It’s a funny time when the acceptance letter from university comes through.  The kids are all excited and preparing to start a new chapter but it’s not so exciting for parents.  After years of GCSE’s and A levels and with the knowledge that they would “probably” go off to university, when the time comes the reality for mum and dad is a bit daunting.  Your baby is all grown up!

To get through this often difficult time it’s easier to concentrate on the practical side of things.

So, what will they need to take?  It’s tempting to pack up the car with all the home comforts but remember the campus visit?  Those rooms aren’t that big.  Whether on campus or off-site the chances are that they will be in shared accommodation so there will be things provided that are safety tested and complaint with health and safety requirements.  There’s no need for 4 toasters and kettles after all!

We have curated a special Student Gift Box with a selection of handy treats to celebrate the new chapter and we’ve also got some great gifts that are great for those who need to commute to lectures, we have notebooks and a handy and stylish USB Pen with 16GB of memory.

Here are a few things that you’ll need to pack.

Important Paperwork

Make sure that your little brainbox has a file of all their essential paperwork.  Starting off on the right foot will relieve any stress and tension in the first few days when they are settling in, leaving them free to mix and mingle and make new friends.  Some of the documents required include.

  • Valid passport and/or driving licence (ID)
  • University admission acceptance letter/Course acceptance letter
  • Accommodation Contracts
  • Student Finance or Bursary letters
  • Insurance documents
  • Passport photos
  • Vaccination history /Prescription copies
  • Bank debit card
  • Student discount cards

Electrical Products

Remember the essentials, the electrical items that they’ll need to get through lectures as well as a way of keeping in touch with their new pals and of course family.

  • Laptop and Printer
  • USB Memory Stick
  • Ink and paper
  • Cables
  • Headphones
  • Portable Speakers
  • Device chargers
  • Batteries

Household Items – Bed and Bath

This is where it all about their home comforts.  Favourite bedding, photos and nik-naks!  New PJ’s and Dressing Gown and of course toiletries.

  • Bedding
  • Mattress protector
  • Coat hangers
  • Laundry basket
  • Small mirror
  • Wall clock
  • Clothes horse
  • Desk fan
  • Earplugs
  • Photos of friends & family


  • Bath towel/Hand towel
  • PJ’s and Dressing gown
  • Toiletries – Soap, toothpaste etc.
  • Flip-flops
  • Toilet roll
  • Hairbrush
  • Hair straighteners/dryer
  • Make-up and remover
  • Nail cutters/Tweezers
  • Small first-aid kit
  • Razors and shaving cream
  • Sanitary Products
  • Contraceptives
  • Paracetamol/Medication
  • Personal supplies (e.g. contact lens solution)


  • Student recipe book
  • Small cutlery set
  • Plate/Bowl/Mug/Glass
  • Sharp knife (general purpose)
  • Scissors
  • Tupperware
  • Bottle opener
  • Chopping board
  • Ladle/Spatula
  • Pans
  • Measuring jug
  • Can opener/Peeler
  • Cheese grater/Whisk
  • Baking tray
  • Oven gloves/Tea towel
  • Washing up liquid/Washing up sponge or brush
  • Bin bags
  • Tin foil/Cling-film

The above lists are the practical items that will be needed on a day to day basis and things that you might not necessarily think of.  On top of this you’ll need to load the car with clothes and a starter pack of food.  There will be shops so the “Big Shop” and fresh food can be purchased closer to their new home.


  • Tea/Coffee/Sugar
  • Dried pasta and Rice
  • Biscuits and chocolate to share with new friends
  • Beer!

Remember that this is the start of a new chapter and is often the first step to independence.  Here is where real friendships are made, friendships that can last a lifetime. Embrace it, you could be looking at the next Bill Gates!

June 16, 2021 — Julie Selby