Many parents will be wondering which items to pack for college, as the new term is beginning. Waving your child off to their first year at college is both sad and happy, as it reminds you that they've now grown up. But even though they're now adults, they may forget to take useful and important things with them. So here are some of the items to pack for college …
1. Clothes for the Entire Season
One of the most important items to pack for college is a range of clothing. They probably won't be coming home until the end of term, so make sure they have enough clothes to see them through. The weather will change considerably over the course of the term, and your young student won't want to be shivering on their way to classes! They'll also need suitable footwear for the different temperatures.
Sheets and bedclothes are an often overlooked essentials that are not always provided by dorms. Pack two sets, as indoor drying space is often at a premium, and even if there is outside drying space it's impossible to dry bedclothes quickly if the weather is bad.
3. Bathrobe & Washbag
Many dorm rooms don't have en-suites, and shower facilities aren't likely to be next door. So putting in a bathrobe and wash bag will make life that bit easier for the new student. They won't have to juggle shampoo, shower gel and toothpaste while trying to keep their towel in place. Believe me, they will be grateful for you remembering that bathrobe!
4. Kitchen Equipment
Student kitchens may not be that well equipped, and the chances are high that communal equipment such as saucepans and plates will be in use by someone else (or thoroughly dirty). If you are driving your child to college, put together a cooking kit containing plates, bowls, cooking utensils and drinking glasses, so that they can cook themselves a decent meal.
5. Home Comforts
Going away to college is very exciting, but is a major life change that can be very daunting. So your student will also appreciate some reminders of home comforts. They might like some items from home like a warm, cosy blanket. Or you can buy them some new things to brighten up their room, such as a picture or cushions.
How many people remember to pack important papers when they go away to college? Make sure that your child has any paperwork and ID they need in order to enroll, such as medical insurance, social security and bank info. Remembering to pack these will avoid a panicky call home, followed by a frantic search and an expensive courier.
7. Food Parcel
Finally, shopping and cooking won't be the most important things on your college student's mind. Send them off with a parcel of healthy snacks to keep them going while they settle in to their new life, and maybe lots of basic food supplies as well. You could also give them vouchers for food stores to use when cash is tight.
Helping your child pack for college is not only practical; it can also help you feel that you're doing something to start them off on this new stage of their life. Besides, they're probably too excited to remember everything that they might need, so an extra pair of hands assisting with their packing will be, well, handy! What were the most useful things you took with you to college?