The page you are visiting was formerly part of the Which? University website, but is now being provided by The Uni Guide — part of The Student Room. For more information please click here.

Cookies help us deliver our services. By using our services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn more

Six things you DON’T need to pack for university

What don't you need to pack when you leave for university? Find out and save yourself some space!

You'll only regret taking this lot in your student luggage, so leave them behind...

What not to take to uni


Kettle and kitchenware

Keep calm and have a cuppa...

Whether to warm you up or get you through that essay, tea is a bona-fide lifesaver at university (as it is in life in general). So a kettle is an essential in any student kitchen… but not necessarily your suitcase. If your halls haven't provided one, then it's very likely that several of your new housemates will have one with them anyway, or you can chip in together for essential gadgets.

And unless you're a budding Jamie or Nigella in the kitchen, basic equipment (such as a tin opener, colander, potato masher and so on) for simple meals will probably do. Your housing office should have a full itinerary of all the communal products it will provide in your accommodation.  

Excessive stationery


Do you really need a ruler if you're studying English?

Files, folders, A4 notepads, plastic wallets, highlighters of every colour in the rainbow... these can take up a lot of space. While we recommend keeping organised from the very start of term (so you're more likely to stay organised throughout), you can pick these same stationery items up once you arrive, before classes start. For now, just take a small notepad and a few pens.


TV and DVDs or Blu-rays 

TV and DVDs/Blu-rays

Yes, an episode of your favourite TV show solves everything; but don't take every DVD or blu-ray boxset you own.

When you need to take a break from studying, or you’re having a cheap night in with your new housemates, a film with some popcorn can be the perfect remedy. Use an online streaming service such as Netflix, iTunes, BBC iPlayer or Amazon Prime instead of taking a TV and your entire DVD/Blu-ray collection with you.

You may find that you have very little time to sit around watching TV or playing video games, anyway – you should be out there meeting new people and exploring your new home.

Budgeting for uni? Here are five start-of-term expenses you weren't expecting


 University posters

Start afresh with your wall art.

Your new room isn’t going to feel like home the moment you open the door. But don't bring the posters you’ve had up on your wall since you were fifteen: they'll take up room in your luggage and be evidence that you weren’t that cool at school.

Wait, and buy your wall adornments when you arrive. Many universities have poster fairs on campus with deals if you buy multiple posters; so you can personalise and save some money simultaneously. 

Your entire wardrobe 

There IS such a thing as TOO many shoes.

Do you really need to take fifteen pairs of trainers, or that prom dress? Research the kind of weather you can expect day-to-day where you’ll be. Chances are the further north you are, the colder it will be. You can always take the clothes you'll need for your first term, and pick up anything extra you need the next time you're at home.



Your book shelf doesn't have to look like this.

While it's admirable to hit the ground running when it comes to your course, it's probably not essential that you buy every book you'll need for the whole year beforehand and bring them with you. Similarly, you might be tempted to bring a lot of unnecessary books which aren't on your course reading list. Resist that temptation to appear more intellectual and just buy what you'll need for the first week or two of your course.

You can stock up on the rest later, and often more cheaply, from your campus book shop. Don't worry, your bookshelf will fill up quickly before you know it.

10 essentials you should pack for uni

Search The Uni Guide

Find further advice or search for information on a course or university