College moving 101: tips for your first move

Written by Corinne DeVries

Where do you even begin?! Preparing for your first move to college can be stressful and overwhelming, to say the least. The uncertainty surrounding what will soon be your college life is looming ahead. You’re not sure where everything on campus is, where your room is, what you should pack, if your new peers will be welcoming, or if you’ll get everything done before your move in date.

Thankfully we have quite a few college moving experts on hand to offer their advice on expertly preparing you for your move, so you’ll have one less thing to worry about!

Getting started and getting there

Most universities and colleges begin sending brochures, flyers, and check-up emails a montCollege movingh or two in advance to prepare you to move in. Often, among these materials will be a list of suggested items you need to bring. This is a good way to start your list of items you know you need to bring.  Another important thing to remember is most campuses get crazy busy during move-in days. A high influx of cars are on campus, makes parking and getting to your dorm or apartment just short of impossible. Be sure you check what time you are scheduled to move in and where you can park to unload your belongings, and try to stick with this schedule!  A lot of students will be moving in on the same day, and if you try to move in at a different time, there may not be a place to park and unload. Lastly, on move day, give yourself a little extra time to get there—there are many people in one area, and getting through campus or around town can take a lot longer than usual, and you want to make sure you are punctual for your move-in time.

Roommate bonding

It’s a good idea to get to know your roommate and become familiar with them so you don’t feel like you’re moving in with a total stranger. Meeting up to grab lunch is the best way to introduce yourself but if you don’t have time, or you roommate doesn’t live near you, you can always chat online or over the phone. This way you can find out what they like to do in their free time, as well as figure out who will be bringing what items. The typical list of items students share with their roommates are things like a futon, fridge, microwave, TV, carpet, etc.!

Sharing a bathroom

Check if your dorm is suite style or community bath. If you’re in a suite style dorm, you will want to stock up on cleaning supplies. Usually with four people plus your friends that come over, your bathroom gets gross pretty quickly. Get to know your suitemates and set up a weekly cleaning schedule for the bathroom. Since cleaning supplies can be a hassle to pack, you will most likely want to find the local convenience store once you move in, and get cleaning supplies for your bathroom.

If your dorm has community bath, you will probably want to invest in a carrier for your shampoo/conditioner, tooth brush, razors etc. to make trips to the bathroom simple. You can just grab your carrier rather than trying to carry everything in your arms. Sometimes toiletries can be awkward to pack. If you don’t want to deal with trying to find a place to squeeze your toiletries in with all of your clothes on move day, you may want to wait and buy these items at the convenience store once you arrive.

 Other essentials

Be sure to read through all of the information the university has sent you about measurements. All dorms are different, so before buying your futon, carpet, or fridge, check the size of your room to ensure what you’re buying will all fit in your room. Also, double check things like bed size. Some bunk beds or lofts in college dorms are longer or a different size than your average twin bed. If you’re planning to buy your own sheets, double check the bed size to make sure the sheets will fit.

Linen agreements

Some campuses offer linen agreements for on-campus living. So if you don’t want to go out and find sheets that fit, check to see if your campus offers a linen agreement. Often linen agreements include washing the sheets as well as shower towels. These items usually need to be returned at the end of the year during checkout, but it’s one less thing to pack!

In addition, check the laundry situation in your dorm. There may be washers and dryers in your dorm hall. Some campuses may include the use of the machines in your housing contract. However, some may require you to use cards or quarters. If this is the case, you may want to bring quarters or find a nearby location where you can exchange cash for quarters!

Survival kit

Some things you may not think about when moving into the dorm is that you will most likely get sick whether it be a cold, the flu, migraines, or maybe you will get a really bad paper cut! Or for those bad days where you seem to be spilling everything, whether it be on your carpet, desk, or even on yourself, there are a few things you will want to pack:

  • First aid: bandages, antibiotic and hydrocortisone ointments, pain killers, digital thermometer, decongestant, and antacids
  • Laundry: detergent, stain remover stick, and fabric softener
  • Cleaning: antibacterial wipes, glass cleaning wipes, microfiber dust cloth, roll of paper towels, broom, and dustpan


  • Pack light
    • The dorms aren’t very big and there isn’t a lot of room for clutter. Try to only pack the essentials with maybe a few decorative items such as pictures of family and high school friends to make it feel more like home.
    • It may be easy to pack clothes in a suitcase, however there isn’t a lot of storage space in a dorm room so try to pack clothes in garbage bags or something that can be easily thrown away or stored for when it’s time to move out again.
  • Pack like things together
    • If you pack similar belongings together, it makes unpacking on arrival so much easier.
  • Tool kit
    • Bring a tool kit for move in day and have it handy in case you want to loft/de-loft your bed, put together a table you brought, or something of the sort.
  • Explore
    • Introduce yourself to people living on your floor or in your hall. The friends you make in college will likely become lifelong friends.

Also find nearby convenience stores because we all know there is that one thing you forgot to pack and you won’t be able to wait for mom to send it to you in the mail.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. To learn more moving and packing tips subscribe to our blog or like us on Facebook.

