with gift money, on shopping trips—start organizing it in a corner of your room. If you’re planning to take stuff from your house, like batteries or lightbulbs, begin to gather it as it comes to mind.
Speaking of which, you should have a master list. This website was very helpful to me and a lot of people I know as we got ready to pack, or you can make your own list. But having one will make packing so much easier, and lessen the chances of forgetting things.
Lay it all out.
A week or so before you leave, take the time to lay everything out on the bed or the floor and evaluate what you have. What are you missing? What’s there? Are there things you need to grab from the laundry or the basement?
I don’t have a ton of clothes, so I usually end up packing things as they get clean and wearing old jeans and t-shirts during the last few weeks of break. That way, packing my clothes is easier and I’m not up the night before doing laundry like a maniac.
This is also a great time to evaluate if you need to run to the store to pick up anything, and then you can do it in one swift trip…rather than trying to do it while you do laundry the night before you leave. (I’ve been there, can you tell?)
Use smart packing tips.
Packing for college is a lot like packing for any other trip, just on a bigger scale. Use your usual packing tips and tricks, like rolling clothes and packing in reverse order of what you’ll need, to make packing—and unpacking—go more smoothly.
Use containers that are easy to carry.
Don’t overload them. I’ve found that duffels are my personal favorite—so easy to carry and they flatten down to store. If you use Rubbermaid totes, they’re easy to pack but make sure you have room in the closet or under the bed to store them! I also love those large reusable bags from stores like TJ Maxx or Ikea to collect odds and ends in. A roommate once packed books in a wingspan box—like you use for shoes—and it was almost impossible to carry due to the weight and awkward size.
As long as you don’t forget something essential—like toothpaste or underwear or a computer charger—you’ll be fine. You can live without almost everything, I promise. Also, it’s usually pretty easy to replace what you forgot, have it sent to you, or get something new. You’ll probably collect a lot of things during the semester, as well, so don’t worry too much about what you bring, and when it doubt, try to leave it behind.
Labels and lists are my favorite, can you tell? Anything to stay more organized!
Label things for you. Know which box goes where and what’s in it. I sometimes even put a list on the very top saying exactly what items I have. Also, knowing where your bedding is makes it easy to make the bed first thing, which is what I always do.
Label things for others, too: if you’re moving into an apartment-style dorm, write what room things go in on the label. That way, your kitchen supplies and your clothes are easily separated and easily unpacked. Also, if you’re moving in with the help of a few people (and keep in mind that a lot of universities have volunteers on hand to help you carry things), label each box with your room number to ensure nothing gets lost.
Don’t pack at the last second.
Seriously. You’re going to want to spend the last few hours you’re at home saying your goodbyes and relaxing, not stressing over what you haven’t packed yet. Get it all done the day before, especially if you’re leaving early, so that on move-in day all you have to do is throw your toothbrush and PJs in your suitcase and head out!