Moving in weekend at Uni....any tips?(45 Posts)
DD is off to uni next month and I'm wondering how manic the moving in weekend will be? I read on the uni's website that you should be prepared to be sat in long traffic queues. How long are parents allowed to stay whilst we help unpack? ....any other tips?
You mean at the halls ? I've helped at 3 , they are pretty busy , although a constant stream rather than all at once . I've always managed to park , depending on which floor your DD is on & if there are lifts just how tiring moving everything in . Although lots of parents were helping , none stuck around , including me . Hard not to be really emotional , but tried to not show it too much . Think they're keen to say goodbye so they can start making friends . Really awful drive home each time - felt very gloomy !!! Happy & proud they're at uni , but missed them all terribly . Their first year I made up a goody box with useful items in for them & some basic food & a few yummy treats in case they felt homesick .
Have tea things and a quick lunch handy for when you arrive and some beers/ cider, easy dinner etc for them to share around when you've left and they are all sorting their things out still.
Yes halls, I'm totally dreading it. I'm thinking it might be best if I book a hotel for the weekend so my DD can sort her stuff on the Saturday and we could meet up on the Sunday for a quick food shop before I drive the 200 miles home
probably shedding a few tears on the way home.
I do the first drop off and that will be it until the Summer. They have to get themselves there are back any other time on their own, so the first step for me is to ensure everything is packed well so that if they have to get themselves back at the end of the year, as I cannot guarantee I'll be able to make it, due to working such long hours and being alone, that they have everything compactly packed for a solo return and possible storage. So preparation is foremost in my mind, not the trip or drop-off itself. I know my kids are the minority these days, but I do like to see it as a positive that they can unpack quickly with perhaps less possessions than others and just relax.
I do have 2 to drop off this time and I already know it will one day as I am coming from outside the UK it is just as well. First is a student houseowned by the university, there are only 4 bedrooms. Next might be a challenge with a large campus so again the compactness of packing might prove useful as I am expecting not to be able to get that near to the flats.
Staying near neither universities, wouldn't be able to afford to stay near them, already I can see Guildford booked up and prices hiked. Beware.
I wouldn't dream of sticking around, it's the students' time of their lives, not the parents!
A large block or campus might have timed tickets. If they haven't then it might mean it's not too manic!
I was wondering how you know what equipment a self-catering kitchen will have. We don't want to cart up utensils and crockery for nothing.
Great tip about packing food for that first meal or two isthistoonosy
Generally there won't be any equipment bar a cooker and fridge. My parents came up after a couple of weeks and I sent them home with a box of kitchen stuff that we had duplicates of within the flat, stuff like kettle and toaster.
If you do want to stay up for the weekend, I would leave plans fairly flexible - the Sunday after I moved in there was a big lunch organised for everyone in my block and I'd have hated to have to miss that to have lunch with my mum!
Thanks greatbigwho. That makes things simple. We are planning to stay overnight as its too long to do in one day, but we're planning to sight see rather than cramp DS style by seeing him. Though we've not booked yet as we'd hate to have to cancel if results don't pan out!
Arrive as early as you can and leave as soon as possible.
This made moving ds very easy after the experience we had with dd when we got in fine but then took her to an audition and tried to leave at lunch time - that was awful! ( same uni - ds did try not to go there , it was his 5th choice but all worked out in the end)
Take a door wedge so that your DC can leave the door open - makes meeting others easier.
And cakes/biscuits/sweets to share.
A couple of multi-socket extension leads. Plugs are never in the right place!
If you are not sure on what to take then you can do a collect in store order in the closest Dunhelm Mill (or wherever) and then you just collect the bits you actually want on the day. We've done this with bulky bedding when we haven't know the bed size.
With my 4 we have always taken as little as possible as its a nuisance for them to have too much junk - it's do easy for them to buy cheap stuff at the local supermarkets or charity shops.
I think you have to play the day by ear. One of my DC ended up moving into halls where everyone else wasn't checking in until the next day so it ended up that I stayed another night in my hotel and we had a treat time exploring the town and getting bits and bobs for her flat. It actually worked out really well.
I don't think you need to assume you will feel upset. I wasn't and I'm close to my kids. I was excited for them. It was a bit odd getting used to a quieter house but i liked it too. Uni holidays are really long so it's not as though you don't get to see them.
Try not to be offended if your child doesn't want a protracted goodbye and wants to go and spend time with their new flatmates etc straight away.
Thanks, I've decided against staying the weekend. I'll drop her off and leave her to get on with it, my dd is quite shy so me and her dad hanging around won't help.
Some good tips, thanks.
I think you're right, OhFuds. The parents' job is to carry everything from the car, take back suitcases/boxes that aren't needed (those Hall rooms are tiny) and hand over some money before disappearing.
