A Levels: The next steps to University

In prep for University

What to bring to University: Your ultimate checklist


Getting ready for University can be stressful, especially when it comes to packing.  Let’s be honest – most of you probably haven’t spent more than a month away from home, so choosing what to take can be a difficult task. Most of you will probably try to pack away EVERYTHING you own in a rush of excitement, which is not at all realistic – student halls just aren’t designed to fit ALL your worldly possessions 🙂

Below is our ultimate checklist to help ensure that you’ve got everything you will REALLY need (….and a few extras).


  • Important Documents

These include: Passport, driver’s license, your university offer/acceptance letter, accommodation documents, any insurance documents, Student Finance letter. You will need to show all of this to enrol when you arrive at the University. Keep them in a folder and lock them away safely once you have moved into the halls.

  • Other Documents

NHS medical card for easy registration with our on-campus doctor, Vaccination history, Health Insurance for overseas students, National Insurance Number, a few paper copies of your CV – these will come in handy.

  • Passport photos

You never know when you might need a mugshot

  • Clothes & Shoes

Obviously, but pack light. If it hasn’t seen daylight in the last two years, the chances are, you won’t wear it in the next three. There are also loads of Northampton shops that offer student discounts, so you can boost your wardrobe if you need to!

  • Toiletries

Make up, shower gel, shampoo and conditioner, toothbrush and toothpaste, personal hygiene stuff (nail clippers, tweezers, razor, scissors etc. ) , a mini first aid kit, mild painkillers, your favourite cold and flu medicine (trust us – you will need it in the first semester) and most importantly, deodorant.

  • Towels and a bathmat

Unless you like to drip dry of course… we don’t judge.

  • Kitchenware

CutleryHalls’ kitchens are stocked with essential items like a microwave, toaster and kettle, but not utensils…  Believe it or not, forks will become like gold dust by the end of the first term, so make sure you are fully stocked up with kitchenware. Some plates, bowls, mugs, cutlery, a few pots and pans, sponges/washing up liquid and washing detergent are all pretty essential, although you can easily buy it when you get here, saving yourself the unnecessary weight in your luggage.  Pro-tip: buy items where it’ll be easy to see that they’re yours – something with a distinguishable pattern. It’ll mean your flatmates can’t get away with the excuse that they didn’t know it was yours if they use it! 🙂

  • Bedding

We supply the beds and mattresses, but not the bedding, so make sure you bring: sheets, duvet covers, duvets, mattress protectors, pillows and a blanket if you get chilly toes.

  • Clothes Hangers

Most halls have a few coat hooks, but if you prefer your clothes neatly hung in the wardrobe – you’ll need a good few of those. Plastic ones could be better than wooden – again, think of the weight…

  • Food & Drinks

Bring the basics with you for your first couple of days. Stuff that lasts a long time is best: pasta, rice, tea bags etc. Pro-tip: If you bring a pint of milk and some tea to share on your first day, your flatmates will love you for it!

  • Homely things & decorations

Pictures or mementos from home are so important, so save some space to pack a few. You can also decorate your rooms with battery-powered fairy lights or battery-powered candles too to give it that homely touch.

  • Laptops and electrical equipment

This goes without saying – mobile phone, laptop, tablet and chargers, headphones, socket converter if needed, USB stick and batteries. Plus hair dryers/styling tools if you use them. And remember — EVERYTHING electrical will have to be PAT tested!


Extra things that could come in handy:

  • Drinking straws
  • White tack (you can’t use nails or anything that can damage the walls in the student halls, unless you don’t want your deposit back…)
  • A few DVD’s for those lazy days
  • Twister or other board games — you’d be surprised at how often these get used!
  • Contraception
  • Fancy dress clothes — or maybe this should go in the ‘essentials’ list…
  • Lounge clothes — extremely handy for assignments & revision
  • Mini sewing kit


  • Your pet — tempting but not allowed.
  • Kitchenware that you don’t know how/will never use. These will just take up valuable space in your kitchen cupboards. Does anyone use a juicer daily, really?
  • Your WHOLE book / DVD collection — trust us, you won’t have time to watch/read it all – just bring your favourites.
  • Iron/Ironing board — if you’re in halls, you will have one to share with your flatmates.



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