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It may be hard to believe for many, but we’re now over half way through September and this weekend marks the start of the return to university. An estimated 2.38 million* UK students are set make their way back to university, or in many cases for the first time. This brings forth the problems of packing, directing your way there, and following the necessary guidelines after you arrive.
This can make things very stressful, but with our top tips we hope we’ll make the move-in as smooth as possible.
When we say pack sensibly, this means avoiding unnecessary items that take up a lot of space. Large speaker sets, never-ending shoe collections and the oversized teddy bear you won at the theme park can be very tempting to squeeze in the car – but remember, whatever you take there, you must take back. Most student rooms tend to be on the small side, so pack reasonably light and ask yourself whether you need each item you place in the car.
It’s important to make sure you have everything you need to get off to a flying start at university. A checklist is an excellent way of ensuring this, and should cover things like necessary documents, your moving-in time slot, your accommodation keys, clothing and any other things you’ll definitely need from the start – it won’t be fun getting there and being turned away as you didn’t book a time slot.
This may seems like an obvious tip, but especially with universities in busy cities, it can be a lot more confusing and stressful than you may initially think. Make sure you have the uni residence postcode and address to hand, use the satnav, and leave in good time in case of traffic – you’re better off getting there early rather than late.
The journey to university can be quite a challenge, so be prepared. The weather, busy motorways, and bad visibility from your car due to the bedding, Ikea bags and suitcases can all have an effect on your ability to drive safely. Before you leave, perform essential safety checks such as your oil level, water, fuel level and tyres – your vehicle will be heavier than normal so ensure your tyres are inflated to their recommended level.
Ensure you’re prepared for shops and everywhere else by taking face masks and hand sanitiser, keeping some for the journey as well. Moving into accommodation may be different this year as well depending on your university, as some are only allowing one person to accompany each student. In addition to this, there may also be a time limit allocated to each helper to complete the move-in and get back on the road - so be prepared for this scenario.
Especially if this the first time for the family, saying your goodbyes can be an emotional time and likely get the better of you when leaving your beloved student. If this is the case, take your time before hitting the road and wait until you feel in control – you’ll be a much safer driver if you’re not reaching for a tissue every few minutes!
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Universities UK - https://www.universitiesuk.ac.uk/facts-and-stats/Pages/higher-education-data.aspx