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Dorm Checklist – College Packing List

DormEssentials January 2, 2018
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When you’ve enrolled in a college or university, it’s time to prepare to check off a college dorm checklist of what you need to have in your dorm or other living quarters while at college. This Dorm Essentials blog covers our recommended college packing list. Remember to check ahead of time with your housing and roommate to ensure you don’t bring duplicates of larger items, or items that may be prohibited. Our Dorm Essentials college packing list includes:

Kitchen EssentialsSleeping EssentialsHousekeeping EssentialsLiving Essentials Living Essentials (Consumables)Essential Electronics Essential Accessories – School Essentials

To make it as easy as possible to cross off your dorm checklist, item titles have been hyperlinked to our favorite amazon affiliate links! If you aren’t a prime member already, make sure to take advantage of what Amazon has to offer – and get two day shipping for almost all the items below! And once you’ve gotten the essentials, make sure to check out our top tens for favorite college and dorm items!

 Dorm Kitchen Essentials

  1. Mini Fridge: Keep your drinks cold, or leftovers secure to be eaten the following day.
  2. Microwave: The microwave is the king of dorm cooking, alongside Trader Joes frozen meals and top ramen.
  3. Dishware (microwavable): Getting a set of plastic, microwave safe dishware will ensure you can eat quick meals between class.
  4. Utensils: A set of utensils to claim as your own will go alongside your dishware.
  5. Glasses: No matter if you’re drinking mixed drinks or water, having shatter proof glasses will come in handy.
  6. Water Pitcher with Filter: You can never have enough water- and using a pitcher with a filter is the best way to do so.
  7. Cup-Based Coffee Maker: You’ll inevitably have the early morning class or tests that require the extra wake-up.
  8. Can Opener: Alot of college food is found in cans, so have one ready.
  9. Paper Plates: When you’re sharing a pizza around the dorm or just eating a snack, paper plates are a quick way to stay tidy.
  10. Plasticware: There will be many guests headed your way; plasticware offers a quick way for them to snack.
  11. Food Storage Boxes: For the times you do have leftovers, food storage containers make for quick and easy storing.

Dorm Sleeping Essentials

  1. Cozy soft throw blanket: This is your best friend in the dorm, keeping you warm at night or offering a snuggle companion.
  2. Multiple bed sheet sets: Numerous liquids will inevitably be spilt on your bed; be prepared with multiple bed sheets.
  3. Mattress Cover (waterproof/bugproof): Most dorms will provide a mattress; ensure to get a water/bugproof cover to protect it.
  4. Mattress Topper: Most dorm mattresses are hard, adding a soft foam topper is a easy way to make it softer without replacing the mattress.
  5. Extra Pillows: Pillows are great all around a room or in the bed as seats, supports, and to take with you to another room.
  6. Extra Pillow Cases: The same way you bring multiple bed sheets, bring a few extra pillow cases.
  7. Body Pillow: The body pillow is a fan favorite of the drunk and tired, or to act as a barrier when sharing a bed with a friend.

Dorm Housekeeping Essentials

  1. Paper Towels: The best friend in cleaning any and all of your dorm messes.
  2. Ziploc Bags: There are many things you will want to bag up, so having these ahead of time is great.
  3. Trash Bags: Get bags the right size for your trash cans, smaller ones can also act as effective vomit catchers.
  4. Disinfecting Wipes: The fastest way to clean your dorm furniture and belongings is a quick wipe down.
  5. Disinfecting Spray: For those looking for a more intense clean, disinfecting spray will help remove the tougher stains.
  6. Handheld Vacuum: From dropped food crumbs to crash, a handheld vacuum will keep your dorm tidy.

Dorm Living Essentials

  1. Laundry Hamper: Between washes, you need somewhere lightweight and compact to keep the dirty clothes.
  2. Bathroom Holder: Keeping all your shower supplies portable is needed in a communal shower setting.
  3. Toothbrush case: When not brushing your teeth, a sanitary stow-away is needed, especially in a communal dorm setting.
  4. Nail Clippers: Keeping yourself trimmed and free of talons will keep future companions happy.
  5. Robe: The robe makes the walk from dorm to shower in style.
  6. Towels: Towels are great for drying yourself… and spills and the dorm.
  7. Flip Flops: Flip flops are the sanitary way to traverse the dorm showers.
  8. Ironing Board: For those planning more formal attire, a ironing board is recommended.
  9. Clothe Iron: As dorm policy permits, a clothe iron will ensure your formal attire is fresh.
  10. Hangers: You can never have enough hangers in your closet.
  11. Flashlight: Power outages occasionally occur, as well as the late night exploration.
  12. Safe: A dorm safe will ensure your valuables are locked away.
  13. Umbrella: Even if it doesn’t rain, an umbrella provides great sun protection.
  14. Bottle Opener: A dorm room staple.
  15. Lighter: Another dorm room staple.
  16. Desk Lamp: Key for late nights of reading, studying, or just gaming.
  17. Scissors: Because one pair will get borrowed and lost.
  18. Tape: From temporarily hanging things on your wall to marking things, tape is a common need.

