Preparing for dorm life this fall? What are your must have items?

If you’re moving into a dorm for the first time or are a returning student, have/do you find that you should bring your own personal shower caddy?

Can’t you just ask your golf caddie to do double duty ?

I’ll give you the Thumper family story. We bought a shower caddy at BBB for kid one who never used it at all. Wisely left it behind after year one. So…we saved it for kid 2. That kid refused to even take it to college. Comment was “I can carry a body wash, a towel and I’ll be wearing my bathrobe”.

So…we donated it where I volunteer. No one bought it there either…not even for $1.

A must have for my two kids was a laundry hamper with wheels so it could be easily taken to the laundry room.

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D20 did bring one last year and it was helpful since she had a bit of a walk to the bathroom and a fair amount of stuff to carry. This year, she will be in a suite with a shared bathroom. There are shelving units in the bathroom for each student to have an area for their stuff. Only 5 people sharing the bathroom (vs 18 in the hall bath) so she will likely use her shelf and leave the caddy at home.

Would it make a difference if you could get a caddy where you could securely put your bottles in upside down and not have to remove when transporting caddy from/to dorm room/shower facilities? And, also have a secure attachment for small personal items that will not fall out like in traditional caddies?

I think it helped my d who lived in a traditional dorm keep her stuff together. Her bathroom was across the hall from her room. She may not have taken the whole caddie to the shower room, but used it in the room for storage for shampoo, conditioner, etc.

My 2nd D lived in a suite with 3 other girls, and they had a double bathroom. The parents had purchased a lot of shelving so they could keep their shower stuff in the shower room, and their other stuff near the sinks.

Must haves: fan, mattress pad, daughter had a lofted bed so needed a lamp for reading (think she had one on a clamp) and almost everything else was rarely/never used. Too much stuff!


Question - has anyone signed up for the student discount at BBB - they ask for student ID / other proof. This makes me think that there is something substantially better to this discount than using the standard coupons that are all over the place. Does anyone know?

Shower caddy was useful for my D when she had to use the bathroom down the hall. Nothing big, just the under $10 one you can get at Target or BB&B.

The BB&B college discount is nice because once you upload your acceptance letter it gives you 20% your entire purchase and you can use it as many times as you want from now through September.

We have a big list of things to bring but they are all pretty much the basics - bedding, towels, surge protectors, plastic storage drawers, command strips & hooks. Something we didn’t buy right away but my daughter ended dup loving was a shelf that clips on to the edge of the bed to use like a nightstand. She had no space to put her desk or a dresser next to the head of her bed so this was where she could keep a water bottle, her phone, a book, etc. The one we got was called Original Bed Shelfie and we got ours on Amazon.

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Lysol disinfectant and/or a room freshner.

If you have a roommate,consider a room divider for added privacy. Most room dividers are easy to set-up & to take down as needed.

A personal reading lamp that can be moved & attached to various surfaces.

Laundry bag.

My D22 just did a week in a dorm for a pre-college program and she reports that the shower caddy I sent her with was very helpful. It was a traditional hall style dorm with showers down the hall.

Consider appliances that run on batteries in order to be prepared in the case of a power outage. Thinking of a battery powered reading lamp, flashlight, and desk fan.