Moving Your Student to College: Everything You Need to Know

moving your student to college

Moving your student into their college dorm or apartment is a big step. This can be an exciting as well as emotional time for parents and kids alike, and you might be feeling pretty overwhelmed with the process of planning this big move. Your student will probably not be able to think of all of the things that they will need when they are living away from home for the first time and you might be having to do all the planning by yourself.

College dorm life is pretty standard throughout the US, which can make the moving process a bit easier. There will always be variables to each living situation and there are ways to make sure that you think of almost all the possible necessities that your student will need when they are on their own for the first time.

If you are ready to learn more about the process of preparing to move your student to college, read on!

Preparing to Move Your Student to College

1. Clean Out and Donate

Have your student work with you to go through their things. You should then donate or give away stuff that they will not need once they have moved out. There is only so much stuff that can be moved with your student to college. Also, they should remove the clothes and other items they never use anymore from their closet at home before moving. This will make it much easier to pack efficiently. Also, this will keep you from struggling to decide what to keep or leave behind when it’s moving day.

move your student to college

2. Check Out your Dorm Map When Planning Your College Move

Most colleges provide a dorm room map that offers up information about the square footage, the style of the beds in the room, and the storage options. If your student will be sharing a dorm room, you will need to cut that number in half. In addition, you will need to consider how much storage your student will have in one half of the room.

Make sure that you measure all of the totes, bins, and other items that your student wants to use for storage before you send them out to actually move in. There is nothing worse than getting to your new dorm room and finding that nothing that you purchased for storage will fit into space.

3. Check on Utilities

If your student is moving into an apartment, make sure that you know what the situation is with utilities. In quad living arrangements, the utilities are often split and there needs to be a notice sent to the apartment manager before you arrive to make sure that you pay your portion. If the apartment is a studio, you’ll want to be sure that the utilities are turned on when you arrive.

4. Get Renter’s Insurance for Your New Student Housing

There are many different forms of renter’s policies. However, they are a good idea if your student is moving with a luggage that should be covered by insurance. You will want to shop around and talk to different insurance companies to find the best price and the most inclusive coverage for your student’s needs while they are away from home.

For items like expensive computers or an expensive bicycle, look into personal articles policies that allow you to ensure that one unique item for the value of replacing it. This can be a big help on a college campus where things tend to get stolen or go missing more often than in other settings.

moving your student for college

5. Figure Out Parking

If your student is moving in with their car, you will need to consider parking fees and parking passes. Most colleges require that a parking fee be paid. Also, make sure your student has a parking pass and permission to park near their dorm or apartment on campus. The cost for these privileges can vary. Therefore, you should be sure that you and your student discuss the cost of each option. Furthermore, pick the one that is the most affordable but also, consider the safety of your student at night.

6. Plan Auto Transport

If your student needs to have help moving their car across the country and you do not want them to drive by themselves all that way, you can have an auto transport company move the car for you. You will need to check into the reviews and the policies of the auto transport companies that you are considering. Make sure that they are able to deliver your car to a location that makes sense for you and your student, preferably right to the dorm location.

You will also want to be sure that you do not let yourself be swayed by a very low quote. A quality auto transport company will charge enough to cover their insurance costs as well as the mileage and the time for the driver. A very low quote might indicate a lack of insurance protection for the trip.

relocating your student for college

7. Check on New Student Move-in Dates

It can be tempting to want to move your student in well before the term starts to make sure they have time to settle into their new living arrangements, but this is not always possible. Many colleges have set move-in dates to make sure that the necessary dorm support people are there to help with the move-in process and to make sure that your student is not all alone in the dorms for a time.

There is nothing lonelier for a new college student than being all alone for a week before everyone else moves in. This can apply to an apartment move as well, particularly if your student will be living alone in a studio. Make sure that you plan to comply with the move-in dates that the college has set out. Thus, you won’t need a hotel to stay in for a few days to avoid student loneliness or boredom.

8. Packing Considerations

Your student might be feeling overwhelmed by packing for this new adventure in their life. There is a lot that they will want to bring. Also, they will need to know how to pack it all up to go with them. This is particularly true if they are flying to their new dorm home. They will need to be sure about the luggage they are bringing. This is so that they don’t end up with items they cannot store that are cluttering up their new home.

If your student is struggling with packing, make sure that you go back to the essentials. They will need clothes for all the seasons. Also, they might need a set of utensils and some limited kitchen supplies. They will need a set of towels and toiletries. Additionally, they might need their own mattress and storage solutions for their dorm. If they are moving into an apartment, you will need to help them to consider kitchen supplies and furniture that can be moved easily from time to time.

relocating your student for school

9. Cut Down on Fun Items

Your student might be tempted to bring their Xbox, a TV, sports items, or other fun things that they love to enjoy at home. An apartment will make this feasible in most cases, but dorms are not really the place for any large sporting items or things like electronics that need a TV to be used. Plus, you don’t want any valuable items to be stolen as dorm rooms are not very secure.

Have your student consider what they really can’t live without. They will be too busy with school things to spend much time gaming. Also, they will be able to have access to sports equipment at the campus gym if they need it. They will need to remember that they can buy small items once they have been moved in for a while if they find that they want to have a specific kind of item for their daily use.