Dorm Living Essentials (Consumables)

  1. Toothbrush: Buy multiple, it’s easier to get a new one than to try .
  2. Toothpaste: Whitening and sensitive recommended.
  3. Floss: Just do it, or at-least pretend to like when you tell the dentist.
  4. Earplugs: Trust us, there’s going to be times when you want to escape from the noise and sleep.
  5. Protection: It’s better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.
  6. Hair Product: Whether it’s gel or a volume spray, this will help you feel your best.
  7. Makeup: For day to day confidence or nightly glamour.
  8. Lint Roller: Whether you visited someone with pets, or you are headed to an interview – getting lint free is key.
  9. Detergent: Dorms generally have shared washing machines, bring plenty of detergent for the semester.
  10. Dryer sheets: With shared dryers, remember to keep extra sheets for others.
  11. First Aid Kit: Always have a standard first aid kit ready.
  12. Cold Medicine: You or dorm mates will inevitably get sick; having cold medicine is key to recovery.
  13. Stomach Medicine: Whether it’s from the burrito you ate late last night or just general nausea.
  14. Sun Screen: For music festivals, days outside, or sunny days in general, sun screen is good to have handy.
  15. Kleenex: For the good times and the bad, the sick times and the healthy, you will find yourself needing tissues.
  16. Tampons: Because biology doesn’t always play fair.
  17. Energy Drinks: Whether it’s to amp up before a night out, or to stay up for studying, energy is a staple.
  18. Stress Relievers: When midterms and finals comes around, you’ll be looking to re-find your zen.
  19. College Snacks: From sweet treats to salty and filling snacks to help give you energy.

College Essential Electronics

  1. Computer Monitor: You’ll enjoy the bigger display for both entertainment and productivity.
  2. Computer Keyboard: You’ll be a faster typer with a dedicated keyboard, in case you only have a laptop.
  3. Computer Mouse: A mouse is far more precise than a trackpad, in case you only have a laptop.
  4. Laptop (if you don’t have one, or need a new one): Portable, recommended over a desktop tower.
  5. Tablet: Recommended for classes where you want to keep digital notes or track along with a powerpoint.
  6. Xbox: Whether to play movies or games, this is a timeless classic to keep the dorm entertained.
  7. T.V.: For Netflix and chill.
  8. Speakers: For bumping party music, bringing a movie to life, or just good vibes.
  9. Extension Cords / Power Strip: For ensuring all your electronics are powered (subject to your dorm policy).
  10. Over Ear Headphones: From droning out the neighbors to keeping focused in the library, headphones are key to productivity.

Dorm Essential Accessories

  1. Whiteboard: Great for keeping track of self-notes, assignments, and other important dates.
  2. Hanging Frame: Great for hanging up the many memories you will make during college, from tickets to pictures.
  3. Desk Lamp: Key to studying or reading late into the night without waking your dorm mates.
  4. Trashbin: You will find that you can never have enough of these.
  5. LED Light Strips: Easy and quick way to have a cool dorm room.
  6. General Mood Lighting: Bring a unique atmosphere into your room with functional lighting.
  7. General Decorations: From decorative pictures to hanging tapestries, make your room unique.
  8. Lasers: Turn your dorm into a club quick and easy.
  9. Fan: It may get hot where you live, a cool breeze is always appreciated.
  10. Space Heater: It may get cold where you live, a space heater will keep you and others warm.
  11. Couch: Your dorm is bound to receive guests, so having a extra couch for them to sit (or sleep) on will bring joy to many.
  12. Area Rug: Dorm floors are commonly bare and cold, your feet will thanks you for a rug in your dorm.
  13. Space Savers: Space savers are key to fitting all your checklist items neatly into your small dorm room.
  14. Party Supplies: Because college is meant for the good memories.
  15. Board Games: For the nights in that should still have the laughter of nights out.
  16. Air Mattress: For the visiting friends or drunk party goers who will be crashing at your dorm.

College School Essentials

  1. Backpack: You’ll need this for all the goods you’ll carry around, from books to booz.
  2. Pens: For those still note taking or doing other forms of writing on a notebook.
  3. Mechanical Pencils: For all the scantron tests to come your way, without the resharpening hassle.
  4. Notebooks: For the teachers that don’t allow laptops, a notebook is a great way for quick notes.
  5. Graphing Paper: For those more inclined to use a standardized grid.
  6. Flashcards: Making these is a great way to socialize and study with friends.
  7. Graphing Calculator: The staple calculator for college STEM classes.
  8. Non-Graphing Calculator: Some classes do not allow or require graphing calculators.
  9. Portable Phone Charger: Never run out of juice in class or in the library.
  10. Flash Drive: For moving files and presentations to print or present.
  11. Hydroflask: Fill up around campus and stay on top of class – and the last nights hangover.

Once you’ve got all your dorm essentials checked off our list, the final step is to find out kind of roommate you’re going to be sharing your dorm room with! Only time will tell if our prediction was right! And if you’re curious, check out the all too-common story of what happens when you don’t check off all the items on the list.

2 Comments

  1. Ryan Dufol February 26, 2018

    Just bought abunch of these on Amazon. Thanks for the links and the reminders!

    Reply
  2. Jacob Johnson July 16, 2018

    Lol captions are hilarious, but I’m pretty nervous about moving into the dorms. Thanks for making this checklist, took a bit of stress off my shoulders.

    Reply

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