5 Things You Shouldn’t Bring to College

You’re going to have a laundry list of stuff that you need to bring with you when you head off to college, from your laptop and school supplies, to XL twin bedding, to clothing that’s appropriate for the climate you’ll now be living in. But while there are certain things you need (winter boots, a sturdy backpack) and items you’ll definitely want (mini fridge, your guitar), there’s plenty of bulky stuff that you should opt to leave at home. Not only are there many items you won’t have room for, but most of it you’ll find that you also don’t need. So when you make a beeline for the vaunted halls of learning, here are just a few things you shouldn’t bother schlepping along.

  1. Furniture. Forget it! Dorms will provide you with a bed, a desk (and chair), and generally an armoire of some sort. Nothing else is going to fit in your room. They really pack you in like sardines. And frankly, you’re not going to need any other furniture. If you want to stretch out on the couch and watch a movie you can go down to the common room. Anything you actually manage to squeeze into your room (bean bag chairs are the ever-popular choice) is just going to be in the way and will probably spend the majority of the year shoved under your bed.

  2. Your entire wardrobe. Have you seen dorm rooms? They’re small and they have very little storage space. So just bring a few mix-and-match pieces, plus whatever you’ll need to combat environmental concerns, and leave the rest at home. If you find that you’re missing certain pieces you can always have your mom send them to you. And while you could certainly bring a vacuum sealer and bags, the sealer itself will take up some space, potentially negating any benefits it might have brought you.

  3. Large electronics. The 50-inch flatscreen is nice, but there are a few problems with bringing it. First, it is bulky and breakable. Second, you won’t have any place to put it – likely you won’t be allowed to damage the walls by installing heavy-duty mounts to hold it. And finally, even if you could overcome the other problems, you’ll have to sit on your roommate’s bed to watch it and you’ll be too close to the screen. Save yourself a lot of time and heartache by simply using your laptop to enjoy media. Your TV will be waiting for you at home.

  4. Pets. You’ll no doubt see plenty of people on campus with their pets, but keep in mind that these people probably don’t live in dorms. In fact, most dorms don’t allow pets (and even then only small, caged pets like fish, reptiles, and so on). Plus, it’s really not fair to consign an animal to living in such a small space. And likely you’re roommate won’t take kindly to a litter box or occasional doggy mess in cramped living quarters.

  5. Your car. It’s true that to most teens, a car represents freedom. But considering all the obligations that come along with your car; maintenance items (oil pan, tools, 4 post lifts, and so on), the cost of insurance, registration, parking, and gas; it could really weigh you down on campus. Plus, you probably won’t have much use for it since most colleges are easy enough to navigate by walking, biking, or skating, and they generally have mass transit services that come right to the premises. So non-op your car and save some cash.

This guest post was written by Leon Harris.

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