UNDATED -- College students are gearing up to go back to school. And that means shopping for gear that can provide some of the comforts of home. Consumer Reports has several products it has tested that are top grade for any dorm room or student apartment.
A mini-fridge is a must. However, Consumer Reports has found that some compact fridges have trouble keeping their cool. But not the $220 Frigidaire FPH44M4. It has a decent-sized freezer, too.
And then there's that must-have jolt of caffeine first thing in the morning. How about a coffee pod machine? The DeLonghi Nescafé Dolce Gusto EDG455T for $130 is top-rated. The machine is quick to brew the first cup, and pods are easy. No messy coffee grounds to get rid of. And its compact size is a real "perk" for small spaces.
And this one's a little outside the box-a breakfast sandwich maker for hunger attacks, whenever they hit. Consumer Report checked out the $30 Hamilton Beach Sandwich Maker 25475C. All you do is build your ingredients, press a button, and minutes later ... a nice egg sandwich.
And don't forget the microwave. Consumer Reports recommends the $180 Panasonic Genius Prestige NN-SD681S. But make sure you check the rules for your campus dorm to be sure they allow microwaves. Some colleges ban appliances or set wattage limits.
Complete Ratings and recommendations on all kinds of products, including appliances, cars & trucks, and electronic gear, are available on Consumer Reports' website.