Feb 09, 2018

Written By Maudie Powell-Tuck, All About Law

University Checklist

Feb 09, 2018

Written By Maudie Powell-Tuck, All About Law

Unsure about what you need to take to uni? Here’s our ultimate university checklist: the provisions you might need to kick off your first term in style.

Starting university can be a nerve-wracking time. For many people, it’s the first time they’ve lived away from home and from their parents. It’s pretty hard to know what to bring. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to squeeze all your home luxuries into your uni room (which are nearly always of a diminutive size). Hopefully this uni list should give to some ideas of what you might want to take. It is only intended as a guide, so you should definitely check out any lists or guidelines your institution has provided too.

Your uni checklist…

Bed linen (2 sets of duvet covers, sheets, pillow cases, perhaps pillows and a duvet too)


Washing powder


Computer or laptop (don’t worry if you don’t have one, all universities have computer labs you can use too)

Bike, bike lock and lights (if you plan to save on transport and cycle)

Mugs and glasses

Plates, cutlery and cooking utensils

Pots and pans (if self-catering)

Alarm clock (if you don’t trust using your mobile)

Laundry basket

Extension cable

Any important documents you’ll need to register with the university

NHS Number


National Insurance Number (if you want to work whilst at university)

Passport photos


Basic food provisions for the first couple of days

Hairdryer/hair straighteners/any other essential electrical appliances

Thumbtacks if your room will have a noticeboard

Photos/anything to make your room feel more homely


Course textbooks

Any other study materials you’ll need

Desk lamp

Reading Glasses for late night reading!

Clothes for the term

Fancy dress for Freshers’ Week

Coat hangers

Bottle opener/corkscrew

A storage box or two for any loose stuff

What not to bring to university…

A micro pig

Your entire wardrobe

Super heavy appliances

Anything that contravenes your uni residence’s fire regulations

Too much stuff

Anything illegal…

Too much cooking equipment if your halls are catered

What AllAboutLaw staff regret bringing to university…

Brendan: A lunch box

“Everyone thought I was really weird for bringing one…”

Jack D: Too many books

“For some reason, I brought loads of books and novels that I had already read. I think I wanted to appear intellectual. I didn’t read a single one.”

Maudie: Absolutely nothing

 “I was so unprepared; I didn’t even have a glass or mug to drink out of. The clever students had made their parents buy them provisions beforehand, or at the very least raided their house. I had to use my already stretched student loan to fork out on things I could have brought from home.”

Jack C: Bad clothes

“Unfortunately, I was still in my Sum 41 stage. This was quite a few years ago…”

Oliver: A George Foreman Grill

“It was a good idea, other than the fact that all of my housemates brought one. We had FIVE George Foreman Grills in our kitchen. Coordinate with your housemates so you don’t end up with six toasters, four kettles and a ridiculous amount of pots and pans.”


What we regret not having on our university checklist…

Olivia: Nice pyjamas

“I had very embarrassing, childish pjs which I didn’t really think would be a problem. When you live in student halls, you’ll be surprised how many fire drills there’ll be at three or four in the morning. Emerging from your room in fluffy bunny pyjamas is not a good look.”

Jack D: Slippers

“Ok, it might be a bit OAP, but slippers can make a real difference – especially if you don’t have your own en-suite bathroom. Student halls can be grimy places, so slippers are ideal when you don’t want to go barefoot.”

Jack C: Your own bed linen

“I didn’t bring my own bed linen and had to use the horrible, old brown and green university bed sheets and covers. Breeze block walls, mauve furnishings and a brown and green bed made my first uni room a pretty depressing place to live in.”

Maudie: A mattress protector

“University mattresses are really uncomfortable: thin with springs poking into your back. A mattress protector is a little luxury worth having.”   

The final items

What you will need to take will depend on what is already there. Is your university residence self-catered or catered? Have they provided you with a list of the basic things you’ll have in your room? Will your bed be a single or a double?

Be practical too. If you’re getting a lift to university, you’ll need to think about how much you can realistically fit in the car. Are certain items worth the extra hassle of transporting them there? University rooms tend to be on the small side, so too much stuff will make your room feel cramped.

University residences will have fire and health and safety regulations that’ll restrict some of the items you can bring. You don’t want to invest in curtains, nice scented candles or rugs if they won’t be allowed in your room. 


Choosing a University