Student carrying Hampshire College water bottle

What to Bring

This list will help you decide what to pack for your move to Hampshire. With the help of the sustainability student group New Leaf, our "What to Bring" list now features tips and resources for making your Hampshire lifestyle a little "greener." By bringing energy-efficient appliances and light bulbs for yourself or to share, as well as recycled or reused materials, you can contribute to reducing Hampshire's carbon footprint and protecting our environment.

Please note: Hampshire College does not endorse any of the particular companies or products listed on this page. Rather, this information is an example of the types of products you might purchase, or types of establishments at which you might acquire them.

What You'll Find When You Arrive

Each room is pre-furnished with one bed frame and mattress; a desk and chair; an open closet rod to hang clothes; and a dresser for each resident. Storage space in your room is limited.


  • Linens for an 80-inch mattress; pillow, towels
  • Blanket, mattress pad
  • Clothes hangers
  • Toiletries
  • Laundry basket or bag
  • Laundry detergent
    • Hampshire uses Maytag High-Efficiency Washers (Seventh Generation, Ecover, and Biokleen are good brand names.)
  • Desk lamp, non-halogen
    • Make sure your desk lamp has a compact fluorescent lightbulb (CFL). 
  • Power strip or safety-fused surge protector and UL approved extension cords
    • Appliances and devices that are plugged use energy even when they're not in use. Power strips that can be turned off prevent unnecessary use of electricity.
  • Refillable water bottle
    • Hampshire's tap water is clean and healthy to drink. If you are concerned about the taste of tap water, consider bringing a water filter.

Optional Items

  • Snacks
  • Can opener
  • Flashlight or headlamp
  • Iron (with automatic shutoff)
  • Sewing kit
  • Drawer lining, not contact paper
  • Plants, knick-knacks
  • Wall-saver removable poster tape
  • Calculator
  • Computer
  • First-aid kit (plastic strips, aspirin, cotton balls, etc.)
  • Storage containers
  • Computer or MP3 player speakers or stereo (w/headphones)
  • Plates, cups, cutlery
    • Bringing a set of reusable eating ware can help reduce waste on campus. You can bring it to campus events or use it in your room for snacks!
  • Bicycle with lock
  • Microwave oven not to exceed 0.7 cubic feet or 800 watts
  • Refrigerator not to exceed 3.0 cubic feet
  • Laundry drying rack
    • Dryers run on fossil fuels and emit carbon dioxide. Reduce your carbon footprint by drying clothes on a drying rack or clothesline. Most drying racks can be folded up and stored out of the way when they are not in use.
  • Printer
  • General cleaning supplies
    • Many conventional cleaning products are petroleum-based and contain potentially dangerous chemicals. We recommend the purchase of nontoxic, biodegradable, non-petroleum-based products (Seventh Generation, Biokleen, Mrs. Meyers, and Options for Life are good brand names).

Notes on Appliances:

If you are living in a double, consider talking to your roommate before school starts to plan appliances.

We strongly encourage that you use the full-size refrigerator in your floor's lounge rather than bring a mini-fridge for your room. If you still decide to bring your own refrigerator (not to exceed 3 cubic feet), please purchase an Energy Star-labeled product that will use less electricity.

Each lounge in the two traditional-style dorms (where most first year students will live) has a flat screen TV with access to cable, and the ability to connect to a computer. Students are welcome to bring a TV for use in their bedroom, but be aware that there is no cable service in student bedrooms. 

Leave at Home

  • Halogen lamps of any wattage
  • Incandescent light bulbs
  • Weights
  • Oil lamps
  • Pets
  • Cinder blocks/bricks
  • Ceiling fans
  • Wall/Ceiling stickers (such as glow-in-the-dark stars)
  • Lofts
  • Candles, torches, incense, flammables
  • Dartboards
  • Paint guns, bb guns, air guns
  • Contact paper or wall paper
  • Electric/kerosene heaters
  • Hot plates and any heating unit with exposed heating element
  • Air conditioners
  • Water beds
  • Freezers
  • Deep fat cookers
  • Nails/hammer
  • Dimmer switches
  • Curtains/draperies
  • Bottled water

Furniture and Supplies

Consider purchasing second-hand furniture and other supplies (dishes, lamps, storage containers) at tag sales or thrift stores before classes begin in the fall. If you are living in a double, talk to your roommate before school starts to coordinate appliances and other items.

Thrift stores in the area include:

  • Salvation Army:
    310 Russell Street (Route 9), Hadley, MA 413.582.0403
  • Goodwill:
    183 University Drive, Amherst, MA 413.253.4182
    971 Bridge Road, Northampton, MA 413.320.4911
  • The Hospice Shop:
    18 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 413.586.0193

Buying a computer before arriving?

Learn more about student discounts and recommendations from Hampshire IT. Also, check out the ratings of computers on 23 environmental performance criteria to reduce your carbon footprint.


You can easily reach many places in the area by bike. It takes around 20 minutes to bike to the Hampshire Mall (3.8 miles), around 25 minutes to bike to Amherst (4 miles), and about 40 minutes to bike to Smith College/Northampton (7.8 miles), and there are bike racks on the front of all PVTA buses.

Hampshire also has a bike shop located in the Robert Crown Center where student workers perform free bike maintenance and repairs.

Stay In Touch
With New Student Experience Office
Snail Mail
New Student Experience Office
Hampshire College
893 West Street
Amherst, MA 01002