If they don't have everything they need you will find internet shopping works well! You really do not have to think of everything! Amazon is great as long as your DC remember to pick up the parcels!!! When they move into a house for 2nd year, they will work out with other students who brings what but a quick trip to the local B and Q or large Tesco usually sorts out that missing loo brush or washing up liquid. It really is not like equipping an army on manoeuvres!
Last year we stayed the night in a nearby hotel. Too far to do the return journey in one day really plus dh & I hadn't been there before so wanted a chance to see where dd would be spending the next 5 years. We barely for a chance to say goodbye after unloading the car as dd had to rush off to an induction session. She decided against meeting us for dinner in favour of going out with her flatmates but we met up for breakfast the next day before we returned home.
It wasn't the goodbyes that were hard, more the following weeks
My eldest went to halls last year, our slot was 1pm. It was a large city centre and the meet/greet team were standing at 50m intervals for 2 miles before we hit the University area. They were just standing there with t-shirts with arrows on to show people the correct route, it was very simple clever. Lowered my stress as well, as it is stressful being in a strange city, stuck in traffic with just a 15 minute timeslot to adhere to that is still two miles away.
When we reached the roundabout there was traffic control in place so only cars going to the uni could use the approaching roads. We had a print out we had to show so the Greeters knew what Hall to direct us to.
As mentioned our slot was 1pm, we arrived in the queue at quarter to (we had left home at 4am). We were directed to a parking spot and the unloading team literally descend on you to empty your car. One nearly took my cool box and thermos! A team carried everything, I wasn't allowed to carry anything other than my handbag, they kept saying "let us, it is our job".
They had the room key, but this might differ and you may need to go to the accomodation to collect the key.
As soon as the car was empty we had to move the car, it was literally parked for less than five minutes.
We were shown to the room and we immediately took an inventory of the room. You need to look for marks on the walls or chips out of the desk or wardrobe doors. If the room is ensuite then you need to look really carefully to see if there is black mould anywhere, do the taps turn easily and do they drip? Flush the toilet and check the cistern refills normally. Put the shower on and let it run, then turn it off to see there is no build up of water in the shower tray.
Check under the bed, in drawers, behind desks etc., to check for stains on the carpet. Don't be afraid to move the bed to the other side of the room to check the carpet. My top tip, and this sounds totally daft, I take coloured string and put it around the edge of any stain on the carpet, mattress etc., and take a photo on my mobile.
Write anything you find on the inventory, also put Photos taken in capitals underneath.
Clean the room before unpacking if necessary. I cleaned the bathroom and dusted throughout. It wasn't a dirty room, just stale.
As we were unpacking, the others in the flat started to arrive. It took us about two hours to unpack, set up laptop and printer, make up bed and unload kitchen stuff. We had too much kitchen stuff so some lived in crate in the room.
Whilst unpacking we were writing a list for anything we had forgotten. We then went to get these leaving eldest to meet others in the flat. We dropped these off, had a cup of tea (made by one of the other parents) and then us and two other sets of parents left. We felt very strongly that this was the correct thing to do.
However, one girl in the flat had a DM who was staying the night. In the room!! They were going out to eat and then she would be leaving the following day. You could tell that this was the DM idea and not the daughter and it was awful as the DM was in the bedroom and calling her back in when she was in the kitchen getting to know her flatmates.
I felt incredibly sorry for her to be honest, such a shame.
At Southampton we were told (ahead of time) that the drop off was 45 mins then you had to move your car. We were directed to a spot near the hall, a group of students descended on us and helped carry everything to the room.
DS took a small first box of stuff into the kitchen and met his new flatmates while we made up his bed (I know, but I'm his mum and the room looked more homely with his duvet in it). Then we unpacked a couple of larger bags/cases into his bed for him to put away.
DS came back, a few quick hugs and we were off.
The 45 minute thing was a really good idea as DS needed to get in with being at college, and we needed to let him.
Btw, we had a cheap collapsible crate that we filled with cartons of orange juice, some extra pasta, and a few jars of pasta sauce to store in his room so DS had some basics for a first meal, and a source of vitamin c to see him through the first couple of weeks and help stave off freshers flu!
I don't think anyone needs to stay long. Just help unpack and let them explore. Goodbye lunches and evening meals are not a good idea. Catered halls are easy - no crates of food needed. No kitchen equipment either bar a few bits and pieces for snacks and tea/coffee.
The most important thing is to get on with your life and not over invest in theirs. The next few weeks can be great for both of you if you let them be. Work out what you want to do and get on with your life.
Do you think it's best to drop them off with food supplies to last for a few days or go to the supermarket with them once they've unpacked?
Rosco, cupboard essentials and a few things for the fridge. Think David Attenborough and the Mummy Otter - just swim away and let them hunt and forage on their own.....
Thanks kitty, I need to keep channelling being the Mummy otter!
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