College Life

My “Commuter Car Kit” Has Saved Me More Times than I Can Count

published Jan 16, 2024
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smiling college student driving car
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As a commuter student who lives 30 minutes away from campus, my car is basically my home away from home on school days. I typically spend six hours on campus each day, and without a dorm room or nearby apartment to run back to between my classes or transition from day to night, my car is the only place I can go for resting up, freshening up, and makeup-and-hair touching up. It’s basically my little haven on wheels.

Of course, it would be a dream to pack my car with all my favorite comforts from home — you know, my bed, fridge, and extensive beauty and skincare collection. But obviously, that’s totally impractical. So instead I put together a Commuter Car Kit — featuring all the essentials I need each day, and would have nearby if I lived on or close to campus — that fits perfectly in the center console of my car.

Credit: Jorge Aguado Martin/Getty Images/iStockphoto

Here’s what I keep in my Commuter Car Kit and what I recommend you keep with you too, if you’re in the same boat. This list is based on all the products I’ve found I’ve needed most, after over a year of commuting to my classes. Feel free to edit this list based on your needs and preferences.

  1. Deodorant
  2. Lip balm
  3. Perfume
  4. Gum
  5. Hair ties
  6. Hand sanitizer
  7. Makeup remover wipes
  8. Tide To Go
  9. A mini emergency kit, with the following in it: bandages, Advil, a mini flashlight, gauze, and ointment
  10. Snacks packed in individual or resealable wrappers, which may include the following: a small bags of chips, granola bars, and candy (but nothing that would melt!)

My Commuter Car Kit has my back in case of emergency, or if I just need a few minutes to reset after a three-hour lecture. It’s my secret weapon to conquer the chaos and stress that comes with college.

Raniya Fatteh


Raniya is a 19-year-old community college student living in the Bay Area. She is studying sociology and wants to use it to pursue digital marketing or data analytics. She hopes to transfer to a four-year school in 2024. She was on the color guard team in high school and was part of a competitive civics team called We the People. She also developed a passion for statistics during her first semester of college and now works as a statistics tutor. She loves to travel and has visited over 30 countries so far.

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