If you’re going to be starting college soon, there’s one thing you’re bound to hear someone say: “Your roommates aren’t going to be your best friends. Chances are they won’t even be your friends at all. All you have to do is co-exist in the same living space, get along and respect each other, get through the year.”

Scary, right? Don’t let that turn you off to the idea of living with new people before you even meet them!

Every group of roommates has their problems, and trust me so did mine, but at the end of the day they are the people you come home to and they’ll be there when you really need it.

My roommates and I had our ups and downs, but throughout our time together we made some pretty great traditions through the bonding activities we did, here were some of our favorites!

The Rainbow Wall

At the very beginning of this year, when I first started this blog, I shared with you one simple thing that my roommates and I did to add personality to our room: create a rainbow wall out of paint swatches!

The wall, which took nearly an hour to put up, was our first bonding exercise as roommates. We blasted the Guardian’s of the Galaxy “Awesome Mix” soundtrack throughout the room, left our dorm room door open and paused as new people stopped by to meet us, and told stories about our lives back in high school.

Throughout the year any and every person who visited our room made a comment about the wall and how it added personality, color, and a home-y feel to the otherwise stark white dorm rooms on campus. We also added string lights all over the room, banners, posters, signs, motivational tiles, and so much more.. but the color wall was definitely the highlight.

A few weeks ago we moved out. One at a time. On our last full day that we had together, we had a big roommate bonding day.

We decided to end our time together the same way it began, with the rainbow wall. We put on the same soundtrack and told stories about the year. One of my roommates, Tori, had the idea to film the process and speed it up in a cute little video.

So here we are, the rainbow wall coming down: (I’m the one in the red!)

Midnight In-N-Out Trips

I distinctly remember when this tradition began: it was right before midnight the week before Finals our first semester. My roommate Tori was upset over something happening with her boyfriend and we were all stressed out of our minds for our upcoming exams, projects, and papers. Tori and I were sitting in our shared bedroom and she mentioned that she was a tiny bit hungry, I nonchalantly mentioned that In-N-Out is the only place open this late and asked if she wanted to go.

Her face lit up, we made eye contact, and next thing I know she was screaming for one of our other roommates to join us. Animal fries have never tasted so good.

The picture above was taken on our last midnight In-N-Out run together. We ambushed Tori with this one. She was at her boyfriend’s room and one of my other roommates, Nikki, and I both decided that it was the perfect night for an In-N-Out run, our last night all together before we moved out. Our fourth roommate, Emily, was already in the room so we texted Tori “Can you please come back? We have something really important we need to talk about.” She came back, concerned and confused, and we ambushed her with our final In-N-Out date as roomies!

Car Rides

finalroommatedateThis is a small little tradition: at the beginning of the school year I was the only one with the car, so whenever we had to get around town I was the one who drove us there! By the time it reached our last roommate date 3/4 of us had our own car, but we still decided that I would drive so that we could re-live our old adventures.

Holiday Decorations

christmasThroughout the year I’ve shared with you a little bit about how we’ve decorated our room. From Halloween to Christmas and beyond, we absolutely loved making our dorm room feel like home together!

Domino’s Dorm Room Dinner Dates


This isn’t really visible in the picture above, but each roommate sitting there has their own personal small pizza sitting next to them on the bed. One of our roommates, Emily, decided one day that she desperately wanted pizza. I, however, am gluten-free due to an allergy and the only place that delivers with decent gluten free pizza in the area is Domino’s. Emily is gluten free sometimes based off of preference so she decided to get Domino’s delivered, and she decided to pay for everyone’s pizzas!

It was super sweet and became a small tradition where we would have random nights where we all stayed in and ate pizza together and hung out.

Dance Parties


In college, the stress absolutely does get to you. It’s important to be able to find a way to take study breaks and make them productive. Having dorm room dance parties definitely helped that!

There were even a few times in which Tori and I would break out our Just Dance 3 game for Kinect and just do a song or two to help us let loose.


Did you have any bonding traditions with your roommates? Any tips for those about to live with roommates for the first time?


P.S. Shout out to my roommates from last year for letting me use pictures/videos of them on here!

Roommate Bonding Traditions
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18 thoughts on “Roommate Bonding Traditions

  • June 3, 2015 at 10:16 am

    I love this! It is so important to get along with your roommates or else it ruins even being at your own home! Bonding is the best!

    • June 3, 2015 at 2:45 pm

      I completely agree! Even if you aren’t close friends, it’s still really nice to have bonding days so you feel relaxed in your own room.

  • June 3, 2015 at 4:48 pm

    Aww this is so sweet! I wish I could implement a happy-roomies-experience but sadly my current roommate is a 15-pound cat. Dinner dates with her basically include her breaking my lap trying to eat whatever I have, but hey. Roomies gotta bond somehow. 😀

    • June 3, 2015 at 6:03 pm

      That is so cute! Cats make the best roommates 🙂 Now that I’m at home for the summer, I’m in the same boat!

    • June 4, 2015 at 10:16 am

      Aww don’t feel like that! Trust me, there are definite downsides to having roommates as well.

  • June 4, 2015 at 9:01 am

    Oh how fun! This broad back some fun college memories. Before Christmas break, we would all pile in the car with hot chocolate and drive through neighborhoods to look at all the lights 🙂

    • June 4, 2015 at 10:15 am

      That sounds like so much fun! Christmas light looking is definitely one of my favorite things about the holiday season 🙂

  • June 4, 2015 at 8:02 pm

    A good dance party is the way to go. Any standout dance moves?

  • June 4, 2015 at 8:48 pm

    I love the idea about the rainbow wall, such a neat idea to bond with you roommates. While I was reading your post I kept thinking how neat it would be if you did the rainbow wall and each person wrote something interesting about themselves on it and have whoever visited write on the wall too.

    • June 5, 2015 at 8:44 am

      That is such a cute idea! I wish I had known it sooner! I’ll keep the one in mind for the future 🙂 It definitely would be fun to get a little collection of everyone who has come into our room!

  • August 4, 2015 at 10:25 pm

    I also thought that I will have a monster and mysterious roommate. Seriously, that’s what on my mind. Weird imagination right? But I was wrong. I have a very jolly and friendly roommate. Her name is Autumn Dale, I really love her. She helped me with my assignments and projects. We always have our Friday night. Doing random things, laugh till dawn and talking nonsense things. I never though that I will enjoy my college life as much as this! Thanks to my roommate!

  • December 29, 2015 at 10:47 pm

    Hi! I love this website so much!!!! So some of the traditions my roommate and I have are watching Hannah Montana at midnight, studying until 2am with our string lights on while listening to Frank Sinatra, and watching food network 🙂

    • January 11, 2016 at 1:19 pm

      Yes Hannah Montana, string lights, and Frank Sinatra are all fantastic! I usually listen to a Frank Sinatra station on Pandora while I study 🙂 Glad you have such great memories with your roommate!

  • August 4, 2016 at 1:52 pm

    I love this! My roommate and I are moving in together next week, and we’ll have to use some of these! I’m interested to learn you’re gluten free, too! I have Celiacs and dairy issues, so I feel your pain 🙂

    • August 6, 2016 at 3:22 pm

      So glad you liked this, Amanda! You’re going to have a blast with your roommate I’m sure 🙂

      Being gluten free is definitely rough, but it’s gotten much easier over the years so I hope being gluten free in college goes smoothly for you. I’ve considered writing more about being gluten free in college.. do you think that is something you would like to read more about?


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