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14 Things You Shouldn’t Pack for College


When it comes to packing for college, sometimes less is more. College dorm rooms aren’t known for their spaciousness, and when you arrive on your first day with all your worldly possessions in tow, you’re bound to feel some regret (and probably some annoyance from your roomie). You may be able to think up a dozen different situations in which it would be great to have your snow cone machine with you at college, but here are a few items that you’re really better off leaving at home.

1. Big stereo systems

We know you want your dorm room parties to rock, but unless you want your entire desk space taken up (and all your floormates’ ears to bleed!) your iPod speakers will get the job done just as well.

2. Cutesy knickknacks

You may think those snow globes and figurines scattered all over your shelves are a great way to express your whimsical nature, but all they’re really doing is collecting dust.

3. Your entire book collection


We know you love Harry Potter, but do you really think you need all seven books with you at college? With all the schoolwork, extracurriculars and hanging out you’re going to be doing, you’ll barely have any time to read for fun.

4. Excessive kitchen supplies

Not only are toaster ovens, mini grills, panini makers and other appliances usually prohibited from freshman dorm rooms, they’re almost always completely unnecessary (especially if you’re on a meal plan!).

5. Other prohibited items

For most schools, this means candles, halogen lamps, space heaters, incense and other items that are hazardous to your safety or the safety of those living in your dorm. Be sure to check with your school for items that aren’t allowed and keep those things off your packing list (and really, would you want to bring incense and have your dorm room smell like a fortune teller’s tent, anyway?).

6. Pets

How fun it will be to have a fish in my room, you think. How cute would it be to have a gerbil, you say. Spoiler alert: you’re going to regret it. Dorm room pets are not cute or fun, but rather smelly and inconvenient—and probably not even allowed by your school.

7. Clichéd college posters

That John Belushi Animal House poster may really resonate with your new “college student” persona, but purchasing one, as well as any poster with Jimi Hendrix, Bob Marley or drinking paraphernalia on it, is the equivalent of walking around in a T-shirt that says “Freshman."

8. Stuffed animals

Cuddles, Snuggles and Mr. Fuzzykins may have sat faithfully on your bed for the past 18 years, but we think it’s best that they don’t join you on this latest journey.

9. Your printer

You’ll think it’s great to have one in your room… until the first time you run out of ink and you never use it again. Plus, your school will likely offer plenty of on-campus printing options anyway.

10. A full-sized vacuum

Because it’s totally necessary to have one of these to clean your 8x10 area rug, said no one ever. Stick to a mini one and save your precious closet space.

11. Off-season clothes

You’ll most likely be going home for Thanksgiving, so you can probably wait to haul those three heavy parkas to school until then.

12. Excessive furniture

It might seem like a great idea to bring an extra dresser, a bookshelf and a Ping-Pong table to make your dorm room the coolest on the floor, but once you see the size of your room, you’ll realize you’ve simply made it the most cluttered one.

13. High school apparel

You may have been a proud member of your high school’s cross country team for the past four years, but there’s no need to bring four year’s worth of warm up jackets and sweatpants with you to school.

14. Duplicates of what your roommate is bringing

Unless you want to end up with two mini fridges, two full-length mirrors and zero space, be sure to discuss who’s bringing what with your roommate before move-in day.

What are you definitely leaving at home this semester? Let us know in the comments below!

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