After all your hard work, it’s almost time to start college! But first, you need to get there and get comfortable. You may imagine throwing some clothes in a bag and skipping off into your beautiful new dorm room. But in reality, the logistics are much more complicated. Dorm rooms are blank slates that need a lot of stuff to make them feel like home. Moving out of your home and onto campus will require some preparation, organization and creativity.

Preparations

There are multiple things that you can do ahead of time to make moving easier. These tasks will increase your familiarity with your new home and hopefully reduce any stress you feel about moving. Take a tour of your dorm room early if possible. Take pictures of the room, closet, desk and kitchenette area. This will help you figure out what items to buy and pack.

Some stores will ship items directly to your dorm, which helps a lot on moving day. If you have a lot of belongings, then consider hiring local moving services. This way, you can spend quality time with your family instead of fighting over boxes and space in the car.

Moving Day

Leave early on moving day so that you can drive around the town and find the local grocery and hardware stores. You will likely end up running out to grab food or supplies at some point later in the day. Have some snacks and a case of water on hand. You may not have time to eat, and whatever you don’t use can stay in the dorm room.

It is helpful to have a list of things you’ll need at the dorm. Review the list as you pack and also unpack. Take note of anything you forgot or need to purchase. Let your family help you set up your new room. This is the last chance they will have to see you for a while. With their help, you will be done faster and be able to get out and meet your new neighbors.

Social Aspects

Once you are set up, it’s time to go through all the orientation events. It can be awkward at first, but it feels like that to everyone. Orientation is the best way to meet people and learn essential information about your campus. It may be optional, but it is definitely worth your time. Take a stroll around campus and look for like-minded people. If you are an athlete, check out the gym. If you are an artist, then go to the gallery. On the first day, everyone will want to talk. So, take advantage of the open atmosphere to make some connections.