When I was a Fresher moving into halls, I packed way too many things with me, especially pointless stuff that I either did not use or was not allowed to use in halls. I had a tonne of friends who were also in the same boat as me, so please, please, please do not make the same mistake as us. I am sharing my top tips on things NOT to pack when moving into halls!
- Every item of clothing you own and have ‘borrowed’ indefinitely with no intentions of returning back to its rightful owner
Do NOT pack those old t-shirts you never wear and keep meaning to throw away or donate to a charity shop. Chances are that you will forget you had even brought them to uni and would never use them anyway. You really do not need to bring your ex-boyfriend’s sports hoodie or sweatshirt with his initials or name, simply because whenever you wear it I can guarantee that one person will ask why the initials or name on it is different from yours… It’s a bit cringe and awkward to admit that you still wear your ex’s clothes despite the fact your relationship is long gone now.
- Your pets
You probably have a pet you have had since your childhood and almost regard as being your sibling. You may be tempted to sneak your pet into your room in halls, despite the fact you have explicitly been told by your accommodation that you are not allowed to bring it. Repress any thoughts of that kind. Your dog will bark too loud to keep it a secret and your cat’s fur will get everywhere, annoying both the cleaners and your neighbours. You really do not want your pet mice or tarantulas to run loose—you will probably give somebody a heart attack when they realise they are not alone in their shower or bedroom. Pest control will be called in sooner than you can blink an eye and it will not end well for your pet!
- All of your teddy bears and cuddly toys
There will be no room for your friends to sit down when they visit your room if there are 30 teddy bears and cuddly toys also on your single bed. Also, pre-drinks in your room is likely to result in one of your stuffed animals being lost, broken or even at the club with you in your drunk friend’s handbag. I would recommend limiting the number you bring down to those which have the greatest sentimental value to you.
- All things candles and fairy lights
Yes, I know it is a bit boring to have only an eggshell painted wall in your bedroom and you want to decorate in a way that expresses your personality. But it really would be tragic if your candles and fairy lights are the reason why the whole building is evacuated in their PJ’s at 3 am due to a fire scare or even worse, an actual fire!
- Every A Level/IB textbook and notes you have
Sell those old books if you can or leave them at home. All I know is that if you bring them to uni with you they will probably be on your bookshelves for the entire year. And be realistic, is the periodic table really going to help you in any way with writing an essay on the Cold War? Is Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer’s Night Dream’ useful in solving your mechanical engineering questions?
- Your Fiat 500, Mini Cooper, Polo or any other ‘typical’ student car
You are in central London: the transport links are amazing, so you won’t need a car. You will probably struggle to find anywhere to park your car and when you do, it will be an arm and a leg to leave it there. Also, you will be helping climate warming if you don’t drive.
As the first generation to attend university I was unaware of this wise advice and had to learn the hard way. But you are lucky I guess because regardless of whether you know many people who have experienced being a fresher you can learn from my mistakes rather than make those mistakes yourself!