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Ultimate guide of what to pack in your ‘first night’ box

First Night Moving box. What should we pack?

Recent research by the Office for National Statistics shows that more people are moving out of London than in. And with it, more people are moving to the countryside, and in particular young families. Whether these movers are looking for more space, greener areas or a more peaceful way of life, the largest city in the UK is slowly shrinking
London moving statistics

There’s nothing worse than arriving in your brand new home… and realizing that everything you need for a comfortable first evening is spread across 16 different boxes. Hence, a box or bag specifically for you to have all of the essentials in one place and easily identifiable so that you can have a cosy cup of tea before the full unpacking begins.

So, whether you’re moving into a city, out to the countryside or even abroad – make sure everything goes smoothly with this guide on what to pack in your ‘first night’ box.

This box should have two parts (this could be a box and a bag or just two boxes) and should travel with you or be the last items to be packed onto the van; so that they are easily accessible at the other end. Ideally the box/bag would travel with you, in case your movers are delayed as your essentials will be readily available while you wait. Moving morale improves when everyone in the family can have a quick tea and a biscuit!

What to pack in your First Night Box

A “First Night Box” is essential—it contains the essentials you’ll need immediately upon arrival, saving you from rummaging through numerous boxes. Here’s a comprehensive checklist for your First Night Box:

Personal Items

  1. Toiletries: Toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, soap, shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, deodorant, skincare products, and toilet paper.
  2. Medications: Prescription medications, pain relievers, and any daily vitamins or supplements.
  3. Glasses/Contact Lenses: Including cases and solutions.
  4. Change of Clothes: Comfortable clothing for the next day and pajamas for the night.


  1. Bedding: A set of bed linens for each bed, pillows, and blankets or sleeping bags if beds aren’t set up yet.
  2. Nightlight or Flashlight: In case you haven’t set up your lighting yet or need to navigate in the dark.


  1. Towels: At least one bath towel, hand towel, and washcloth per person.
  2. Toilet Paper: Pack a few rolls to ensure you don’t run out.
  3. First Aid Kit: Including band-aids, antiseptic wipes, and any other basic first aid items.


  1. Snacks/Beverages: Non-perishable snacks, bottled water, and other beverages to keep you hydrated and fed without the need to cook.
  2. Disposable Utensils: Plates, bowls, cups, and cutlery to get you through meals without unpacking kitchen items.
  3. Basic Cookware: If you plan to cook, include a pot, pan, cooking utensils, and a dish soap with sponge for cleaning up.
  4. Coffee/Tea Supplies: If you’re a regular coffee or tea drinker, include a small coffee maker or kettle, coffee/tea, sugar, and creamer.

For Kids and Pets (if applicable)

  1. Toys/Entertainment: A few favorite toys, books, or games to keep children occupied and comfortable.
  2. Pet Supplies: Food, bowls for food and water, leash, waste bags, and a toy or two to keep them comfortable.

Important Extras

  1. Chargers for Electronics: For phones, laptops, and other essential devices.
  2. Important Documents: Identification, lease or home purchase papers, insurance documents, and any other important papers.
  3. Basic Tools: A toolkit with essentials like a screwdriver, hammer, nails, and wall hooks for quick fixes or installations.
  4. Cleaning Supplies: All-purpose cleaner, paper towels, and trash bags for any immediate cleaning needs.
The optimal approach involves preparing a designated box for each room in your new residence, as outlined above. Packing these boxes with essentials like cleaning supplies or chargers will enable you to promptly equip each room with its fundamental necessities. Either way, being organized is key to a smooth move. For more home tips, visit:
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