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First-Night Box For Moving Tips: What to Pack

Moving to a new home can be a pretty chaotic time in anyone’s life. After you arrive at your new home and your moving company unloads your belongings, you will likely have boxes everywhere, which can make finding essential items next to impossible. So, how can you avoid playing a game of hide and seek with simple things like your toothbrush, body wash, and favorite foods? Well, packing a first-night moving box will help manage this issue and avoid chaos the first night in your new home.

Whether you’re moving within the city or planning a long-distance move, everyone needs a first-night box for moving.

We put together a first-night-in-new house checklist you can use to prepare for your upcoming relocation. This list is designed to help you stay organized and ensure your first night in your new home is as stress-free and enjoyable as possible.

Here’s everything you need for your first-night box for moving:

The importance of a first-night box

If you don't prepare a first-night box, you might find it challenging to feel at home when you first move in. You'll also need to open several boxes to find clothes, chargers, toiletries, medicine, or bedding to put on your bed. This can complicate the unpacking process and make your first night frustrating for everyone.

With a first-night moving box, your everyday essentials will be easily accessible and all in one place. You'll know exactly where everything you need is so you can relax, feed the family, or entertain the kids after a long day of moving. This will reduce everyone's stress levels and even help you achieve a stress-free first night in the house.

A first-night box is especially important if you have kids or pets you need to care for. Always consider their needs and what they need to be happy and comfortable.

Preparing your first-night box moving list

To help you prepare for the move, we created a first-night in-new-house checklist. Use it to pack your first-night moving box and ensure you have everything you need for you and your family. Before you move or pack your first-night box for moving, you'll need to ask yourself the following:

  • What's for dinner?
  • How will you keep your kids entertained? 
  • How can you keep the little ones on a routine?
  • How will you make the pets comfortable?
  • What are the sleeping arrangements?
  • Does anyone take any medication?

Take some time to plan your ideal first night in your new home. Consider your unique needs and use our first night in the new home checklist to plan ahead. If you’re working with a moving company for household moving services, make sure you properly label your first night box. This way it’s easy to access when you arrive at your new home. 

First night in new house checklist

Now it's time to start packing your first-night moving box! Depending on the size of your family, you may have a few first-night boxes. As long as everything is labeled accordingly for your long-distance movers, you shouldn't have a problem on moving day. 

Here's what you need for your first-night box moving list:

Sleeping Arrangements

  • Air Mattress. When you arrive in your new home, it is likely that you will not have your bed assembled. Therefore, you will need somewhere to sleep on your first night. This is where an air mattress will come in handy. This option may not be as comfortable as your own bed, but after a long day of moving, you will be more than happy to have somewhere to lay your head.
  • Blankets and pillows. Along with your air mattress, you will need a blanket and pillow. These will keep you warm and relaxed during your first night in your new home. Make sure to pack enough materials for your entire family.
  • Pajamas. At the end of your moving day, you want to be as comfy as possible. Make sure to pack a set of pajamas to ensure that you and your family will have something cozy to sleep in.
  • Other sleeping accessories. Some people require various accessories when they sleep, such as a breathing machine or sleeping cap. If you require such items, pack these essentials into your first night box in order to have a good night of sleep.
  • Kids’ sleeping essentials. If you have little ones, don't forget to also include their favorite stuffed animals, night lights, or toys. 


  • Toothbrush and toothpaste. One of the last things you want to do when you move into your new home is to search for your toothbrush and toothpaste. Packing these items will ensure that you stay on top of your daily hygiene routine and won’t skip a beat.
  • Soap, shampoo, and conditioner. After a long day of moving, you may need to shower and wash your hair. Keeping these items close by will keep you from searching through every box in your house or running out to the store to purchase items you already own.
  • Bathroom essentials. For the first night in your home, you will need items like towels and tissue. Including these items in your first night box will save you both time and money. This will also make you feel comfortable in such a new space.

Kitchen Necessities

  • Non-perishable items. The first night in your home will likely mean that you will not have your refrigerator and freezer running. Having a number of non-perishable food items on hand will ensure that you will have something to eat while setting up your essentials.
  • Plastic plates and utensils. You will definitely need some plastic plates, cups, and utensils. This will keep you from digging for dishes every time you want a drink or something to eat.
  • Cleaning supplies. With paper towels and disinfectant on hand, you can easily wipe down the counters before eating. You can also clean up after you eat.

Personal Items

  • Clothing. It may take you a few days to get all unpacked and situated in your new home. Because of this, you will need to include a few days of clothing in your first night box. By doing this, you will be able to relax and not worry about which box you need to grab your next outfit from.
  • Electronics. After an extensive day of moving, items like your telephone and tablet will likely need to be charged. It would be terrible to be in your new home and area with a dead battery. To prevent this, make sure you include all of your chargers in your first night box.


  • Books. When you move into your home, chances are that your cable will not be installed and most of your belongings will still be packed away. To avoid boredom, you may want to include a few books to keep you busy.
  • Board Games. Board games are a great way to get everyone in your family involved. This will help fight off the terrible moving blues.

Emergency Materials

  • First aid kit. Moving usually comes along with a number of minor injuries. Although they may be minor, they will still need attention. Having a first aid kit in your first night box will make patching up the little scrapes and bruises much easier.
  • Box cutter. During your first few nights, you may spend a great deal of your time unpacking. Having a box cutter handy will help speed up the time you spend unpacking all of your precious materials. However, when you use a box cutter, make sure you utilize box cutter safety tips.
  • Medication. Moving requires a lot of hard work and heavy lifting. Because of this, you may have a few aches and pains. Packing a few medications along for the ride will help ease the pain you may experience during your move.

Pet Supplies

  • Collar and leash. If you have an animal, then you will need to make certain that you have all of their necessities. Their collar and leash will be needed so that you will be able to take them outside of the home. Since they will be in a new area, you will need to keep them on the leash so that they do not roam.
  • Food. Just like you, your pet will need to eat after a long move. Include their food and a few snacks for them in your first night box.
  • Litter box: If you have cats, don't forget to set aside litter and a litter box you can easily set up.

Last-Minute Checks Before You Seal the Box 

Before you wave goodbye to your old home, you'll want to give your first-night box moving list one last check to ensure everything is there. Consider creating a first-night-in-the-new-house checklist you can print out and check off one by one to stay organized.

You'll also want to consider setting aside some moving supplies, like trash bags and box cutters, so you can easily open your box and start unpacking in the morning. Other last-minute essentials you may accidentally forget to consider including are:

  • Cleaning supplies or kitchen essentials
  • Important documents and paperwork
  • Phone and laptop chargers
  • Towels
  • Pet carriers or crates
  • Extra batteries or light bulbs
  • Bottled Water
  • Household items

Packing can be a challenging task to take on by yourself. With the help of our Allied Van Lines movers, you can achieve a stress-free transition to your new location. If you need help with any last minute moving tasks, our team is here to help. We offer various moving services and packing services you can choose from for your custom moving plan. We also have free moving tips and checklists readily available online to help you prepare. 


It's important to note that everyone's first-night moving box looks different. What you decide to include will depend on your family's needs. As long as you take inventory and label your essential boxes correctly, you can achieve a stress-free transition into your new home. 

Contact us today for a free quote to get started!