5 Dorm Luxuries That Aren't Luxuries After All

5 'Luxuries' You Definitely Need For College

They sound like luxuries, but they're not.

OliviaAM
OliviaAM
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As I finish out my first year living on campus, I thought I'd share five things my parents and I decided were luxuries I didn't need that ended up being sort of necessary.

1. A Minifridge/Microwave

OliviaAM

My parents bought me the unlimited meal plan, and I was living in a single dorm, so there was really no need for a fridge or a microwave, right? Well, let me tell you, when you have a 102 degree fever and you live on the third floor of a building that's a 10 minute walk from the dining hall, you're going to want something to eat from your room. Or when you stay during break and can't afford to Postmate every meal or go to Main Street twice a day. Pop tarts and ramen noodles you have to heat up with warm sink water can only go so far. At least get a fridge.

2. Room decor

OliviaAM

I didn't bring any pictures or posters to hang up on my walls because I didn't trust those command strips and I really couldn't afford a lot in the way of decor. As a result, I left up my decorations from big/little week almost a whole six months ago because they're the only decorations I have in my room, and it's nice to have something on the walls.

3. A really good fan

OliviaAM

If you get stuck (or in my case, unknowingly choose) a building without air conditioning in a state with 99% humidity about 99% of the first couple months of the school year, you're going to want a REALLY good fan in your room. This fan is an investment. On a related note for humid climates: bug spray.

4. Extra towels & sheets

OliviaAM

You don't know what your laundry schedule is going to be like. You don't know if your floormates are going to leave a ridiculously huge puddle outside the shower that you want to mop up- or you accidentally drop your towel in. Try to have at least one extra of each.

5. A good laundry basket 

OliviaAM

I chose my laundry basket because it matched my color scheme for my dorm, and it was like $3. What I didn't anticipate was how horrible walking up and down three flights of stairs with that thing full of clothes was going to be, plus my detergent and fabric softener. I get bruises every time I do my laundry. Also, as you can see, this one broke. If you're going to be carrying the basket a long distance, get a plastic one you can carry in your arms.

What are some things you didn't think you'd need but were wrong about?

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52 College Student Discounts That Are Extremely Real And TOO Easy To Use

31. Goodwill - 20% off on Tuesdays with college ID
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College is great.

But college is also expensive AF.

The cool thing about that is everyone knows that, and everyone — businesses included — knows college kids can't afford to spend *too* much money that they do NOT have. So you know that student ID you have?

It gets you college student discounts. Lots of them.


Entertainment

1. AMC Theaters

Discounted tickets on Thursdays

2. Apple Music

50% off.

3. Cinemark

Discounted tickets.

4. Regal Cinemas

Exclusive deals!

5. Spotify

Spotify Premium for $4.99/month!

6. New York Mets

$10 tickets with college ID.

Technology

8. Apple

Free pair of Beats with Mac purchase!

9. Best Buy

Exclusive deals!

Exclusive deals

10. FedEx

20-30% off shipping!

11. Microsoft

Multiple discounts!

12. Sprint

Multiple discounts!

13. Verizon

Exclusive deals!

Insurance

14. Allstate

20% off.

15. Geico

15% off.

16. Nationwide

Exclusive deals!

17. State Farm

25% off!

Travel

18. Amtrak

10% off and bonus points!

19. Chevrolet

Preferred pricing

20. Choice Hotels

15% off!

21. Greyhound

20-40% off!

22. Jiffy Lube

$10 or 10% off with college ID!

Education

23. Barnes & Noble

Multiple discounts!

24. Inkjet Willy

10% off with coupon!

25. Wall Street Journal

$1/week for 15 weeks!

Clothes

26. Aerie

10% off!

27. Billabong

10% off!

28. Champ Sports

10% off $50 purchase!

29. Charlotte Russe

10% off total purchase!

30. Forever 21

10% off full-price online purchase!

31. Goodwill

20% off on Tuesdays with college ID!

32. JCrew

15% off with college ID!

33. Kate Spade

15% off with college ID!

34. ModCloth

10% off!

35. Toms

Free shipping!

36. Topshop

10% off!

37. Urban Outfitters

10% off with college ID

38. Vinyard Vines

15% off with college ID!

Food

39. Arby's

10% off!

40. bd's Mongolian Grill

Student Night - $9.99 bowl of stir fry!

41. Buffalo Wild Wings

10% off!

42. Burger King

10% off!

43. Chik-fil-A

Free drink with a meal!

44. Chipotle

Free drink with a meal!

45. Dairy Queen

Student Meal Deal!

46. Dunkin Donuts

10% off!

47. McDonald's

10% off!

48. Subway

10% off!

49. Taco Bell

10% off!

50. Waffle House

Other

51. 1800Flowers.com

20% off!

52. Sam's Club

Discounts vary by location!

Cover Image Credit: ASMR Darling//YouTube

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Coming Home From College For The Summer Is Much Needed

Wait, how do you drive a car again?

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Since finals week began, I believe I can say for all college students that we were ready to come back to our hometowns for the summer. We had grown tired of eating at the dining hall, spending countless hours in the library, and pulling laundry from the dryers for it to still be damp. Being home for the summer rids you of those worries and only provides a sense of comfort and security with a furnished home and bedroom to yourself. We sometimes forget how things were before college, with a fully stocked refrigerator and even a dishwasher to keep things clean. Coming home often makes life much easier.

Coming home means revisiting all of your favorite places around town — restaurants, parks, or museums — with fresh eyes. Being away from these places for months on end only causes you to develop a deeper appreciation for the little things. In my case, the first thing I did upon arriving home was take a trip to my favorite local coffee shop. Not only is the coffee delicious, but going back to the shop itself also brings back numerous memories made over the past four years.

That is one of the best things about coming home — it's as if you're rediscovering parts of yourself that you left behind.

Being back in your hometown also enables you to reconnect with only friends and classmates whom you haven't seen in months or even a full year. Whether it be going for a walk together or grabbing breakfast, being able to update one another on your year of college life makes for great connections. You oftentimes find yourself missing your old friends more than you thought, but once you all get together again, it seems like nothing has changed.

One of my favorite parts of being home is spending more time with my family. I have never felt so grateful for home-cooked meals or a real washer and dryer until I stepped into my house again. Rather than talking on the phone with my parents about our days, I can sit down with them at the kitchen table and have a conversation in person. I also never realized that I would miss my parents — or my dog — as much as I did over the past year.

Though finding activities to pass the time can sometimes get "boring" in one's hometown, spending some time away can reinstate plenty of ideas. My sister and I found ourselves making a list of things we can do throughout the summer, and though some of the things we had done before, it sounded so much more exciting after spending the school year in a different city.

In the end, coming home makes you appreciate your town even more.

Even if you didn't love it before, being home for just a few months keeps you from taking life's finer things for granted. Especially when it's summer, you can relax on your own couch without the stress of school in front of you. Enjoy your city while you can, because it is always there to welcome you back.

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