Packing for College: Tips for Move-In Day

Moving into college is exciting, but there are a lot of moving parts that can make it overwhelming. My move-in process was pretty smooth, but there were still a many things I wish I’d done or known before arriving on campus. I compiled a list of my best tips for college move-in day:

This is the floor plan of my suite last year, this was super helpful when I was packing!

My first piece of advice is to look up the floor plan of your college or Old Campus building while you’re packing. These are pretty readily available online and it allows you to see the square footage and general layout of your room. While this won’t tell you everything about where you’ll be living, it will give you a general sense of how much space you will have and how your room will be arranged which is super helpful when trying to decide what to bring. I’m really glad my suitemates and I did this because it helped me feel a lot more prepared for move-in. 

This was actually the list I used while shopping, I ended up printing it out and hand-writing in lots more information while I was packing.

Another thing I did during my packing/move-in process  was make a master list of everything I was bringing. I listed each item, where it was packed (i.e. my suitcase, my backpack, a box), where I was going to put it once I got to my dorm room, and whether or not it had been packed. This level of detail is probably unnecessary, but having a list of every single item you’re bringing down to small things that may seem obvious like clothes hangers or phone chargers is really helpful. This ensured that I wasn’t forgetting anything.

My room all packed up right before move out, packing lightly definitley made this easier!

My next piece of advice may be unpopular, but I would actually recommend bringing less not more. When you’re packing, and especially when you’re packing for college, it can be really easy to overpack. Obviously, don’t neglect essentials, but if you’re trying to decide whether or not to bring something, I would suggest leaving it at home. In my opinion, it’s always better to have more space and to pack a little more lightly so that it’s easier to pack when you go home. Something that might ease your mind if you’re struggling to pack less is that there are lots of stores in the area that you can go to and it’s pretty easy to either get something shipped to you, or to grab something when you go home for breaks.

Finally, and most importantly, my best piece of advice is to relax (something that I was probably less good at during the move-in process). There are plenty of reasons why moving into college can be stressful, but there are tons of people at Yale (FroCos, pre-orientation leaders, college deans, etc.) that help you with move-in and that are there to guide you through your first couple of weeks so try to relax, have fun, and get excited about moving in!