Pre‑Departure Checklist


Moving away from home for the first time can feel a little stressful. To help lighten the load, here are our top 10 tips!

10 Essentials to pack for University

Bedding, chargers and power bars... there's just too much to remember. Here is handy list of items to remember to pack before you take off!

  • Bedding (blankets, mattress pad, pillows)
  • Towels
  • Toiletries
  • Laptop
  • Health & Medical supplies
  • Clothing, hangers & laundry basket
  • Organization items (stationary, storage bins, trash can, calendar)
  • Recipes so you can whip up your favourite meal!
  • Pictures (personal photos, posters, things to make your room feel like home)
  • Miscellaneous (umbrella, backpack, sports equipment, bedside lamp, extension cords)

Set Up Your Student Bank Account

Don’t leave this one to the last minute! You will need your student account ready to go when you arrive.

Create a Budget Plan

Start adding up those extra costs. The small things can sneak up on you.

It may be the first time you're on your own so it's important learn how to be smart with your money. Budgeting is an awesome skill to learn because it will help you watch your spending throughout your time at Dal and beyond. Downloading our online budgeting tool will help you with this!

Also, check out our strategies for living affordably for tips and inspiration. 

Buying your essentials

To save packing or shipping, it might make sense to buy some of these items after you arrive.

Tip: If possible, pack for one season at a time and switch items if you go home during breaks.

Practice your laundry skills before you leave home

Know how to do a load of laundry (without ruining a single article of clothing) before you start your new adventure at Dal!

Bring an up to date resume and look for a student job

To help keep your budget on track and support yourself while at university, bring your up-to-date resume and look for a job that is flexible with your academic schedule. 

If you need help finding jobs and developing your skills you can contact Career Services.

Practice your cooking skills before you leave home

Cooking for yourself and cleaning up after yourself are two incredibly useful tools for all post-secondary students! 


Bring your up-to-date health records and health insurance information

This info is always useful to have on hand if required. 

Familiarise yourself with paying bills

There's a lot to think about when moving, especially when it comes to setting up utilities and managing your bills. It's important to know when your bill due dates are in advance to pay on time and avoid paying interest!

Connect with Dal

There are many different ways to connect with Dal on Social Media:


Be sure to download the Dal Mobile app to connect with other students, discover useful services and resources on campus, and stay up to date with important information from the university.


"Learn how to budget before coming [to university] as your money goes so quickly."

"Start learning to cook, clean and look after yourself before you go to university  – it makes life so much easier." 

"Use cash [rather than pay by card] so you're more aware of how much you have left. Split the cash into bills and social!"