You may have been through this already, or are doing this today! Move in day at school. You may be a parent or a student, here are some tips to make this day a little easier on you.

Make sure you have everything ready the night before. Have all of your bags and suitcases ready to go before you go to bed. There’s nothing worse than last-minute stress in the morning, and if you’re pretty sure you have everything the night before, you can miss this huge headache.

  • Get there early. At move in, you’ll be waiting in line at some point. The earlier you get there, the less time you’ll spend in these lines. Be warned though, people will arrive early. You can’t beat everyone, but if you get there slightly before move in begins, you can probably avoid wasting time.
  • Get to your dorm first. If you beat your roommate(s) to your dorm, you’ll have first choice on which side of the room or which furniture is yours. This can make a big difference in comfort, so pray that your roommate isn’t trying to beat you too!
  • Consider bringing a handtruck or dolly. If you have a lot of heavy items, bringing this for moving in will be a huge help to you. If your college has a ton of stairs, well, there’s always the wheelchair ramps.
  • Paper sacks and boxes are awesome! Pack up most of your miscellaneous items in paper sacks and boxes. The US Postal Service offers free boxes which you could use to carry a lot of stuff.
  • Unpack the heavy stuff first. If you’re bringing up a hulking mini-fridge, a large bulky TV, and a huge microwave, take those to your dorm first. Heavy items are the worst to carry, and you’ll be glad you’ve got the worst done.
  • Stay hydrated and cool. Dorms tend to be hot, especially on move in days: Drink a lot of water and try your best to stay cool. Dress appropriately.
  • Move everything at once. Don’t split up your unloading any more than you have to. Make as few trips to the car as possible, and do them all one after another instead of splitting them up throughout the day.
  • Meet your RA. Introduce yourself, shake hands, and try to become a bit friendly. Your RA can be your best friend or your worst nightmare, and it’s best to start off on a good foot.
  • Leave some extra time. Things can go wrong, relax — you may realize you forgot something important, or a line might take longer than you thought. If you plan to give yourselves extra time, you’ll be more prepared to handle any unexpected bumps.
  • Take care of odds and ends. You’ll have little things to do here and there — buying books, filling out random forms. Get those done, and save any receipts/forms they give you in return. Afterwards,  you’ll have lots of time to meet people on your floor and to get to know your roommates, so spend some final quality time with your family — go out to dinner or walk around campus. It will mean a lot to them.