The Gerber Life Parenting Blog

Dorm Packing List for Freshman Year of College

July 28, 2015

Young woman moving into dormAs your child prepares to leave home for his or her first year away at college, you may be enlisted to help pack since your child may be unsure of the specifics of what to take.

Before you begin packing, however, you may want your child to coordinate with his or her future roommate so that they avoid having duplicates of large items that could be shared, such as a television set, microwave oven, or small refrigerator.

Now you can get down to packing the essentials. To help you and your child avoid overlooking anything, you may find it helpful to refer to this dorm packing list, to which you can add or delete any items to match your needs.

Bed Linens

  • Pillows
  • Pillow cases
  • Sheets (2 sets)
  • Comforter or blankets
  • Mattress pad


  • Alarm clock
  • Bedside lamp
  • Small waste basket
  • Chargers (phone, laptop, camera)
  • Storage containers
  • Desk or floor fan
  • Bulletin board/dry erase board
  • Mini tool kit
  • Curtains and curtain rods
  • Closet and/or shoe organizers

Toiletries / Bath

  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Dental floss
  • Mouthwash
  • Deodorant
  • Soap
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Hair products
  • Razors
  • Shaving cream
  • Towels
  • Washcloths
  • Shower caddy
  • Shower shoes
  • Q-tips
  • Cotton balls
  • Aspirin
  • Bandages
  • Tissues


  • Laundry detergent
  • Laundry bag/hamper
  • Sew-on or iron-on name labels
  • Quarters for the washing machine and dryer
  • Clothes hangers
  • Stain removal pen or liquid
  • Fabric softener if desired
  • Dryer sheets if desired


  • Laptop
  • Laptop case/lock
  • Printer
  • Printer paper
  • Printer ink/toner
  • Power strip with surge protector
  • Music device and headphones
  • Stapler
  • Staples
  • Staple remover
  • Sticky notes
  • Index cards
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Calculator
  • Pencils and pens
  • Highlighters
  • Folders
  • Notebooks
  • Masking and cellophane tape


  • Plates, cups, bowls
  • Plastic silverware
  • Can opener
  • Containers for food storage
  • Dish towels
  • Dish soap
  • Sponges
  • Paper towels
  • Trash bags
  • Plastic bags
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Categories: College Planning
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