9 Things Not To Bring To College Save Your Money

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Just because someone swears by it means you need it for college. Here’s what not to bring to college. Find out what college packing list items to avoid.

What Not To Bring To College

Firstly, one thing you must understand for a college freshman on a budget, every penny counts, which basically means splurging on unnecessary college packing list items is out of the question.

Therefore, just because it’s on your favorite college blogger’s “must-have” college packing list doesn’t mean you must also have it.

College is expensive enough, so there’s no need to buy unnecessary college packing list items, instead save your money.

So what are unnecessary college packing list items, you may be wondering?

Well my college friend, don’t worry I got you! Unnecessary college packing list items are “heavy marketed stuff” you want but can do without and still be a successful college student.

Thus, don’t let these college packing lists out here on the internet stress you out and more important influence you to make irrational money mistakes before you even begin your college journey.

So are these unnecessary college packing list items completely useless?

Now, this is not to say some of these college packing list items are completely useless. In fact, some of these items can very well make college life more comfortable.

However, if you are on a college budget, 99.9% of these items will consume:

  • Funds you really don’t have in the first place (especially if you are purchasing these items on a student credit card or using student loan funds)
  • Or funds that would be better left in your savings, money market, or investment account.

Therefore, ignore the urge to over-shop for college, because all in all, while some of these unnecessary items may seem like a need, realize 99.9% of most of these items provide little to no convenience.

Plus doesn’t change the fact that once you decided to go to college, making sacrifices is part of college life.

For instance, frequent homemade meals and a walk-in closet lifestyle you are used to are most likely placed on hold temporarily until you graduate with your college degree.

As a result, this college list is as real as it gets. Whether you stay on-campus or off-campus, use this list to avoid all the college shopping glitz and glam that certainly ain’t gold.

So, without further ado, let’s get to the point of this post.

What Not To Bring To College

  1. Expensive jewelry and other valuables
  2. Excessive clothing and shoes
  3. Excessive dinnerware
  4. Excessive cookware and cooking appliances
  5. Excessive stationery
  6. A printer and a scanner
  7. Excessive dorm room decorations
  8. Anything that’s already in your dorm room
  9. Clutter

What Not To Bring To College 1: Expensive jewelry and other valuables

If your intention is to be flashy at college, then sure. Bring all your expensive jewelry and other valuables to college. No one will rob you!

A Dose of College, say what?

Yes, the college security guards will personally help you protect your all expensive jewelry and other valuables.

Plus, if the college security fails to protect your valuables, the college will immediately write you a check to replace anything that was stolen or accidentally misplaced by you.

You see what we just did there …. sarcasm!

Don’t bring your expensive jewelry and other valuables if you really value them – leave these items at home.

The college staff will not help you protect your expensive jewelry and other valuables.

Plus, the college will certainly not write you a check if you get robbed or if you accidentally misplace them. You have been warned.

What Not To Bring To College 2: Excessive clothing and shoes

Bringing excessive clothing and shoes to college will only get in your way because, in college, the space in your dorm room is limited.

Therefore, unless, you decide to live off-campus, which most freshmen are not allowed to do during their freshman year, you can’t control the size of your living environment.

So if you still desire your walk-in closet lifestyle, your best option would be to live off-campus if you can. However, understand, that you don’t need excessive clothing and shoes for college to be comfortable at college.

Thus, pack the bare minimum for each season and keep it moving.

So that translates to a few pairs of jeans, a few t-shirts, a pair or two of comfortable walking shoes, a suit for college fairs, comfortable winter clothing, and a few college party outfits – nothing extravagant really, and you will fit right in.

What Not To Bring To College 3: Excessive dinnerware and flatware

If you live on campus, you don’t need excessive dinnerware and flatware, so bring the bare minimum to college.

However, if you are worried about how your meals will be prepared, check your college cafeteria.

The college cafeteria will inform you about the different meal plans available for consumption.

All in all, for most college freshmen, the college cafeteria and restaurants located on and near the college campus will be their main meal source.

