Top 5 Things to Keep in Your Backpack

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Keeping a few key items in your backpack will make being stuck in any kind of situation a bit easier. I narrowed down a list of the top 5 things to keep in your backpack during your daily college commute.


You’d think that in a list of things to keep in your backpack, having one would be obvious, but I’ve come across people who tried to go without a backpack for parts of college.

When it comes to backpacks it’s less about fashion and more than function. In high school you had a smaller campus and a locker to leave things in between periods so you wouldn’t have to lug everything around, so something cute and small could be fashionable and functional. But in college you may be away from your dorm for most of the day without being able to run back quickly.

Making sure you have a durable backpack that has the right amount of space for things you need is crucial.

Most people on my campus had North Face backpacks, but for a good reason, they’re roomy enough to carry multiple classes worth of books, a laptop and anything extra. I bought mine my freshman year (pictured above) and it’s still in perfect condition almost ten years later.

Water Bottle

Having a water bottle is a lifesaver. You’ll be walking a lot more and keeping hydrated is important regardless, so having a water bottle around is a no-brainer.

If you buy a reusable one you can carry it around, fill it up anywhere there’s running water and if you’re someone who’s always thirsty you’ll be set. You also won’t have to constantly buy bottles and if you’re having a casual meal you won’t have to pay for a drink!

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If going to school in New England taught me anything, it’s that it can rain at any time regardless of what the sky looked like when you left the house in the morning. More than once my ass was saved from being soaked from keeping an umbrella in one of the side pockets of my backpack.

Obviously, if it doesn’t rain much where you are, an umbrella isn’t probably the most useful of things and you’ll feel like it’s just taking up space and adding weight, but once you’re stuck in the rain on the other side of campus and no umbrella, you’ll be thinking twice about that.


Hear me out. I don’t mean bring a medicine chest with you, but if you tend to get headaches when you’re stressed, keeping a bottle or a pill case with a few pills in it can’t hurt. Ladies, having a bottle of Midol or your preferred cramp eraser tucked away in your backpack can be a life saver for surprise visits from Aunt Flo.

I carried around a bottle of excedrin with me since I was prone to headaches and migraines due to stress. It was also useful when someone else was in pain and didn’t have anything with them.

Something Specific to You

With this I mean something you think you’ll need on a daily basis that would be an inconvenience or unable to deal with not having.

For me it was bandaids and lotion. I have eczema that breaks out on my hands, and dealing with paper in notebooks and textbooks dried them out even more. Having the lotion on hand kept my hands moisturized and the bandaids made it easy for a quick fix for anything the lotion couldn’t fix.


Have any other must-haves you keep in your backpack? Let me know in the comments!



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