News Article

Comprehensive Packing Guide


Packing for university can seem daunting, but hopefully our guide will cover all the bases to take the hard work or thinking what to pack out of the equation. Take a look below and feel free to download our handy checklist for you to print off and tick as you go.

We don’t necessarily recommend you bring every single thing on this list, but take a read through and consider what would be useful for you. You don’t need to pack your entire room off to uni! Have a look at your tenancy agreement with your accommodation to see what they already provide and what you need to buy. You can always go back home during reading week or the holidays to bring more things back. 

If living in a privately rented flat, you may need to consider additional things like furniture and appliances. 

We have a whole other guide for international students on packing for university that you can check out here


1. Decorations 

  • Fairy lights 
  • Pins (most accommodations give you a pin board to put up all of your photos!) 
  • Photographs 
  • Cushions 
  • Random trinkets you like and make you feel like you’re at home 
  • Posters to hang on your walls 
  • Plants to liven up your room (you can always bring fake plants!) 
  • Command strips to put things up 
  • Rug 
  • Candles (if permitted)

2. Bed 

  • Bedsheet x2 
  • Duvet cover x2 
  • Pillowcases (2 sets) 
  • 2 pillows 
  • Duvet 
  • Ear plugs (a must when people are walking into your flat at 3am!) 
  • Mattress protector 
  • Sleep mask 
  • Mattress topper 

3. Desk/Dressing table 

  • Desk lamp 

4. Stationary and books 

  • Pens 
  • Blu tac 
  • Sellotape 
  • Fun books to read 
  • School books/textbooks (your course should give you a reading list) 
  • Notebooks 
  • Highlighters 
  • Pencils 
  • Ruler, Rubber, Sharpener 
  • Hole puncher 
  • A4 ring binders 
  • Stamps (the one thing university teaches you is how expensive stamps are) 
  • Pencil case 
  • Scissors 
  • Stapler and staples 
  • Folders 
  • Post it notes 
  • Paper clips 
  • You may need other forms of stationary depending on your course – best to check first 

5. Personal care 

  • Hairdryer 
  • Straighteners/curlers etc 
  • Small mirror 
  • Makeup 
  • Hair bobbles, clips, headbands etc. 
  • Jewelry 

6. Documents 

  • Passport 
  • Driver's license 
  • Debit and credit cards (make sure you set up a student bank account!) 
  • Glasses prescription (if you have one) 
  • University admission acceptance letter 
  • Accommodation contract 
  • Student Finance documents 
  • Scholarship or bursary letters 
  • Insurance documents (cheap student contents insurance
  • Vaccination history (speak to GP before you go) 
  • Prescription copies 
  • Student discount cards (e.g. 16–25 Railcard). 
  • International students may also need to bring: visa documentation, travel insurance, proof of funds, pound sterling cash, English translation book 
  • Debit and credit cards 
  • NHS number (make sure to get registered with the NHS if you are from outside the UK) 
  • Oyster card – you can pick these up from any tube station 
  • Accommodation contract 
  • National Insurance card (or just the number) 

7. Wardrobe 

  • Loungewear e.g jogging bottoms and baggy tops 
  • Pyjamas 
  • Daywear 
  • Going out clothes 
  • T-shirts 
  • Shirts 
  • Tops 
  • Dresses 
  • Skirts 
  • Jumpers 
  • Sweatshirts 
  • Jeans 
  • Smart trousers 
  • Tights 
  • Coats 
  • Suit 
  • Some form of fancy dress 
  • Underwear 
  • Socks 
  • Gloves 
  • Winter and summer hats 
  • Scarves 
  • Bag for university 
  • Bag for nights out 
  • Bag for day trips 
  • Suitcase (large and small) 
  • Weekend bag 
  • Slippers (make sure they are appropriate for the 3am fire alarms!) 
  • Coat hangers 
  • Laundry basket 
  • Iron 
  • Small ironing board 
  • Dressing gown 
  • Trainers 
  • Boots 
  • Comfortable shoes 
  • Going out shoes 
  • Tie 
  • Swimming kit

8. Electrics 

  • Laptop 
  • Phone 
  • Chargers 
  • Speaker 
  • Laptop (most of the time people make notes on these rather than paper!) 
  • Phone and laptop charger 
  • Power extension cable 
  • Speakers 
  • UK electrical adapter (if you’re coming from abroad) 
  • Headphones/Earphones 
  • Ethernet cable (if your room has an ethernet port and you like gaming!) 
  • Games console (multiplayers = great bonding) 
  • Batteries 
  • Socket converter, if you're an international student 

