Five helpful tips for taking the kids to university

The time may have come for your child to fly the nest and head to university to start an exciting new chapter in their life, and it is down to you to get them there.

This journey can be an emotional and stressful one, but follow the guidelines below and everyone might just get through the day unscathed!

Arrive in style

Chances are, your child will be heading to a strange place where they don’t know anyone else, so making a good first impression is important. With this in mind, you should turn up in a car with some credibility.

We’re not saying you should sell your car and get a new one if yours is a bit rough around the edges, just for this one trip – but if it has seen better days, you could always hire a car for the journey.

Hiring a car can give more room than you currently have in your own car, as well as it being much less likely to break down on the way.

Don’t over pack

Chances are when your child moves to university, they will be downsizing their room. The rooms in university halls are traditionally small, so packing the essentials is important as you won’t have room for anything else!

As we mentioned above, space will be a premium in your vehicle so if it doesn’t fit in the car, it’s staying at home! If anything important is left behind, it can also be posted or dropped off during a visit (if you’re allowed!).

Plan your route

Knowing exactly where you are going and planning your route beforehand is very important. As we mentioned, it is an extremely emotional time for all involved and missing your exit on the motorway is only going to make the situation worse!

Make sure your sat nav is fully charged and programmed correctly, give yourself plenty of time to complete the journey and you’re sure to drop them off in time for Freshers’ Week.

The food shop

You’ve made it to your destination, the car is unpacked and your loved one is moved into their box room. Use your newly emptied car to take a trip to the supermarket and stock up their cupboards until they burst.

It’s a good idea to buy them some fresh fruit and veg so you know they’re going to get a fairly balanced meal in their first few weeks. Make sure to buy some cupboard staples such as tinned tomatoes, pasta and tins of soup to keep them ticking over.

You might be worried about them eating proper meals, but don’t worry, students always find a meal!

Save the tears!

Right now, you’re understandably going to be feeling very emotional and will probably want to burst into tears, grabbing your child and never letting them go… But try and be cool and save the tears for the car, your last impression is just as important as your first!

If you remember these tips, the whole moving experience should go smoothly and you might just be allowed to visit your child during term time, rather than being banished for being ‘uncool’!

And when you’re having a day where you miss them more than usual, just remember; they’ll be home in three years’ time withdrawing from the bank of mum and dad on a much more frequent basis…


Photo courtesy of Lisa Dusseault on Flickr, under Creative Commons