Preparing for University: Essential Checklist for Incoming Freshers

Embarking on the journey of university life is an exciting chapter filled with new experiences and opportunities. As you prepare to dive into this adventure, it’s crucial to ensure you have everything you need to start off on the right foot.

From academic essentials to student room must-haves, this comprehensive checklist will guide incoming freshers through the process of getting ready for university.

Covering everything from textbooks and stationery to bedding and kitchen supplies, this blog will help you feel organised and prepared for the transition to campus life. So, let’s dive in and make sure you’re fully equipped for the exciting journey ahead!

A group of university students in a classroom

Checklist While Preparing For University

Academic Essentials

The first thing to add to your checklist when you are preparing for university is everything that you will need to excel academically. That is what you are there for after all!

This includes textbooks, notebooks, pens and stationery. Do note that most universities now offer PDF versions of the books you need, so you will not have to bring in any books but just a device that you can use to read the PDF.

Most of the notetaking can be done on apps too, but taking notes on an actual book might help some people retain information better than others. 

If you are one of them, then be sure to grab some notebooks and pens to go!

Textbooks stacked

Student Accommodation Essentials

Most student accommodation in the UK comes fully furnished, meaning you won’t have to buy a lot of supplies. However, there are some things you will need to bring. 

If you are planning to live in a university-owned accommodation, you will most likely have to bring your duvet, bed sheets and pillows. If you are opting for private student accommodation, they will usually have these things so you can skip to the next part. 

Similarly, if you are not in a self-catered accommodation, then you will need pots and pans so that you can cook your favourite meals! You can also bring boxes to store your leftovers safely.

If you believe that you have a lot of things to store and the space provided might not be enough, then be sure to bring big storage boxes so you can keep your room neat.

Be sure to bring cute decor to make your student accommodation feel more homey! Read this blog on How To Decorate Your Student Accommodation Without Damaging The Property to get some inspiration. 

As mentioned in the blog, always be careful not to damage the property in any form!

Girl using a pan in a kitchen

Clothing and Personal Care

This is one step where everyone tends to go overboard with how much they pack! Be sure to bring clothes that you wear often and jackets and coats that are suited for different weather as well.

Since you might not have as much space to bring your entire wardrobe, we would also recommend you consider a capsule wardrobe while preparing for university. 

This can be a great way to find many ways to wear a set number of clothes so you can save space!

Also be sure to grab all your toiletries including face wash, body wash, toothbrush and so on! You won’t want to wake up the first day and realise you forgot your toothbrush at home and head to the store!

Suitcase with clothes


Do not forget to bring medication for pretty much everything. Although they are easily accessible, you would probably not want to take a trip to the nearest store when you are that ill!

So always pack all medicines that you will need like ones for cold, flu and so on.

Girl holding her head due to a headache

Financial Planning

This is arguably one of the most important steps that you have to take while preparing for university.

For most students, this might be the first time they are managing their own finances, so while it might seem exciting, it can also get overwhelming. 

Whether you are using student finance or someone else is funding your studies, be sure to create a clear budget for all your necessities and leisurely activities.

A lot of students finish off their student finance in the freshers week itself, and you wouldn’t want to deal with that just as you are starting university. 

If you are confused about where you can start, read this blog on 5 Budgeting Apps That Every Student Should Have and Cost Of Living: 10 Money Saving Tips for Students.

A man planning his finances in a book

Health and Wellness

If you are moving to a different city for university, then you will have to register with a GP in that area. This step is straightforward with some requiring you to go to the hospital to register and some offering online forms. 

You should also make an effort to stay active and healthy throughout university. Most students neglect their health due to being too caught up with university work.

While we understand how busy university can get, we would always encourage you to stay active in any way that you find fit. University is the perfect chance for it since there are so many sports and activities that you can try out and stick with the ones that interest you. You can also make use of the fitness centre at your university and find ways to have consistent movement in your daily life.

While staying active, you will also need to make sure that you are eating nutritious meals and not just cup noodles every day! You can try to meal plan ahead of the week with recipes that you enjoy so that you don’t skip meals or constantly eat out. This can save you so much money in the long run too!

Person walking on the treadmill

As you embark on this exciting journey into university life, remember that preparation is key to a smooth transition. From academic materials to personal items and everything in between, each aspect on this list plays a vital role in your overall university experience. 

Take the time to get organised, reach out for support when needed, and embrace this new chapter with confidence. With the right preparation, you’re ready to thrive as you step into university life as an incoming fresher.

Follow us on Instagram @universalstudentliving to stay updated on student news and events!

If you are looking for accommodation for when you start uni, you are in the right place. Visit our Universal Student Living website and browse through the range of properties across the UK.

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