Ten essentials every incoming NTU student needs for moving into halls

With NTU’s next cohort having their places secured, incoming students are preparing to embark on an adventure like no other.

As thousands of soon-to-be Trent students prepare to move to our wonderful city, they may be wondering, “what exactly will I need?”

Nick Drewe, a discounts expert at WeThrift, has made things a little easier by compiling a shopping list of the essential items that freshers should take with them as they move into their new student halls of residence.

1. Kitchen utensils

Without stating the obvious, you cannot turn up to university empty-handed. The cupboards are not magically supplied with utensils similar to your furnished bedroom, so making sure you have the right kit ahead of your arrival is paramount.

Whether you are lucky enough to pinch some equipment from the parents or are willing to invest in your own appliances, you will need an assortment of kitchen must-haves.

Firstly, you must pack at least two plates, two bowls, two drinking glasses, and a cutlery set. You may be thinking, “why two?”, but when you cannot be bothered to wash up one day, you will be so grateful for having that clean alternative ready to go. You will also need a frying pan, a saucepan, a chopping board(s), baking trays, mixing bowls, sharp knives, and more.

For those lucky enough to know who they are going to be living with, it is definitely worth asking what others are bringing. Without sufficient planning, you could end up with a kitchen full of eight air fryers simply taking up space!

2. Storage boxes

The storage space across halls varies tremendously. A common conception is that you will have access to a dainty wardrobe and a few drawers if you are lucky. For those planning to pack in four seasons of outfits, you may want to think ahead.

Before splashing the cash on unnecessary storage boxes, take stock of what you are planning to bring and decide whether it is all necessary. Afterwards is when you can calculate precisely how much additional storage you may need. Lucky for students, storage boxes can often be purchased in sets and usually will fit under your bed or above/within the wardrobe.

3. Clothes hangers

Ah, the easiest item to forget. Many students assume that their furnished room will be equipped with clothes hangers. That may be the case for some, but for most incoming students, you will need to either bring some from home or pop out to the shops once you are all moved in.

Photo credit: Life at NTU – Accommodation

4. Bedding

 Luckily our student halls are equipped with a mattress, meaning you will not have to somehow squeeze one into your parents’ car pending arrival. However, what your halls will not provide is bedding. This can be quickly sorted by taking the bedding from your current home and transferring it to your halls. It is worth remembering that comfort is key for your time at university, so packing a few extra pillows and blankets will make your halls feel more cosy and homely.

For those who fancy a change and are looking to invest in some new bedding, be sure to find out the size of the bed you will have in your halls. Nothing is worse than forking £30 for a lush new double bedding set to find out that you have been allocated a single!

5. Non-perishable food

Many students would be surprised at just how much cupboard food they get through. Your first term at university is often chaotic, and meal plans may not always be followed.

Ahead of your arrival at university, it is worth scoping out the local supermarkets for bulk buy offers on products such as canned vegetables, fruit, snacks, cereals, and the like. Sticking to the student-cooking cliché, rice and pasta are great items to have in. They have an excellent shelf-life and can be highly nutritious when appropriately utilised. Likewise, they are a staple in many meals, so being the owner of this food gold will make you popular amongst your housemates.

6. Notice board

The majority of halls either have corkboards or whiteboards within each bedroom or a communal one found within the living space. Despite maybe not having one at your current home, you would be surprised how much they come in handy. They are a great way to keep up-to-date with key events and to-do lists, as well as provide you with a space to pin any photos of loved ones.

For communal noticeboards, it allows housemates to post their university timetables, event fliers, cleaning schedules and the like.


Photo by John Mark Arnold on Unsplash

7. House plants

The trend of bedroom jungles has been on the rise for a while now, especially for students. Plants are the perfect addition to any room. Whether they are artificial or natural (risky for those who are not well-versed with plant care), plants provide your living space with a splash of colour and, dare I say mature vibe.

8. Full-length mirror 

Going from living with your parents in a fully furnished home to a copy-and-pasted halls bedroom will provide you with many surprises. Something that often shocks many students is the lack of mirrors. Of course, you will have a small mirror situated somewhere in your room, and those with the luxury of an en-suite will have a bathroom mirror (subject to shower fog), but a full-length bedroom mirror is hard to come by.

9. Plastic or paper cups

This is something that can be organised upon your arrival but being the owner(s) of some plastic/paper cups is never a bad shout. If you are a sociable flat or are planning to host some friends for pre-drinks, you may not have, or be willing to risk, sharing your glassware. They are always great to have in, and you would be surprised at just how much they will get used.

10. Playing cards

This may seem like a bit of a cliché, but you will not get through your first year without using cards in some way or another. Whether that be in your own flat or with another, they are a cheap and valuable purchase and the perfect tool for breaking the ice.

Lead Image: Photo by Icons8 Team on Unsplash

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