When I first arrived in Auckland in February I took MANY photos of all the things that I brought with me, convinced that I would write an informative blog about how organised I was. I recently went back to the folder on my laptop where these photos were stored and giggled to myself… thinking of all the things that I have with me that I have never used and the vast multitude of belongings that have been important for me whilst I have been here that, in fact, I never thought would be! So I will give you a (hopefully!) more well-informed blog on what I have found useful, now that I have been in Auckland for almost three months. *time flies! *

Of course, we all know about the ‘essential’ bring-to-uni items such as a duvet and shampoo; so instead of talking you through what you (probably) already know, I will tell you about slightly smaller things that have a) either made Auckland feel more like home or b) helped me personally focus more on my studies!

Coloured Pens

As silly as it may seem, stationery has become a huge part of how I study. I always found in high school that I would read textbooks/extracts and highlight certain points, but nothing would really go in. SO! I resolved to write out all my uni notes by hand this year and the best way to encourage me to do this is with lots of colour! I have found that by making my notes appear to be more visually attractive, I am far more inclined to go back and re-read them in the future. Mind mapping with colour is also super handy to help remember things visually, so I’ve found a wealth of pens and pencils dotted around my room to be a helpful asset.

Of course, not all of us are massively into pens, but everyone studies differently, so I would recommend bringing with you something like this that motivates you to work. And that is different for all of us!


Photos of home

I always knew when I left home that I wanted a wide variety of memories pinned up next to me and I got on to sorting this out well before anything else in fact. However! It has proven to be a source of comfort to me over the last three months and it certainly brightens up my pin board! I’ve noticed that many first-year students have a feature wall from home too, not only to remind them of home but also to make our small rooms that extra bit more welcoming.

However, I don’t think the photos necessarily should be of home, a friend of mine said to me recently that he’d rather put photos up of his time in Auckland and that to me sounds good too! I think it’s more the reminder of happy times and that extra bit of colour on my wall that brightens up my room.

On a more practical note, having a ‘to do list’ has proven to be quite convenient. On the first day I wrote a reminder to sort out my AT hop card which I did in a right old flap, thinking it would be super important to have immediately, but surprisingly I haven’t used all that much. (This might be because my hall is 5-10 minutes away from most places that I need to be…)

With regards to your first arrival in halls though, please don’t stress too much about leaving a few things at home, as moving in is far too stressful even if you’re convinced you’ve remembered everything! On the very first day I had to take an emergency trip to The Warehouse to buy a clothes airer; that I later would discover wasn’t all that necessary! (I’ve only used it twice…) Another note that I cannot stress enough is to BUY A FAN AT LEAST 3 MONTHS before the weather gets too hot because as discovered by so many of us… they sell out FAST and the weather in at least the first few weeks here is far more humid than many other places in NZ.

Don’t worry too much about overpacking, but stay organised in what you are bringing as hall rooms are probably a tad smaller than what you may be used to, but I believe that it is equally as important having those personable things that are unique just to you to make this space your own as well as the essentials.

(Feat. My bottom drawer that will never close properly! 😊)