Now, that is not to say preparing a cup of noodles or a bowl of cereal in the dorm room is out of the question. In fact, preparing quick meals using a microwave oven is very common in college.

However, you don’t need excess dinnerware and flatware to eat these quick meals.

So pack a small reusable microwave-safe dinnerware set along with a few reusable flatware and call it a day.

What Not To Bring To College 4: Excessive cookware and cooking appliances

Depending on the dorm design, cooking meals using anything other than a microwave oven might not be possible.

So in other words, leave your mother’s cooking pots at home because chances are you won’t be allowed to use them.

Girl on the internet says what?

Yes, trust me, don’t bother. Overall, you will be better served with a small microwave oven, a small blender, and maybe a sandwich maker.

Now you may be thinking, well, what about a cooking grill? Can I bring a cooking grill to college for my dorm room? Well, probably not.

Actually, I highly doubt it. From personal experience, my university didn’t allow any of it.

However, your university’s policy might be different. Therefore, before you purchase your cooking grills and portable stoves, check your dorm room policy.

In general, the most some colleges allow in dorm rooms are microwave ovens, blenders, and coffee makers. Some colleges don’t even allow a toaster!

Therefore, do your due diligence before wasting money on excessive cookware and cooking appliances.

What Not To Bring To College 5: Excessive stationery

Before you even think about it, let me be the first or second person to tell you, don’t bring excessive stationery to college.

Instead, bring the bare minimum and collect the rest at your school fairs. Yes, you heard right, collect your college stationery at school fairs.

While stationery is relatively affordable, the cost eventually adds up. Therefore, save money on stationery by collecting them at college fairs and similar school events for free.

Your savings and/or checking account will thank you.

Now, you may be wondering why would companies give away free stationery to college students?  Like, what’s the catch?

What’s in it for them?

Well, grasshopper, your worries are valid, because “free things” in this life a rarely free! In general, there is always a catch and in this case, you help the company increase its brand awareness.


Well, the companies that participate in college fairs give stationery away for free with their company’s logo.

So you get free stationery and the company gets free brand awareness, it’s a win-win for everyone!

Therefore, if you don’t mind a few pens, erasers, book bags, and pencils plus more with companies’ logos, this is a great way to get them for free.

What Not To Bring To College 6: A printer and a scanner

Bringing a printer and a scanner to college is highly debatable. However, if you can’t keep up with the maintenance of a printer and scanner, don’t bring it to college – save your money instead.

Plus, most colleges have copy rooms all around campus. So there’s really no need to pack a printer and a scanner for college.

What Not To Bring To College 8: Excessive dorm room decorations

We love to see beautifully decorated dorm rooms – they look so cozy!

However, if you’re on a tight college budget, avoid spending money on excessive dorm room decorations – you don’t need any to be a successful college student.

Now, even if you have money to spend, consider planning the dorm room decoration with your roommate and then splitting the cost.

Thereby, allowing both you and your roommate to create a special place you both will like at a lower price.

What Not To Bring To College 9: Anything that’s already in your dorm room

In general, dorm rooms are small. Therefore, if an item is already in your dorm room, don’t bring it to college.

For instance, adding furniture that’s already in your dorm room will just take up space, increase your college budget, and probably won’t provide any additional benefit worth the cost.

Also, consider how cumbersome it can become when and if you decide to move off-campus.

Therefore, avoid bringing anything that’s already in your room – keep your dorm room minimalistic and make moving out easier on yourself.

What Not To Bring To College 10: Clutter

Don’t bring clutter to college – it’s distracting, and it will only get in your way later on. Therefore, sort your belongings before you start packing for college.

After you’re done sorting out your belongings, only pack what you actually need for college and nothing more.


Overall, remember, college is expensive. Thus, every opportunity to save money during your college journey should fully be used effectively and efficiently.

Therefore, avoid bringing unnecessary college packing list items to college – save money on college shopping instead.

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