Your student should not think that they can move an entire home bedroom into their dorm room and they need to be flexible and allow themselves to experience their new environment before they start adding items to their living space.

10. Load Your Car Safely

It can be tempting to let your student load the car themselves, but there are some considerations that should be made as you are packing that might require a little help along the way. It is tempting to just mash everything into the car wherever it will fit, but there are some ways to make unpacking easier for your student when they arrive at their new home.

You will want to be sure that you make accessible the essentials like toiletries and a few changes of clothes. You will want to be able to access these items readily if there is a setback for the move-in process that leads to delays. Pack heavy items at the bottom of any stacked items to make sure that nothing topples over during transit.

You will also want to be sure that you distribute heavy items evenly throughout the packing process. Having all the heavy items on one side of the car can be hard on your mileage as well as make it tough to unload. It can be a lot easier to pack your items into smaller boxes and bags to make it easy to get your student’s stuff moved into an upstairs apartment or dorm.

11. Ship Items to Your Student’s New Home to Make Moving Easier

If your student is moving across the country and is not going to drive, you can ship your items to their dorm. Many dorms will have an option for you to send your items to the front desk of the dorm location in advance of your student arrival. It is ideal for things like a mattress to be sent ahead of your student to their new home while they are in school.

Check out the shipping rates for these items before you agree to send them and make plans to do so. It can be more affordable and easier to just buy items once your student has arrived in some cases. Heavy items can be very expensive to ship, so you might want to have your student get the large items they need after they have arrived on campus.

relocating your student to a university

12. Check on Dorm Key Pick-Up

Many colleges make their move-in day policies clear and things like key pick-up are often included. Some living arrangements will require that your student pick up their keys from a property management company, however. This is true of quad living arrangements or live-out arrangements for sororities and fraternities.

It is always good to find out when and where your student will find their keys waiting for them. This is because it can be stressful to arrive and not know how or from who to get these keys. You also do not want your student to move into their dorm room and then find out that they have locked themselves out of their new room and don’t have their keys yet.

13. Request a Single Dorm Room

If your student wants to be sure that they will not have a roommate, there is often a way to make sure that you can apply for a single room in advance. You will want to be sure that your student has this situation resolved well before they start actually planning their move. Single rooms are not always available and you will need to make sure that this arrangement is set down in writing before you plan on it.

Single rooms are often much more expensive than a shared dorm room as well. Therefore, you will want to budget for this cost if this is your student’s plan. Many people are surprised about the cost of reserving a single room compared to a shared dorm room, so you will want to check on this information well before moving day.

14. Find out What Alterations Are Allowed

If your student is planning to paint or put up posters and pictures, they will need to check on campus policy first. Some items are not allowed to be displayed. Furthermore, many dorms will not allow you make major alterations to the dorm room while you are living in it.

If your student has been planning to move in with wall art and other plans to change the room, they will need to be totally sure that they are allowed to do so. It makes no sense to move any items with your student that they will not be allowed to use when they arrive.

moving your student to a university

15. Check on Policies for Holidays

If your student is worried about what to do with their stuff when they are home on holidays, they will need to check on the policies of the college about shared dorm rooms during holidays. Many students go home for the holidays. Nonetheless, there’re always considerations that should be made your roommate is not going home for breaks.

This is particularly true if your student has moved electronics and other valuables with them into their dorm and they are not sure that their roommate will make sure to lock the door when they leave the room during the break. Most dorms advise that your student bring home anything that they are concerned about with regards to safety when they are away on break.

16. Consider Working With Roommates to Arrange Moving Your Student

Many dorms and quad arrangements will allow you to reach out to your new roommates to plan out things like who will bring certain furniture, a fridge, or other large items. This can make it much easier to move the right items with your student to their new living location.

Being able to bring only needed things for your student can help you have an easier move-in process. Furthermore, it can eliminate the need for your student to store items that would be redundant in their new home. This can also make it possible for your student to start engaging with their new roommates before they live together.

17. Look Into Food, Shopping, and Transport

Make sure that you sit down with your student and look at local options for food, shopping, and transportation. If your student isn’t moving with a car, make sure you look into subway or bus passes for your student. In addition, be sure you ask if they will need a bicycle to move with them or not.

It is bewildering for students who have never lived alone to figure out shopping, buying groceries, and getting places. However, you can help them to feel more comfortable if you talk about this information before they are living alone. Most campuses have a lot of available support for new students related to this process. Nevertheless, planning in advance can help your student to feel more comfortable.

how to move your student for college

18. Make Sure To Attend Orientation

Orientation is often mandatory. Nevertheless, it is also a big help for new students to learn about where student health is. This is to help them to navigate campus. Also, it’s a good chance for them to ask questions they might have about living on campus.

Orientation is often held more than once throughout the move-in process. Also, you will want to be sure that your student is present for one of these orientation meetings. It is a big hindrance to the acclimation process for your student to miss this part of the move-in process.