Your moving (and sanity) guide for making the college transition

Written by Claire Schneider

With stores setting up their back-to-school displays, many 18-year-olds are getting ready to embark on the thrilling adventure of going off to college. While preparing a move to college might seem fun and exciting at the time, it also has its challenges. As a parent you want to be there help them in the moving process while making sure to not overstep. With these helpful tips, moving to college might be the easiest thing your college student does all year.

First, check the paperwork. By this time you’ve received numerous pamphlets and emails from the college containing information about the upcoming year. Remember to re-read everything the residence life dean sent, paying particular attention to check-in times, locations, and procedures for dorm move-in day. Some schools let arriving students and their families pull cars right up to the dorm door, while for others it’s first come, first served. See that you have all the necessary paperwork easily accessible.

College roommates Get to know the roommate. It’s important for roommates to meet before move-in day, so they don’t feel like they’re moving in with a stranger. This is a busy time of year, so if you can’t find a time that works to meet-up, connect with them on social media to learn their interests, hobbies, and interior decorating ideas. They should also take this time to decide what large items they can share and who will be responsible for bringing them.

Create a checklist. Together with your college student, make a list of the necessary items and stick to it. Make sure to include photos of friends and family and other sentimental items which will help make the dorm feel like an extension of home. Keep in mind everything will have to fit in your vehicle; otherwise, there might be too much stuff. This is the perfect time to go through the overstuffed closets and drawers to identify those favorite clothes and shoes which will make the journey to college.

Assemble a “living” kit. A “living” kit contains little items, which are not liquid or bulky, a teen may not think of as necessary but will need at some point. Items include:

• First aid: Bandages of assorted sizes, antibiotic and hydrocortisone ointments, pain killer, digital thermometer, contact solution, decongestant, and antacids
• Laundry: Detergent pods (they’re small, easy to store and easy to use), a stain remover stick, and fabric softener sheets
• Cleaning: Antibacterial wipes, glass cleaning wipes, microfiber dust cloth, roll of paper towels, broom, and dustpan.

Remember, storage space is minimal so anything in a convenient, flat-shaped packaging is ideal.

Locate the store oasis. No matter how prepared you may think you are, there will always be those items you’ll need to make a trip to the store for. Before moving day, find out where the nearest Target, Staples, and Lowes (or similar stores) are.

Know your time and arrive early! Colleges take a lot of time planning out all the inner workings of moving day to ensure things run smoothly. For a lot of colleges there will be limited parking space, so the earlier you arrive the better. Just remember there are so many others moving in that day as well and are just as stressed as you are. Be sure to stick to your designated time of arrival. If you come before your time, it could throw the housing staff completely off.

Only bring one or two suitcases. Even though they make it easy to move, especially if they are on wheels, you won’t need many while you’re away to college. Instead pack your belongings in large storage bags; these can easily be stored until you move out.

Moving tip: Keep clothing on hangers, place a trash bag over them, and tie the bottom. Then secure the hangers together so they don’t fall back into the bag. This will keep all of your clothes together and protected during the move. Then all you have to do is hang them up in the closet, rip the bags off, and you’re ready to go!

Bring tools. A tool kit with a basic hammer, screwdrivers, and pliers can be a handy thing on move-in day. You may need to bunk the beds, raise or lower mattresses, or deal with minor repairs.

Relax. Going to college is a fun and exciting time. Don’t get stressed with the move. Instead have fun and take this time to bond as a family. Make a fun and upbeat moving playlist prior to keep everyone in good spirits. Maybe include a few songs which have special memories for your family.

Of course you could always avoid the college moving day drama and hire a moving company. Here’s a fun video showing just how relaxing moving day could be for you.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward! For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.

Planned packing makes transition to college more organized

Between tuition costs, everyday school stresses, and decreasing job opportunities for graduates, college-bound students have enough to focus on without having to stress about moving their belongings from home to college.

According to, in 2011, nearly 68 percent of high school graduates enrolled immediately in a two-year or four-year college. It is safe to say a good amount of those students traveled away to college and needed the support of family or friends to help them move.

Luckily, we know a thing or two about moving and have provided easy-to-follow tips to simplify the move to college:

College moving• Use the right supplies – It’s worth the small investment. Don’t make the mistake of using grocery store boxes, garbage bags, or laundry baskets. Boxes that once stored food items often carry bugs, and garbage bags and laundry baskets are not dependable. Instead, buy moving boxes and use packing tape. Sturdy boxes can easily fold up, be stored for the entire school year, and are ready to use again for summer break.

• Pack like items together – Moving back to school can be a little overwhelming so the more organized the better. Label boxes clearly – there’s not a lot of room in campus housing, so organizing boxes can prioritize unpacking without the huge mess.

• Pack smart – Don’t make the mistake of overstuffing boxes. Too many items can cause the box to collapse and it may be impossible to lift. Just remember: the heavier the object, the smaller the box.

• Try to use original packaging for large electronics – A new computer, TV, mini-fridge, and microwave all come with packaging to keep them secure and protected. It’s much more likely that these items will arrive unharmed if they remain in manufacturers’ packaging.

College move“Transitioning to college should be an exciting time in a student’s life, but it can be overwhelming,” said Randy Shacka, president of TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®. “A successful and stress-free move starts with proper planning. Through simple preparation, students can make life easier as they head to school.”


TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® can help with your college move or packing needs. Start college off right and have TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® to do the heavy lifting for you!

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward! For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.