Packing for College

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Once you know what you're going to bring to school, your next step is to pack everything up. Some people would just as soon throw everything in their car, but, if you want to make sure nothing is damaged on the way (especially if you've got a long drive ahead), use these packing tips for common college items.

Books, DVDs, and Video Games

You should pack these things in small boxes because they'll be too heavy to lift in a larger box. Stack the books like you would on a shelf, spines facing the outside of the box. Try to use as much space in the box as you can. You can look at our Packing CDs and DVDs guide for more information on packing this stuff.

Clothes

No doubt you'll be taking some of these with you. If you are bringing under-bed storage containers (a good idea anyway), pack as much stuff in those as you can. You can even wrap delicate items in articles of clothing to keep them protected during the trip. Hanging clothes can be packed in a wardrobe carton (see our Packing Clothing guide), or in a garment bag. The previous link will also show you the proper way to pack clothing in a box, which is essentially layering it with packing paper.

TIP: You can also pack your clothes in any duffel bags or laundry baskets you are bringing. This will conserve space and make things easier to carry.

Electronics

TVs and computer monitors should have special attention paid to them. Wrap them in packing blankets and tape the blankets up well. If you are putting them in the car, face the screen toward the back seat for extra protection. Any video game consoles or stereo equipment should be put in their original packaging whenever possible.

Toiletries

Put anything that could leak in a plastic bag before you pack it. If you have a toiletry case, you can put everything in there, or you can wrap items in packing paper and put them in a small box.

Small Appliances

Keep these in their original packaging, and keep the packaging after you've unpacked them, too. You'll want that for when you move out. Anything made of glass should receive extra protection: for instance, the carafe in a coffee maker. If you lack the original packaging, wrap it really well with packing paper before putting it in its box.

These are just a few tips. Depending on what you bring with you, you may need to consult our packing guides for more information.

Patrick Hanan  Posted by Patrick Hanan on June 29, 2010

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