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Wanna know the best college student backpack essentials that you need? Want to know what to have in your backpack in college?
Keep scrolling to find out!
There are certain items you should always keep in your backpack in college. As a senior, there are several college student backpack essentials I keep with me at all times. College backpacks are not too different from what is in your backpack in high school. The only main difference is it lighter and should vary on what day is it.
Obviously, things to always keep in your backpack are snacks, pens, and a notebook in your college bag because you are going to be spending most of your day on campus. You don’t want to spend more money on overpriced food or buying a pack of pencils in the bookstore.
But there are other backpack essentials for college students!
Vital College Student Backpack Essentials:
Planners are a big must for every college student. Trust me. With a planner, you’ll be able to keep up with all the assignments you’ll receive over the semester. Most planners last a year or a year and a half. I like to splurge on planners because it’s worth it. I particularly love Ban.do’s planner due to the adorable design, functionality, and ease of use.
Having a notebook to keep up with your assignments will end up lost in the clutter of notes and assignments. A planner is meant to plan out your important dates and help you stay organized.
No matter what your major is nowadays, you will need a laptop. This is probably the most important college student backpack essentials. My mass communication major required us to have one due to the amount of work we do online. Even though there are some old-school professors who will require you to take notes by hand, you will still need a laptop for homework and assignments. Using your own personal laptop will save you time and the worry of finding one on campus.
My personal preference for any college student is to buy a MacBook Air. Unless you are an engineering student or are heavy on a laptop like me, I wouldn’t recommend a Macbook Air. I know some majors require students to use Windows/PC laptops. I personally needed a MacBook Pro because I use several editing software programs, such as Adobe Illustrator, while having tons of other applications open. Also, I planned on working in the social media marketing industry which requires me to be on my laptop a lot.
I think a MacBook Air fits a majority of college students due to its design being for the everyday, casual laptop user. Simply find out what laptop you need for college and figure out what fits your budget.
3. Rain Gear/Umbrella
Rain gear, such as ponchos, umbrellas, and rain boots are vital from my campus experience. The weather can be predictable. One minute it’s sunny and not a single cloud in the sky. Then suddenly you leave class and it’s raining cats and dogs! Meanwhile, you don’t have an umbrella to protect the printed essay for your next class and your expensive laptop.
Ever since my first laptop got water damaged, I’m always checking the weather and keep both an umbrella and poncho in my backpack. If I know ahead that the day will be a rainy one, I wear rain boots and a raincoat. I have two pairs of boots: booties and tall boots. I also keep an umbrella on me every day.
4. Hand Sanitizer & Antibacterial Wipes
Let’s face the truth: college campuses are full of germs, especially now with the pandemic. Even before this crisis happened, campuses were germy. From the classroom, library, student union, and everywhere else in between, it’s not the most sanitized.
Most freshmen get sick in their first semester of college due to the number of germs their body isn’t used to. I keep a bottle of hand sanitizer in a pouch from Bath & Body Works on my backpack handle and keys. I also use any hand sanitizer that’s around campus, such as random stations and on desks.
Antibacterial wipes are great for when you have to go to a place where germs are plentiful and you have to place your laptop or notebook there. Gently wiping the desk will prevent germs from getting on your stuff. Backpacks also carry germs since they are placed on floors, grass, and desks. Cleaning them will also help.
5. Water Bottle
Everyone knows about the wonderful Hydro Flasks. They are so popular because of how great they are. A Hydro flask bottle can keep a drink cold for 24 hours!
However, I encourage you to buy a water bottle of any kind. Water is the main component of our bodies. Walking around campus can make you exhausted and maybe even dehydrated. Drinking water keeps you healthy, awake, and energetic. Getting water from a water fountain saves you money. It is also easy to become dehydrated walking around all day without a drink. With a water bottle, you also do not have to worry about sharing water or touching public fountains.
Water in vending machines can get pricey every day. As a freshman, I used to spend almost $3 every other day on Smart Water. A water bottle should have been one of the main things I should have carried with me around campus.
6. Gum & Snacks
No matter what you are doing, you’ll need to eventually eat. Some days you’ll be hungry at lunchtime, and some days you’ll be hungry in the middle of class. Some days you’ll be crunched on time and won’t have time to walk across campus for a meal. Snacks are one of the best things to always keep in your backpack.
I recommend bringing a few snacks such as chips, dried fruit, granola, or cookies, and place them in your college backpack. These snacks are typically found in vending machines, but you can purchase a bulk on Amazon. This will save you so much money later on.
Personally, snacking in between classes is how I roll most days. I’m a busy-body. I have back-to-back classes, and my lunch break doesn’t come until 1:30 in the afternoon. Also, running around campus from class to class will burn calories quickly, so a snack will help.
Some professors won’t take essays if they’re not stapled. In my PR classes, my professors require essays or assignments to be stapled or they will not take them. Packing a stapler will save you from searching the building for a stapler, especially if no one in your class has one. Also, don’t forget the staples!
I personally love this panda one because it’s small and I can carry it in my pencil pouch. Don’t judge it by its small size! It gets the job done without any issues!
Obviously, you need a notebook to take notes in. I’m sorry, even in college, you’ll need a notebook despite having an expensive laptop. Some professors are just old-school. Depending on the class, you’ll only be able to use a notebook. Many classes I’ve taken have policies where you can’t take notes on a laptop or tablet. Getting a notebook is pretty much required in college.
Get yourself a Five Star Notebook. This notebook is called Five Star for nothing. The Five Star Notebook was one of my top backpack essentials for high school. It still is for me in college. The Five Star Notebook has some of the best quality paper that is easy to rip out without getting those gross ends. It also is durable and lasts forever!
9. Pens & Pencils
Just like the notebook, you can’t avoid not having a pen or pencil. Please do not be one of those people who show up with a phone, laptop, and AirPods and couldn’t manage to get a pen or pencil. Bring a few because you’ll need them for notes and that random pop quiz, your professor might give!
I just discovered these Pilot Erasable Pens! They are slowly becoming my favorite pens, but the eraser is a bit iffy. I love Pilot Gel pens in general, but now I adore them for having erasable pens that work great. Pilot Gel Pens are top-tier. They are so smooth on paper and last a long time.
1o. Tampons & Pads
Although there are probably some spots on campus where you find free pads, it’s rare that a bathroom would have some for free. Keep some in a pouch or small section of your backpack just in case!
Always carry headphones or earbuds with you at all times. Why?
Because when you want to go to study in a coffee shop during its peak hours, guess what? There will be tons of people and students rambling on about the most random things, distracting you. Find yourself a study playlist and tune out the world! (Or you know, catch up on those video lectures you put off.)
AirPods are great for everyone, especially students. They do not get tangled up like headphones or earbuds and connect so easily if you own an Apple product. I recommend them to any and everyone.
12. Laptop & Phone Chargers
Last one! Bring your chargers! I have a specific case for my chargers. You never know when your phone might need charging. There will be afternoons will you’ll decide to stay at the library and study. The last thing you’ll need is your laptop dying. I suggest buying an extra charger for both devices. One for your backpack and one that stays in your dorm or apartment.
This blog post was all about college student backpack essentials.
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