Day 1 Moving Survival Kit !

Your essentials boxes will contain the basic things you need to make your new place livable while you unpack in a systematic and organized fashion. These boxes should be specially marked and come off the truck first (which means they go on the truck last—no problem, since they are the things you need most and will probably be packed last). They should be put in a pre-determined place in each room, away from other boxes and will be the first things you unpack. You may find it helpful to pay attention for the week or so before you move to see what things you use in each room every day. Here are some items that are likely to be in your essentials boxes:


  • Linens and pillows
  • Pajamas and slippers (and possibly a robe)
  • Alarm clock if you need one
  • A change of clothes for everyone
  • Something to put your by now very dirty clothes in (consider using the hamper to pack the master bedroom essentials, since it is easy to spot and will be needed right away)


  • Toiletries you use daily (soap, shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrush, deodorant, etc.)
  • Wash cloths or equivalent body scrubber
  • Towels for each person
  • Hand towel
  • Toilet paper
  • Shower curtain and bath mat
  • Hair ties


  • Plates, cups, and utensils—most people use disposables for the first few days to make things easy, but non-breakable re-usables are fine, too
  • Large spoon and a cutting knife
  • Dish soap and sponge
  • Dish towel
  • Can opener
  • Telephone if you still use a landline
  • Coffee pot/ kettle
  • Medium stovetop pot

Your First Day Pack is going to include more of those things you are going to need all day every day while you unpack. You will probably want to pack this one in the car if you are driving, rather than in the moving truck, as you are likely to need some of its contents even before the truck gets unloaded. Some things to remember:

  • First Aid kit
  • Medications
  • Phone chargers
  • Tools (hammer, screwdriver, picture nails, tape measure, box cutter)
  • Light bulbs
  • Flashlight
  • Extension cord
  • Reusable water bottles/ water filter if you use one
  • Paper towels, trash bags, scissors
  • Small stereo or iPod dock
  • Snacks
  • Pens and a marker
  • Post-it notes/ notepad

If you have children, this kit should also include:

  • A few favorite toys and books
  • Changing supplies
  • Formula/ kid snacks
  • Extra blankets
  • Change of clothes

If you have pets, you will also want to create an essential pets box, which you should treat as an extension of the First Day Kit. It should be equipped with the following:

  • Pet food and dishes
  • Carrier/ Leash
  • Treats
  • Litter box and litter
  • Pooper scooper

Remember, this is not a comprehensive list. Every household is different, so give some thought to what you will need for your first 24 hours in your new place.


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