9. More general 

  • Hobby stuff – painting, gaming consoles, embroider; whatever you enjoy spending down time doing!) 
  • Sewing kit – in case you need to do any quick repairs 
  • Umbrella 
  • Padlock (always useful to have!) 
  • Matches (if you are allowed to have candles!) 
  • Any musical instruments 
  • Religious text 
  • Pack of cards 
  • Boardgames 
  • Drinks (you will likely want to keep these in your room) 
  • Snacks for your room 
  • Keys for home 
  • Hot water bottle 
  • Door wedge (handy for welcome week as it shows your new flat mates you are up for a chat!) 
  • Rubbish bin (provided by most accommodations, check in advance to avoid doubling up) 
  • Clothes airer for the odd thing you can’t tumble dry 
  • Fan (you may be surprised how much London weather fluctuates!) 
  • Over the door hanger for your bags, coats and dressing gown 
  • Laundry detergent 
  • Clothes rail (if you have room) 
  • Blow up bed for guests 


Student room in London


Depending on your budget you may or may not have your own bathroom. If you do happen to land yourself a private bathroom, there are a few extras you need to remember. If you’re sharing, fear not! You and your housemates will be best friends in no time so a communal bathroom will be no bother at all. Either way, here are the top items not to forget: 

A. Healthcare 

  1. Pills 

  • Prescriptions 
  • Painkillers (ibuprofen, paracetamol, asprin) 
  • Cold and flu mediation (you will need this for freshers flu!) 
  • Lozenges 
  • Hay fever medication 
  • Other medication you usually use 
  • Vitamins and nutrients 
  1. Creams 

  • Bite and sting cream 
  • Antiseptic cream 
  1. Liquids 

  • Throat spray 
  • Nose spray 
  • Antiseptic spray 
  1. Other 

  • Plasters 
  • Bandages 
  • Tweezers 
  • Nail scissors 
  • Nail file 
  • Contraceptives 
  • Sanitary items 

B. Toiletries 

  • Toothbrush 
  • Toothpaste 
  • Skincare 
  • Bodycare 
  • Wash bag 
  • Razor 
  • Shaving foam 
  • Deodorant 

C. Shower 

  1. Storage 

  1. Products 

  • Shower gel 
  • Shampoo 
  • Conditioner 

D. Other 

  • Bath towels and hand towels (x2) 
  • Hairbrush/ comb 
  • Toilet roll 
  • Flip-flops (communal showers) 
  • Toilet roll 
  • Bathmat 
  • Personal supplies (e.g. contact lens solution). 


If you're in shared living, you might end up with one toastie maker per person... in fact, there will be multiple of lots of kitchen items. 

You'll 100% want to take things like your own plates and cutlery. But most people are happy to share cooking equipment, and appliances like kettles and toasters are normally supplied. 

Have this in mind if you're sharing a kitchen because below is an exhaustive list of things to take to university. 

  1. Crockery 

  • Large plates 
  • Side plates 
  • Large bowls 
  • Small bowls 
  1. Cutlery (make sure you buy a ditstinguishable colour or type of cutlery so you know what is yours!) 

  • Knives 
  • Forks 
  • Spoons 
  • Teaspoons 
  1. Cooking utensils 

  • Sharp knives (incl bread knife) 
  • Scissors 
  • Tongs 
  • Ladel 
  • Spatula 
  • Whisk 
  1. Pans and trays 

  • Small saucepan with lid 
  • Large saucepan with lid 
  • Frying pan 
  • Baking tray 
  • Oven dish 
  1. Drinking 

  • Mugs 
  • Drinking glasses 
  • Shot glasses 
  1. Other 

  • Tupperware (food storage tricks
  • Bottle opener 
  • Chopping board 
  • Colander 
  • Measuring jug 
  • Can opener 
  • Peeler 
  • Cheese grater 
  • Tea towels 
  • Washing up liquid 
  • Washing up sponge or brush 
  • Bin bags 
  • Tin foil 
  • Cling-film 
  • Kettle and toaster (check if they are already supplied) 
  • Kitchen spray 
  • Kitchen roll 
  • Freezer clips 
  • Freezer bags 
  • Hand blender (great for making soup and taking up less space!) 
  • Mixing bowl 
  • Sieve 
  • Toastie maker 
  • Kitchen scale 
  • Water bottles 
  • Thermometer 

Tip: get all of your food whilst you are here rather than lugging it all down! Also don’t forget how cheap supermarkets and IKEA can be. There are two in London, one in Wembley and one in North Greenwich, so if you forget anything don’t panic. 


Gadgets for Millennials



Cookies allow us to provide the best experience using our kclsu website.

Read about how kclsu handles data , and more steps you can take to protect your data.

Select the optional cookies, and scroll down to give consent.