Two months ago your parents probably dropped you off, car stacked to the brim, with what felt like the entirety of Ikea, enough food to feed your entire flat and a bucket load of new stationary that will most probably never leave your desk drawer. You may have felt that you had everything you could have possibly needed – if not for the next three years then certainly for this year – and that may be true. However, as your University flat starts to feel a little bit more like home you may have noticed a few things that your fellow students brought that you wish you’d invested in – luxuries that turn into necessities. These may not be ‘essentials’ so to speak, but they’re certainly things that you find yourself thinking ‘what did I do before?’
So here are a few things we found came in very useful at University:
A luxury you may have skipped when you went to buy everything for University but the old George Forman will become a staple in your student life and once you have it, you’ll wonder how you ever managed without. As easy to cook with as it is to clean this will assist you in your day to day cooking needs from your bacon sandwiches in the morning to your drunken cheese toasties when you get in from that ‘just a couple of drinks’ night in the early hours.
It’s already starting to get really cold and for those of you who are paying for your heating for the first time you’re going to be caught up in a moral dilemma over the next few months of whether to turn the heating on. Whether you’re on the side of those who are determined to sit in Baltic temperatures and several layers of clothing or those who will happy sit in their shorts and t-shirts as they crank the thermostat up to the max, the likelihood is that at some point you will end up differing in opinion with your flatmates. An electric blanket is a great luxury that will keep your bed warm whilst not putting everybody else out of pocket. You may be using electricity rather than gas but it stops you unnecessarily heating the rest of the house and will definitely save you money.
No matter how many seats you have, there never seems to be enough and every time you have your friends over you always find that somebody (more often than not you) is left without a seat. An oversized bean bag is a great solution to this and will soon be the spot you aim for in the living room. Whilst the official FatBoy’s can be pretty pricey there are plenty of cheaper alternatives to be found to fit your budget. Giant bean bags are also a godsend when you’re hungover. Just try and pretend you didn’t need it next time you sink in to watch that new Netflix series on your laptop.
Yes, you’re right. This certainly isn’t an essential. However, by this point you’re probably already sick of your flatmates dipping into those luxuries you’ve allowed yourself every once in a while that you’ve ever so naively put in the fridge. A mini fridge that you can keep in your room will make you feel like a king and ensure that those treats are left for you.
Tired of playing music out of your laptop speakers? You may have brought speakers for your room but more often than not you will find yourself around the flat or at a friend’s wishing you didn’t have to listen to the latest essential mix through in such horrible tinny quality. The X-Mini (and other alternatives) speakers offer a powerful punch and are great for when you’re sat around with your friends. The best bit is that it’s small enough to fit in the palm of your hand and can just as easily be taken into the bathroom to sing along to your favourite tunes in the shower as it can be taken into your room for pre-drinking music.
Check out some more basic student essentials here.