1. Return your library books
Remember to return all the books you won’t need over the holidays, and renew all the books that you may need to take with you; knowing that a book is sitting in your room incurring unnecessary late fees might put a dampen on your festivities.
2. Get some work done now!
If you’ve got deadlines or exams looming after the Christmas holidays, try get as much work done as you can before going home, or at least come up with a structured work/study plan for the holidays (and stick to it!)
Future self will thank you.
3. Pack light
You’re only going to be home for a few weeks and probably don’t need as many outfits as you think you do! Plus, you’ve probably got some clothes you could wear at home too. You may want to bring some stuff back with you, so remember to try leave some space for that when packing.
4. Do your Christmas shopping online!
Don’t be that person lugging a massive suitcase filled with presents through a packed train station, getting in everyone’s way; send your Christmas gifts home ahead of you to ensure you can pack as light as possible!
5. Clean out your cupboard and fridge, then take the bins out.
No one wants to return to university to find a stinky bin, month old curdled milk and mouldy bread waiting for them – least of all your flatmates!
6. Wash up all your dishes
Washing up those dishes will be much easier before you leave; imagine what those bits of food crusted on the bottom of the pan will be like in a few weeks…
7. Try leave your room tidy
You’ve got the nasty post-holiday blues, and those January exams are now threateningly close – to make it all worse, you’ve just opened your door and have to sort out all those clothes you left all over the floor and that nasty mug with mould in the bottom you left by your bed… Consider tidying your room a thoughtful gift from past self to your future self.
8. Pack in advance and make sure you’ve got the right tickets!
True story: I once hopped on a train after a very hectic week and handed the ticket inspector my ticket thinking everything was fine – until he looked at me like I was an idiot and told me that the ticket wasn’t valid until the next day! Despite giving an Oscar winning performance (I cried and everything….) I still had to buy a new ticket. Pack and book your tickets well in advance for the best savings and to avoid stress which can lead to stupid mistakes (like mine!) and wasted money.
9. Be safety conscious
If you no longer live in halls (which are usually monitored 24/7), safety can be an issue; these are some suggestions to make sure all your stuff is safe while you are away.
- Tell your landlord: depending on how much you trust your landlord, let them know the property will be vacant for a few weeks. This means they can check up on it once in a while –the activity could be a big deterrence to any potential intruders.
- Lock up: It’s a simple thing, but in the rush and excitement of going home, some people do forget to lock up! In the unfortunate event that you do get burgled, some insurers will only pay out if the intrusion was forced! That means it will be very difficult for you to get compensated if you left your door open.
- Hide valuable items: Move your valuables e.g. TV sets, games consoles… out of view; lock them up in a drawer if you can, or hide them in an unsuspecting place.
- Avoid publicising your absence: be careful with how much you post on social media about your absence – you can never be too sure who is seeing your posts!
10. Think about heating and electricity
- We are expecting some seriously cold weather over the coming weeks; as much as you may be tempted to turn off the heating completely, it may be worth considering setting the timer to activate low heating once or twice a day. Freezing can lead to burst pipes: although your landlord is most likely to be the one footing the hefty bill should this occur, coming back to find all your possessions water damaged is not ideal.
- Make sure all appliances are turned off at the wall to save electricity. There is no need to have your Wi-Fi on while you aren’t there!
- Turn off the lights. (but if you are really scared of being robbed, it may be worth leaving one or two on to ward away any potential intruders)
11. Love your family
After experiencing the freedom that university brings, it can be difficult re-adjusting to family life (e.g. actually having to let other people know where you are/what you are doing /who you are with/when you will be home…) Remember to be considerate and try your hardest to respect your family’s rules.
12. Enjoy yourself!
Make sure you take full advantage of the time you have at home! Even if you have lots of work to think about, find the time to catch up with old friends, enjoy all the free home-cooked meals, and relax in your comfy home bed as much as possible…
Got any other useful suggestions we may have missed? Please do let us know - tweet us @StudentHutUK.
Happy Holidays from the team here at Student Hut!