9 Tips for college freshmen moving out of state

1. Find out your move in date

Each school will have a move in date for college freshmen, and they will often have allotted time periods specifically coordinated for each student to move in. Often times, the school will let you sign up for certain days or time periods and then give you a parking pass so that you can pull up as close as possible to your dorm hall and move your belongings in. Once you have the day and time arranged, you can start planning your long distance move with details such as if you will be bringing your vehicle, flying, hiring a moving company, taking a road trip on the way there, etc.

2. Hire a moving company

While many people think that hiring a professional moving company is unaffordable, that is not true. People think that they will have to spend tens of thousands of dollars to move across the country to college, and so they opt out, trying to do the heavy lifting themselves. Hiring a local moving company in Tucson that will service a long distance move is a great way to ensure a stress free move. They will come in and pack everything up for you, and then transport it, and unload it for you in a safe, quick and efficient manner. If you know anyone locally that will also be attending the same college, it is worth asking about a group rate which will save you both time and money. The more people you can get on board, the bigger the discount you will receive. You may also want to look at some of your college message boards and see if anyone will be moving from you area to join in the group rate.

3. Only pack the essentials

You may want to bring everything you own with you to college, that is not practical for many reasons, the first being that you will have very limited space. This is a time to downsize in a big way. Go through all of your clothes and separate them by pieces you can donate, pieces that need to be tossed, and then pieces that are versatile enough to go with you to college. Remember, you won’t have access to a washer and dryer in your dorm room whenever you want, and you will not want to be lugging five bags of dirty laundry down to the laundromat every week. It is best to bring a few pieces to mix and match, and then hope that your roommate is about the same size so you can borrow each others clothes occasionally!

4. Contact your roommate

Before you move in, your college will send you information on your new dorm mate and a way to contact them. This is a great time to get to know who you will be living with for the upcoming year, at the very least. You will be able to coordinate who is bringing what of bigger pieces so that you don’t end up with two mini-fridges or microwaves. Some people even like to color coordinate their room decor such as bedding or lamps with their roommates, though not every pairing will agree on things like that, which is completely fine as well. The important thing is that you get a chance to get to know this person who will likely become your first friend at college in a new state.

5. Wait to purchase

As soon as people begin to pack, they get excited and want to buy everything before they take off for college, but you should definitely wait to buy some things. You’re already making a long distance move, and whether you are hiring a long distance moving company in Tucson, who will charge you by the total weight of items moved, or you are moving yourself, meaning that every last inch of vehicle space is valuable real estate to bring as many things as you can. So, wait on buying textbooks, school supplies, even a mini-fridge or plastic storage drawers for under your bed. This will also give you and your new roommate a reason to go off-campus and explore for a bit, and they may need some last minute items as well.

6. Places of Interest

Take some time to look up your new city and where certain places are located, such as department stores, hospitals, police and fire stations, and perhaps a few fun restaurants or parks with activities available to students. This will give you a good idea of where to go in any given situation. Perhaps you are moving to a college town that has an amazing Sushi restaurant, or deep dish pizza, wouldn’t that be a fun thing to try with your new friends?

7. Plan your driving route

One of the benefits of hiring a moving company is that it frees up your drive to your new college for an amazing road trip. You can plan on seeing national monuments or parks, picturesque small towns, or spend some time in big cities – it’s up to you! While most people have GPS on their phones, you should also have a paper map just in case something goes wrong. You should also be aware of the road and weather conditions you may encounter on your drive, meaning that if you will be driving during Tucson’s infamous monsoon season, you know the safety protocols to follow.

8. Get your vehicle serviced

If you plan on driving a vehicle during a long distance move, you must get your car serviced as soon as possible. Do not wait until the day before you leave to go for a quick oil change. You will want to make sure that a mechanic checks all of the fluids, valves, belts, hoses, tire tread, tire pressure, filters and battery before you venture out onto the open road. Heed your mechanics warnings because you car will need to be in tip top shape to not only make it to your new college, but then also to survive it’s time there. You will also likely be experiencing weather patterns that you may not be accustomed to, such as driving in snow, or through dust storms.

9. Car Emergency Kit

For any long distance trip in your vehicle, you will want to make sure that you have a Car Emergency Kit ready, should the unthinkable happen. There are several different things that you can pack in a kit, but a few items that are necessary would be flares, a spare tire and jack, jumper cables, a basic tool kit, a flashlight and extra batteries, some non-perishable food items, blankets, a car phone charger, a first aid kit, fire extinguisher, and a few bottles of water. If you do not have a membership with a roadside assistance company, such as AAA, this would be a good time to become a member.

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