Check out these college backpack essentials that you need to have!
Want to know what to carry in your backpack on campus? Here are the college backpack essentials every student needs to bring with them.
15 College Backpack Essentials To Have in Your Backpack
Staying organized in college is one of the most important things to help you succeed. Having a planner like this one from Ban.do (aka my favorite brand for planners) will guide you on how to stay on top of your assignments and important deadlines. Planners are one of the first things to have in your college backpack.
Related: The Best Planner For College Students & How To Organize It
Having a laptop is crucial in college. You won’t be able to get far without one. Most classes will allow you to take notes from them and will likely require you to use them for class assignments. You should ALWAYS bring a laptop with you. I’d personally recommend getting either a MacBook Air or MacBook Pro. I had the Air during my first two years, then upgraded to the Pro due to my class workload.
3. Rain Gear/Umbrella
I always carried an umbrella with me during college. I learned the hard way when my Macbook Air got wet during a downpour. ALWAYS carry either an umbrella or poncho in your backpack. Rainy days are inevitable. The last thing you want is for your work or laptop to be ruined by getting wet.
4. Hand Sanitizer & Antibacterial Wipes
College buildings and dorms and apartments are full of germs. It’s so important to carry hand sanitizer around campus. Most students had those portable hand sanitizers on their backpacks. It also was common to meet people who had wipes even more during the pandemic. Surfaces were just gross in college because you don’t know who’s sitting there and it was easy to get sick.
5. Water Bottle
Water bottles are one of the top college backpack essentials that you won’t want to forget to bring with you. Having a water bottle will help you avoid paying around $5 for a bottle of water on campus, but also will help you stay hydrated. Usually, college campuses have water foundations where you can get water from for free, don’t get your water bottle.
Related:11 Examples of The Best Water Bottle for College Students
Okay, this is one college backpack essential that is super specific but will come in handy. I was a public relations major, so some of my professors would take points away if we didn’t staple your paper. Trust me it was so hard to find a stapler the day of—or in my case the moment I walked into class. (Look, it was a difficult class already so I was more focused on the content of my writing and campaign strategy.)
I recommend getting a mini-stapler like this one from Amazon that I have. It’s a cute panda, but still, it is useful for when you have essays to print out and turn in.
The next college backpack essentials you’ll need are snacks. Food on campus is overpriced. Bringing your own snacks will save you money and fulfill your hunger needs.
Related: A First Apartment Grocery List To Help Stock Your Kitchen
You’ll need a notebook for sure in your backpack. It might not be every day that you’ll take notes, but it’s the main school supply you’ll need for your classes. Some professors also will ban laptops, so you’ll be stuck writing notes by hand. I used Five Star brand notebooks all throughout college and loved them.
9. Pen & Pencils
Similar to notebooks, you’ll definitely need pens and pencils. I used G-2 Pilot pens all throughout college and still to this day. I love those pens. Then always have a #2 pencil with you because most exam scantrons will only accept those.
Related: The ONLY College School Supply List You Need For Fall 2023
10. Tampons & Pads
Girls, do not forget to pack extra pads and tampons! Bathrooms on campus may have them for free, but it’s best to have some of your own since most will charge around 25-50 cents or won’t have any at all.
Do not underestimate the need for AirPods on campus. I brought my AirPods everywhere and make sure not to forget them when I had to study at the library or at a café. Earbuds and Airpods will help you tune out the loud group of friends next to you at Starbucks and focus on your test.
12. Laptop & Phone Chargers
Chargers are the college backpack essentials I feel like people often forget about. I think that you should try to carry your chargers with you every day. Eventually, after my sophomore year, I was able to get extra chargers for both my laptop and phone. I was able to leave a pair at home, then have a pair for when I was on campus or studying else.
13. Tide Pen
One thing that I wish I would have had in my college backpack was a Tide Pen. There are so many shirts or pants that I ruined while eating or got dirty. A Tide Pen could have prevented or alleviated some of these stains and helped me from buying more clothes.
Related: 12 Vital Dorm Room Cleaning Supplies You Need To Have a Tidy Room
Please bring sunscreen with you while on campus. I used to have the spray version and had in my backpack’s cup sleeve with my umbrella. I used it, especially during the summer when I had to work on campus and during any day in the fall or spring when it was so sunny. Trust me, you might get sunburnt, especially if your campus doesn’t have trees for shade or you burn easily.
Finally, the last thing to carry in your college backpack is a folder. I honestly underestimated the number of times I’d need a folder in college. I thought, “Oh, what papers will I even have to carry?” After my first syllabus week, I learned how many papers professors will pass out. Folders are also useful to carry printing paper for when you need to print something last minute. Folders like these are perfect for college:
That’s it for this blog post all about college backpack essentials!
Before you go, make sure to check out more college-related content on the blog: