Back to Uni: Essential Tools That Will Come In Handy To Students


In this article we take a look at the must-have items you should take with you when you head off to university or college. Hopefully this list will help you spread your purchases out to make them more affordable and remind you of some things you might have forgotten.

Back to Uni: Essential Tools That Will Come In Handy To Students
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Going to study at the university is a big deal. It’s not something to get stressed over but presents enough of a challenge that most students easily fall into despair over it, especially in the initial phases. The secret is to take things one step at a time.

First, you need to figure out the most essential things to take with you. Later on, if you need help, there are plenty of online forums where you can get help.

Speaking of initial phases, lots of students often have trouble figuring out what to pack for school. And why does this happen?

Lara Kipling, Team Leader at EssayWritingLand, says, ‘’Most of the people in this group haven’t had much time to live on their own, so they don’t know what it’s like or what to bring and what to leave behind.’’ She adds, ‘’We’ve all been there at some point in our lives, and it will only do to have a comprehensive packing guide to get you on your feet.’’

Before we get down to it though, most universities don’t provide very large rooms – if you’re going to be sleeping on campus. And chances are pretty high you will have a roomie.

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The thing you want to avoid the most is being ‘that guy’ with all the clutter lying around. At the same time, there are various commodities that various universities (and rooms) already provide, so you don’t need to pack up your toaster just yet.

At the end of it all, the cardinal rule is to travel light. Carry as few things as you can be comfortable with. Keep in mind there are a bunch of things you’ll be obligated to share – like cutlery – so you’ll be better off splitting the costs with your roommates instead.

That being said, there are some things that you will need to go out and get. A lot of these can be purchased in stages before you leave home so you can spread the cost. Here’s some of the things we think you’ll need to take with you:

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Bathroom essentials

  • Toothpaste, hair gel, shampoo, conditioner – the basic stuff.
  • Towels – a hand towel and bath towel
  • A first-aid kit – should include the most important tools like a razor, plaster, bandages, and gauzes. A fully-stocked home first-aid kit should do the trick.
  • Condoms or other contraceptives.
  • Toilet brush
  • Toiletries/Medical Supplies
  • Medicines – if you have allergies or asthma, don’t forget your antihistamines and inhaler.
  • Flu medicine/paracetamol – Freshers’ flu is a bigger thing that you might think.
  • Antiseptics – antiseptic creams and wipes.
  • Cosmetics
  • Contraceptives – birth control pills, condoms
  • Sun cream
  • Nail cutters
  • Hair ties

Bedroom stuff

  • Bedsheets, a duvet, a pillow and a few pillowcases – the basic stuff.
  • Earplugs – some nights are going to be loud. If it’s a party you’d rather skip out on, or you’re not one for parties, you’re going to need them.
  • Laundry basket – your room may not have ‘the chair.’ Even if it does, you’re probably better off having a personal place to dump all your dirty laundry. Or you could make due with an empty box.
  • Cleaning products – it’s very unlikely you’ll have someone to do the cleaning for you. Some washing liquid and sponges for scrubbing the floor should do the trick.

Stuff for the kitchen

Some university rooms don’t have kitchens, and others still, won’t allow you to cook inside your rooms; others provide the utensils when you move in; others don’t. You’ll have to check up with the school administration regarding the rules.

Additionally, if you have roommates, you will have to share these items. For that matter, don’t just blindly buy everything on the list. Initially, a set of disposable cups and utensils should do. Afterward, agree with them how the costs are going to be split.

  • Pots and pans
  • Crockery and cutlery – plates, spoons, forks. About four sets of each should be enough to start with. A few mugs, cups and glasses will also come in handy.
  • A recipe book – at some point, you’re going to need to be able to cook some meals to relax. Similar essentials include a chopping board, knives, colander and wooden spoon.
  • Baking equipment – casserole dish, baking tray, rolling pin, etc.
  • Storage containers – freezer bags, Tupperware, and other (microwave safe!) containers for storing leftovers.


This part depends on how much a techie you are. Some people need just enough for some Netflix every night. Others need woofers to blow the whole room down. Choose carefully.

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  • Headphones and/or earphones
  • Speakers
  • Ethernet cables
  • Laptop and charger – this will really come in handy on slow days.
  • An assortment of dongles and/or adapters.
  • Hard drive
  • Hair dryer.
  • Power bank – you never know when the next power cut may happen.


You don’t necessarily need to buy a whole new wardrobe just for the sake of your university studies. Nobody ever remembers what you wore the previous day, unless you wear the same thing every day. However, it’ll do to have a good rotation of them every once in a while.

  • Casual clothes – these are the clothes you wear every day. Knock yourself out. At the same time, try and keep the ‘going out’ clothes and shoes from ‘school’ clothes. Then again, if you’re one to look fabulous no matter where you are, that’s OK, too.
  • A formal outfit – in case you need to attend a career attachment and want to be impressionable. Don’t forget the shoes to boot.
  • Sportswear – if you’re the sporty kind, a few pairs of sports clothes will get you through. An outfit for when you’re just there to watch and a kit for playing are a great start.
  • Storage bags – you’ll need these to store your clothes on your down days. They are incredibly useful for hiding a mess fast.


  • Stationery – this depends on the school you’re joining. Obviously, the engineering and architecture people will require a whole different set of equipment from the surgeons. You will likely be provided with a complete list of the things you need to sail smoothly through.
  • Important documents you’ll require include some passport photos, medical insurance card, medical history, vaccination history (in some schools) and driver’s license, on the legal side. Don’t forget to carry with you the bursary letters, scholarship confirmation, and acceptance letters. You may also need documents related to your bank account.
  • CV and references – if you’re planning on applying for a part-time job, you’ll have to prepare these documents at some point.

Staying entertained

  • Playing cards – it may be time to finally learn the rules of poker and pick up an unhealthy addiction. Seriously, though. Cards help to stave off boredom big time.
  • Board games – right there with the playing cards, board games like chess, DnD and Sine Tempore are the best way to kill time. You might even make some new friends while you’re at it.
  • Books – if you like reading novels, a Kindle, an assortment of novels or a brand-new subscription to GoodReads may just be the thing you need.

Miscellaneous items

Some items aren’t necessarily important but will be useful at the right time.

  • Torch – power cuts happen from time to time. If your university doesn’t have a backup generator, you may be stuck in the dark for a while.
  • A pocket knife/army knife – you’ll need to cut things open a lot more often than you expect.
  • Sports equipment – some swimming shorts/costume, running shoes, fitness watch, new tank tops and gym shorts. Maybe it’s finally time to pick up a healthy living lifestyle.
  • Umbrella – the rainy season should never get you unprepared.

While this list isn’t exhaustive, we hope it will give you a good start with your preparations for University and may have given you some ideas of things that you haven’t thought of.

About The Author
Paula Hicks is an experienced journalist from Romania. Currently, lives in the United States and works as a freelance editor for the number of educational resources. Her big dream is to open a publishing house in Europe
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