48 Best Gifts for College Students That Will Make All the Difference
Ah, college, the place where things finally get interesting! If you’re studying away from home, you’ll be fully immersed in college life, with lots of classes to fill your day, lots of parties to fill your night, and the study sessions peppered in-between. If you’ve already been through college, do you still remember those days? Now that you have someone close to you embarking on this great academic (and social) journey, it’s time to provide some useful gadgets you wish you had at the time. Scroll down for the best gifts for college students to make this experience truly unforgettable.
Best Gifts for College Students
Fujifilm Instax Smartphone Printer
College is the time for making memories with friends and classmates. But this is the 21st century – nobody is printing digital photos anymore. So, how do you still achieve that aesthetic Polaroid wall without a Polaroid to be found for miles? With the Fujifilm instant camera, college students can snap a picture and hold it in their hands in less than 15 seconds, and develop those images in just 90 more! Featuring Bluetooth compatibility and the filters teens love, Fujifilm mini printer is a perfect gift for any student with a picture-perfect group of friends and a wall in dire need of some decoration.
Segway Ninebot Electric Kick Scooter
Inevitably, at some point in their schooling experience, students in college will find themselves with back-to-back classes on opposite ends of campus. Running like a maniac is always an option, but odds are your student would much prefer a gift to make the journey a more dignified affair. With a Segway scooter, a student can travel almost 20-miles per hour, getting them to their lecture with plenty of time to spare and not a drop of sweat in sight. The Segway electric scooter supports up to 220-pounds for as much as 25-miles on a single charge, yet is still lightweight enough that your loved one can take it to classes without a problem.
Nintendo Switch Mario Red & Blue Edition
Even with homework and studying to do, a college student needs a chance to unwind from time to time. The Nintendo Switch is the ideal console for the gamer looking for a break from strenuous work; Small, portable, and functional on and off the big screen, it won’t crowd students in their micro-sized dorm, but still delivers quality gameplay. The Nintendo Switch system comes in a variety of themes, ranging from nostalgic options like Mario and Animal Crossing themes to more neutral, toned-down sets appealing to any gamer in need of a de-stressor.
Feelcare Digital Picture Frame
If physical photos aren’t really your college kid’s style, gift them the photo frame made for the tech-savvy student. The Feelcare photo frame is a digital frame capable of storing hundreds of photos on its 16-GB memory. Students can instantly upload photos to their frame the moment they snap the shot; Later, simple touch screen functionality allows them to scroll through their memories and relive the highs of college. In conjunction with the free corresponding app, the Feelcare smart photo frame makes sharing photos and experiences easy, fun, and perfect for college.
Truth or Drink
For many students, a central part of the college experience lies in the opportunity to socialize with peers of the same age. However you feel about a college student spending the night with friends you don’t know, show your loved one your support with a gift truly meant for the college crowd. Truth or Drink is a party game that brings friends together as they bond over embarrassing secrets and cheap beer. The game is easy to learn and accommodates up to 8 players at a time, making it ideal for the college environment where your student is still discovering themselves and their friends.
Acer Convertible Laptop
No two people use their computer the same way, and no company appreciates that fact quite like Acer. The Acer Chromebook is a 4-GB laptop with versatility at its core, so whether your college student is a writer, an artist, or a YouTube pursuer, they have the power to work in comfort. Every Acer can be ordered with exactly the accessories a student needs, from a mouse to a headset, a mousepad, or sleeve, and features such flexibility and durability that every student can enjoy their laptop in their own individual way.
Fitbit Sense Advanced Smartwatch
As stressful as the college experience can be, make sure your student has the resources to take care of their mind and their body day and night. The Fitbit is a gift for those students that struggle to take care of themselves when the work piles up; Measuring heart rate, blood oxygen, body temperature, and more, your student can learn the physical symptoms of stress and work to improve their coping mechanisms in the process. And of course, this watch presents the time and date front and center, too, helping students to keep track of their schedule as they continue to work on themselves (and hopefully their essays, as well).
