The Best Gift Ideas For College Students

By Nadia Carmon | May 13, 2019 | Gift Ideas



We all know that gift hunting for anyone can be quite difficult. This is especially true of young people as they start moving into both teen- and adulthood.

While young kids, from preschool to elementary-school age, are generally very easy to please, as they grow and develop into young men and women, their interests change. As a result, it becomes harder to choose presents for a birthday or for the holidays.

We’ve devised this list of the 5 best gifts ideas for college students to make the task of finding gifts for your college-age acquaintances a little bit easier for you.

In our experience, the best presents balance practicality and trendiness. So we’ve focused on those that are immediately useful and have long-term applications.

Got any more? Let us know in the comments below.


1. Gift Card


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Sometimes, trying to choose an exact gift for someone can be risky business.

This is because we often go off of the assumption that we know someone. But, unfortunately, whether it’s our best friend or our own child, we don’t always know everything they like - The colors they prefer to wear, what sort of patterns they tend to avoid, the sort of music they like, etc etc.

This is why gift cards made our number one spot for the best gifts you can give a college student.

Gift cards are the most thoughtful gift you can give because you are essentially giving the gift of freedom. You’re saying i’m going to give you something that you can use to buy anything you like. And that speaks volumes as a gift.

Be sure to buy gift cards that aren’t specific to a certain store, however. That’s important because your college student will be able to buy anything they want, anywhere they want. Perhaps they want the latest Amazon echo dot, a cup of coffee, or a portable charger. With gift cards they can get them all at their own convenience, in person or online...

Whether it’s for a birthday or a holiday gifts, gift cards are always in style.


2. A New Laptop



Laptops are one of those gifts that have immediate practicality to any and all college students. This could be a great idea for multiple people to contribute to, being on the slightly pricier side of gifts.

This is especially true if you know your college student is still using an old or hand-me-down laptop.

After consistently using a laptop for four good years in school, particularly older models, it’s probably time for an upgrade.

Gifting a college grad with a new computer is therefore a perfect idea that will be much appreciated. While the common dorm room is equipped with enough space for a desktop, we recommend laptops because they can be easily taken anywhere on or off campus, and have longer term use once the student graduates, as well.

There are many ways to go about buying a new laptop; such as following research tips like these.




3. Professional Wardrobe



While it is difficult to know a person’s taste in clothes, even if you are aware of their general fashion style, it’s not impossible.

It is best to buy clothing that can be worn either in any situation, professional or casual; or those which work only in casual settings.

If you’re trying to search for clothes for a college student, you should know some of the top fashion stores that are great if you’re on a budget.

In addition, you can also help them by giving them gift cards, as well.




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Send a thoughtful gift to your favorite college student showing them how much you care. There are countless items you can include in your care package, including their favorite candies, stationery for study sessions, gift cards, clothes, jewelry, socks, and books.

Alternatively you can purchase a care package gift online.


Check out these fun care package gift box options:


5. Gym Membership or Fitness Gear


 As we get older, going to the gym is one of those things that can be pushed to the wayside. Although many college campuses have a gym, a gym membership can provide the extra motivation we all sometimes need to get our weekly or daily workout done.

Of course, a fitness tracker, fitness tech in general, or even workout gear like active wear or a water bottle, also makes great reminders for our college students to keep their health in check.


6. Ipod + HeadPhones


One gift that your kids will get multiple uses out of, including using them at the gym or while they study, is an iPod or a similar music-playing device and a nice pair of headphones.

Whether it’s music or Netflix, everyone needs a good pair of headphones with as much noise cancellation as possible. In addition, wireless headphones are useful for multitasking; such as listening to a class lecture video while cooking.


7. Bluetooth Speaker


A Bluetooth speaker is a great gift for college students because it allows them to share the things they love: particularly music.

These days you’ll see these speakers dotted all along college campuses; as they are an easy way for kids to come together and interact.

There are several different versions available, but provided the set up is easy (connecting a device, such as Iphone, to the speaker), most bluetooth speakers are an easy, no-fuss gift idea.


8. Instant pot

The best gift ideas for college students: Instant Pot


Last on our list is the instant pot.

An instant pot is a kitchen appliance that has multiple uses, sometimes including a pressure cooker, slow cooker, egg cooker, yoghurt maker, rice cooker and steamer, among other uses.

They make it easy for college kids to prepare their own meals rather than always depending on takeout or the dining hall.

Because instant pots basically do everything, we can safely say that each and every kitchen in a dorm or even your college student’s first apartment requires this instant pot.

It replaces about 9 kitchen appliances and thus helps to reduce the amount of space used; as well as the amount of dishes you need to clean.

Additionally, it has the ability to steam, sauté, sterilize and even warm, all by pushing a button.

Gift ideas for college students should be useful as well as recreational. Usefulness does not mean only for work or studying, however. It simply means that they should be something your college student will use every day.

Once again, gift cards make an excellent gift because they are so flexible… They allow your college student to buy anything they could need or want; be it groceries, textbooks or an Ipod.

However, if you decide to purchase specific gifts for a college student, be sure to take notes of their general interest and then find gifts to match them.




Need some more ideas for gifts for college students? Check out these other articles:





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