19. Eating Arrangements

Some students think that they will be able to keep a lot of groceries in their dorm room. In most cases, dorm rooms offer very limited room for food storage. Additionally, some campuses have rules about what foods can be left in dorm rooms to prevent mice or rat infestations. Make sure that you know and communicate with your student about the food arrangements at their new dorm.

Most dorms offer included dining in the cafeteria for three meals of the day. Therefore, your student will likely have access to lots of dining options on campus as well. They may not be able to store food in their dorm rooms that they were planning to have with them.

20. Consider How Many People Want to Come Along on Your Student’s Move to College

Dorms are not spacious and it can be really hard to find room for your whole family to come along on the adventure to move your student into the dorms. You will probably find that the best practice is to bring along a few people. However, make sure you don’t bring any more than three. Dorms sometimes state their preferences for the number of people who can come along to help during move-in day.

If there are large items to move into your student’s dorm, you will find that most dorms have some RA staff present to help with these items. You will not need to bring along some strong family friends to move items into the dorms in most cases.

Moving Your Student to College is Exciting and Can be Stress-Free

moving your college student

If you have been worrying about moving your student to college, this list of tips will help you to have a stressless experience during the move. There is a lot to plan. Nonetheless, if you plan in advance, the move-in day will be much more fun for everyone involved. You want to be sure that your student feels comfortable and excited about their move rather than stressed or concerned.

Moving day doesn’t have to feel stressful if you use these tips and tricks to make it stress-free. Your student will get to focus on the fun parts of being at college. In addition, they will not have to worry about any of the details that were planned before moving day.



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We feel it’s important for you to know how we determined your quote. Quotes are based on what the market demands for cars to be moved at a given time. Each quote is compared with the current rates on the National Load Board before being sent to our customers and will be reviewed periodically through the process.

Other companies might offer you a lower price to obtain your business. This method is ineffective because if the car does not pay the correct amount of money, it will run the probability of not getting loaded or transported on time. You will not get this information from our competitors. Truck drivers always take the loads that pay the most first, leaving the loads that are mispriced to be moved last or not at all. We try very hard to avoid this with our customers by quoting a fair but realistic quote up front. Visit our How we determine your quote page for more information.

Understanding auto transport insurance is important and we think it’s valuable to explain how it works. As part of providing a great car transport service, it is our job to guarantee that the carrier we assign to pickup your vehicle is licensed and insured. Click here to check out our license.

When you go with Mercury to ship your vehicle, you can rest assured that the carrier assigned to move your car is fully insured and licensed with the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier and Saftey Administration).

Your vehicle is covered by the carrier’s insurance policy that is doing the shipping. Depending on the type and size of the truck/trailer that is shipping your car, the insurance policy can cover from $100,000 to $1,000,000 of damage.

We have also provided a checklist to explain what you need to do at both pickup and delivery in case there are any issues so, you can file a claim and know that everything will be taken care of.

It is rare but, time-to-time there may be accidental damage while in transit and it is good to know that your carrier’s insurance will protect your auto shipment in that event.

To view a sample BOL (Bill of Lading) and learn what to do in case of accidental damage, please check out our Condition Report and Procedure checklist.

When comparing auto transport companies, keep in mind that low-priced quotes often result in delays in getting your vehicle loaded. Choosing the right broker is vital to getting a reputable carrier for the lowest price possible.  

We feel it’s important for you to know how we determine your quote.

When you’re looking for a car shipping rate, you want to understand how auto transport works. Prices are based on seasonal market demands for cars to be moved at any given time. Each quote is prepared based on the season and the current national rates.

When comparing auto transport companies, keep in mind that low-priced quotes often result in delays in getting your vehicle loaded. Choosing the right broker is vital to getting a reputable carrier for the lowest price possible. Not all brokers are created equal in this talent.

Mercury does a thorough background check with each carrier for every shipment. We verify their ratings, references, and in addition, we obtain a certified copy of their insurance certificate, directly from the government agency that it is on file with.

You can have peace of mind knowing that the carrier shipping your vehicle is the very best and that there are no surprises guaranteed.

Mercury Auto Transport is licensed, Bonded and Insured. Our FMSCA Motor Carrier Number is MC647319.

While we do our best match your auto shipping needs with the most responsible carriers with the best track records, from time-to-time there may be accidental damage while in transit, it is good to know that the insurance of the carrier we locate for you will protect your auto shipment in that event.

Shipping a vehicle can be stressful if you don’t know what to do.  This is why we believe it is paramount to have our highly trained agents be your main point of contact from start to finish.

They will go over everything you need to know so you can relax.  In the meanwhile, we prepared this checklist.  This includes everything from pickup to delivery and how to make sure your car is ready for pickup.

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There are several ways you can ship a car.  The options include enclosed trailer, open carrier transport, flatbed truck, door-to-door shipping services, and to or from a terminal as well.  The most popular of the options is a 7 to 10 car open carrier.  These large trucks can accommodate almost any size vehicle including carsSUVstrucksjeeps, and vans.

Open car transport, door to door is also the best way to get the cheapest auto transport rate possible.  To learn more and see what transport method is best for you, please fill out our free quote form and one of our representatives will respond to you within minutes.  You can also call us at (800) 553-1828.

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