Bose Sleepbuds II
With partying roommates and crazy campus shenanigans outside, a little white noise can make all the difference between a good night’s sleep and a set of dark bags come daybreak. Bose sleep buds are clinically proven to improve sleep quality for those who struggle to rest, potentially giving your college students the energy they need to dominate every final and essay this year. Sleepbuds block out noise while playing neutral, relaxing tones, promoting calmness and peace of mind so that the brain can at last drift off. The 10-hour battery will lull your loved one to sleep and keep them that way from dusk to dawn, regardless of the noise college might try to throw their way.
JBL CLIP 3
Sharing bathrooms with strangers is never ideal. College students might not feel comfortable leaving their phone outside the shower blasting tunes while they clean, and rightly so – theft might not be too common, but it’s always a possibility in such a public setting. Fortunately, the JBL Bluetooth speaker is wireless and totally waterproof, meaning nothing is stopping it from hanging out in the shower with your loved one. An integrated carabiner supports listening on the go, and keeps students’ hands-free as they scrub up to the music of their favorite artists.
Phomemo D30 Portable Label Maker
Getting organized can make a huge difference in a college student’s routine. Studying, writing, and even relaxing is easier when a reliable system is in place, so help your student establish some order with a gift as cute as it is useful. The Phomemo label maker prints custom labels, logos, QR codes, and more at just the press of a button, ensuring an end to the chaos that so often descends upon a college dorm. Once removed, the labels leave no residue behind, and the only trace of the Phomemo’s work will be the stellar GPA your student will be showing off to friends.
Portable Movie Theater
Movie night just got a whole lot more awesome for college students and their friends! The Cinemood projector turns movie night into a more exciting experience by playing Netflix, YouTube, and more upon a big screen of a student’s own design. Stream cult classics out on the quad, or invite a few close friends to binge a favorite series until the sun rises in the morning. With educational Disney content already loaded to the smart mini projector and endless streaming potential, this simple gift provides hours upon hours of endless enjoyment for the movie lover in need of an escape from the college routine.
Mini Voice Recorder
For some students, taking notes and absorbing a lecture at the same time is just impossible. As long as they have the right gifts to support them, though, a college student can still excel during their time at school. With the high-powered voice recorder, it doesn’t matter if your student misses a word or two during the lecture – it’s all saved among the 16-GB of memory this powerful device boasts. The mini recording device only records when audio is heard, making the most of its expansive memory from beginning to end. But don’t be overwhelmed by the vast storage: hook up the voice recorder to a computer for easy browsing if and when you need it.
Get Out Gear Camping Blanket
Experiencing the great outdoors with a group of college friends is fun – until the temperature drops, that is. Get Out Gear is designed to prevent that regret when the cool night descends and it’s time to bundle up for bed. While ripstop nylon exterior blocks winds and water from chilling the spine, soft, insulated filling ensures a student is toasty and warm until morning. College is the perfect time to explore interests like camping, but for the students that don’t always do their research, a quality gift like the packable blanket is necessary to help make the process of exploration a positive one.
havit Laptop Cooling Pad
Laptops aren’t designed to accommodate the crazy hours a college student works. A student can’t stop working with deadlines approaching, though, so it’s up to your gift to keep them working up until the final moments. The havit laptop pad is an important gift for the student whose laptop has had it with all-nighters; By preventing overheating through the use of metal mesh, this college gift keeps a student’s laptop plugging along until the i’s are dotted and the t’s are crossed. Built-in stands even make the process of finishing what your student put off more comfortable, providing an ergonomic set-up for the procrastinator hoping to avoid carpal tunnel.
SignalVault Credit Card Protector
Hackers and thieves don’t need to get their hands on your college student’s cards to do some real damage, and the odds are your student isn’t always as careful with their Visa as they should be. If you want to protect your student’s bank account from the threats that come with the virtual realm, the SignalVault card protector is the shield you’ve been wanting. This gift comes straight from Shark Tank to your student’s wallet, and is capable of preventing digital theft without any batteries, cords, or extra effort on your student’s part. College is expensive enough without the threat of hacking, so do your part to shield the student in your life with the affordable, practical SignalVault immediately.
NumWorks Graphing Calculator
With mathematics or hard science, college students often have a heavy course load before them. So reliable, high-quality tools are vital to supporting their academic research. The graphing calculator is a staple of the hard sciences toolkit, often required to chart complex equations and identify data trends over time, but it can cost a pretty penny for a student already strapped for cash. By gifting the powerful NumWorks calculator to your favorite academic, you are providing a future scientist with the most essential tool for their future success. NumWorks is an intuitive device that students can master with ease. Compared to the alternative, more expensive calculators, its high-resolution color screen and 20-hour battery life are welcome bonuses.
Smartphone Screen Magnifier
College courses mean college-level articles. College-level articles mean low-quality PDFs with text so fine that the college students will be squinting at the phone screen for hours. With more students than ever relying on a smartphone to complete their assignments and read assigned articles, isn’t it time that technology adapted? For the student fed up with eye strain, this cellphone projector is a must-have gift: capable of displaying a phone screen at 2 to 4 times the original size, reading through lengthy articles has never been more relaxing. The magnifier is lightweight and portable, allowing its users to bring it to lectures, to the library, or wherever they might want to cram in some study time. Durable, organic materials ensure that wherever your student might need a screen, then it can make the journey.
Concrete Rollerball Pen
Nothing gets a student in the back-to-school mindset better than an assortment of exciting, original school supplies. While taking notes can feel like a drag, the Gessato concrete pen introduces an element of fun to the affair. Unlike a typical 0.7 mm pen, the sleek pen is a sturdy stone utensil designed to erode over time – in other words, the more he/she writes with your gift, the more comfortable it becomes to use over time. By the end of the semester, your loved one will be left with a custom pen contoured to their own unique grasp. Whenever your loved one reaches for a black pen to take notes, make sure their reaching for the pen built to accommodate specifically them.
Tooletries Silicone Toiletry Bag
Dorm life often means shared bathrooms. If a college student is faced with the struggle of a busy bathroom situation, he understands the value of a handy carrier bag that is recognizably their own. Lugging toothpaste, floss, shampoo, and all those essential toiletries to the bathroom, each day is a part of the routine more than deserving of an upgrade. The Koby bag adds the perfect balance of fun and function to the ordeal. The colorful exterior ensures an easily identifiable accessory; leak-resistant materials and plenty of storage keep trips to the bathroom neat and orderly. From the dorm room to the sinks and even into the shower, the Toiletry bag is built to go everywhere a college student might need it.
Memory Foam Travel Neck Pillow
Maybe an 8 am lecture is just a bit too early for your loved one. Maybe the dorm is lacking in comfort. Whatever the case, the CORI travel pillow is a gift practically designed with the college students in mind. An adaptable pillow that wraps around the neck, CORI offers support wherever boys and girls need it most. Wrap the 2 memory foam cushions around the entire neck, or chose to focus the soft support to one side – either way, the memory foam pillow is comfortable and durable. They will adore the bright color options this fun gift offers, and are sure to sleep better than ever (even when they can’t make it back to the dorm room)!
Mekamon Berserker V2 Gaming Robot
College is a time to explore your interests with new, like-minded individuals. For the intelligent students with a passion for tech and programming, the Berserker robot provides a fun opportunity to enjoy the latest technology and engage with friends. The Berserker gaming robot is an emotive, lifelike creation that your student gets to program for movement and tactics in preparation for incredible augmented reality gameplay. Play single-player mode to discover all the potential, or battle friends in battle-mode to see whose reigns supreme! Either way, this gift is sure to engage and satisfy your young designer for some time to come.
Awful Phantom Labyrinth Cube
When friends are in classes, what they need are fun, time-filling gifts that continue to engage the mind. The Labyrinth cube is the logic puzzle of a learner’s nightmares: a maze, hidden within an elusive cube, complete with secret tunnels and a confounding phantom ball. Bringing the metal ball from one side to the other will be no easy feat, but rest assured – should the maze prove too much, the cube can be opened and the ball retrieved so that they can try again. The labyrinth is the perfect logic-driven gift for college students to challenge themselves when they need a break from their stress or a distraction from a boring afternoon.
Kikkerland Crab Multi Tool
With a microscopic dormroom and a tight budget, college students likely don’t have a full set of tools on hand. From time to time though, we all could use a bottle opener or a handy set of pliers. The Kikkerland mufti-tool is the ultimate gift for college students short on space and money; a saw, blade, bottle opener, and more, this convenient crab is sure to save the day several times over the next few years. