Packing Guide

Packing Guide

Student Housing provides detailed packing recommendations for life in the residence hall. Review their lists carefully and use this guide as a supplement for summer.


  • Davis is a casual student community and typical Northern California town with hot days, cool nights, and a relaxed atmosphere. The summer months, June-September, are extremely hot. High temperatures average 90°F/32°C during the day and 56°F/13°C at night. Humidity is very low, usually 15-30%.
  • In the summer, students most commonly wear shorts and T-shirts. At night you might need a light jacket or long sleeve shirt. Bring your swimsuit to use the pools on campus.
  • For the summer months we recommend
    • Shorts
    • T-shirts
    • Sandals
    • Athletic shoes/comfortable shoes for walking
    • Swimsuit
    • Sunglasses
    • Hats
    • Light jacket and/or long sleeve shirts
    • Small fan
    • Water bottle.
  • In addition to climate, consider your lifestyle and things you may do while in Davis. Davis is within driving distance of Yosemite, Tahoe in the Sierra Nevada and other places of natural beauty, which may be cooler and require more items. You may also visit the San Francisco Bay Area which is much colder and more urban than Davis.

Average Yearly Temperatures

Household Goods

  • Residence halls have beds and mattresses but no sheets, blankets or pillows. 
  • Check any specific information you receive from Student Housing that may apply to your fall residence assignment. The following household items generally WILL NOT be included in residence halls:
    • Linens: pillow, blankets, sheets (extra-long twin size!)
    • Small appliances: hair dryers, irons, electric kettles
    • Kitchenware: plates, silverware, cups
  • Consider mattress dimensions and electrical requirements specific to the United States when deciding what to bring from home. The U.S. uses a 110-volt system.

Cell Phones

  • U.S. cell phone providers use a combination of GSM and CDMA technology. If you wish to use a  phone from your home country, you may purchase a SIM card from one of the GSM providers, AT&T or T-Mobile. Both carriers’ SIM cards are sold in Davis and online.
  • Many freshmen choose to buy a phone in the United States that functions on U.S. networks. The most common plan is to get high-quality phone for low cost with a two-year contract. No-contract plans are paid month-to-month, but you generally pay a higher price for the phone, or the selection of phones is more limited. There are also no-contract, pay-as-you-go options.
  • Absolute Cellular, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon have stores in Davis. Pre-paid and no-contract phones like Boost Mobile and VirginMobile are available at OfficeMax, Target and other retailers.

Miscellaneous Items

  • Medication: There are plenty of pharmacies in Davis, but foreign brands may not be available here, and  you should bring a supply of prescription medication and a copy of the prescription with you.
  • Bicycle accessories: Davis is a bicycle-friendly town and your most likely mode of transportation. If you already own a helmet, lights or a lock, bring them.
  • Power adaptor: 220V to 110V

Carry-on vs. Checked Luggage

  • When you travel, some items should stay with you rather than in your checked bags. Keep the following items with you on the plane:
    • I-20
    • Passport
    • U.S. cash for arrival
    • Credit cards
    • Pen, for immigration forms
    • Your Davis address (hotel or residence hall)
    • UC Davis staff contact information
    • Phone charger and power adaptor
    • Medical documents and any medications
    • Airport transit information, if applicable