This one is for all those prospective first years, and for all those current uni students who have forgotten what they actually need to prepare for. And you should listen because this is coming from a girl who forgot all her cutlery when she moved into halls (every single fork, every single spoon) so I think I’ve learned my lesson re: being prepared for uni.
Here’s a nice little concise version of all those online Uni Checklists which tell you to bring loads of toilet paper and keep your door open to make friends but “don’t bring a kettle because everyone will, and then you’ll have 12 kettles!!” – not true, bring a kettle.
Register for the uni doctor
This ones more aimed at first years and it’s boring but it’s so important and everyone forgets (or pretends they’ve forgotten) to do it. Try and sign up some time within the first month, maybe not the first week because it can be hell with the whole of your year attempting to register alongside you.
But if you put it off you’ll end up screwing yourself over and you’ll run out of the pill or you’ll become bed bound with the flu and some angry nurse will tell you off over the phone and make you cry (I’ve been there trust me).
All the loungewear in the world
Please don’t try and look good for your housemates. The faster you reveal your true slobby self, the happier you’ll all be. There is a quiet harmony in a house full of messy, unkempt and lazy students – embrace that.
By the second day I was walking around in sweatpants with Sudocrem on my spots and boy it felt good. So stock up on pj bottoms, big band tees and sweatshirts because that is literally all I wore.
Make your room your own
This one sounds awfully cringey and like it was written by someone from Glee but it will stop you going insane. Band or film posters are good for quick bonding with new ppl, and photos of your family stop you feeling that crippling loneliness!
Simply put, you spend a lot of time in that bedroom and the less bare the walls, the less it feels like a prison cell. Also you want all your friends and housemates to think you’re cool and interesting, and you want to feel super cosy, so bring all your nice bedsheets and fairy lights.
Dear god PLEASE bring a bottle opener
Luckily in my block we had these weirdly useful door handles which doubled as bottle openers so we never struggled too much with the bottle opener dilemma BUT these magnificent doorhandles could not do everything…
There was this one time where we couldn’t find a corkscrew so we had to open a bottle of red wine by pushing the cork down into the wine bottle with a wooden spoon. It worked but the cork was in tatters amongst the wine and we had to filter bits of cork out of the wine when pouring… not so glam.
A good speaker and a good pre’s playlist
You’d think this one was pretty standard but in my flat we had maybe one good speaker amongst 6 of us and in Will’s flat (of 12 people) there were only 2 decent speakers. This is a dangerous game because god forbid the speaker owner leaves for a night or doesn’t wanna go out, you’re fucked.
What’s even more important than that though, is being ready at any point for that aux cord. You never know when it’s gonna be passed to you, and to hold the aux is a position of great power. One of the best pres of this year was when the person connected to the speaker played solid late 2000’s bangers all night. I’m talking N Dubz, I’m talking Heartbroken by T2, I’m talking Babycakes.
*Disclaimer* Let it be known that this was good for one night but if you play N Dubz every time you’re in charge of music then people will start to think you’re weird.
A mattress protector because no one wants bed bugs (or at least I hope they don’t)
Uni mattresses are actually grim. House or halls, this applies everywhere. Countless other students have slept on that mattress and it’s been worn down from years of use and hundreds of student bodies.
I was so extra that I actually brought a second duvet with me, folded it in half and stuck it underneath my bottom sheet. I know it sounds long but it actually made it the comfiest bed in the world and I deffo plan to do it again. Don’t play yourselves kids, avoid pointy springs and get yourself a decent mattress protector/duvet.
Be aware the there are loads of Halls Rules which you will break
Example: Not allowed people sleeping over without 72 hours prior notice given to reception staff.
Reality: As long as you don’t have halls where you NEED to sign someone in (rarely happens) then you can have people over whenever and for however long you want. No one cares.
Example: £70 fine if you throw something out the window
Reality: Threw an orange out the window at Tshering. I missed him but no fine.
Slippers or sliders
This makes me sound like the laziest person in the world but putting on shoes for the walk from my block to the laundry block was the most annoying thing in the world (if you know, you know).
Luckily I won’t have to do this next year because I have the absolute BLISS of having a washing machine in my house, but I’d never pass up some fur sliders if they were offered to me (yes, I’m that girl).
Putting a sock/clingfilm over the fire alarm only goes so far
Bear this in mind. Get air freshener. And close the curtains.
I hope this guide helps you in some way before you return/arrive at university. If it doesn’t, I don’t think I’m legally liable in any way so… too bad.
C u l8r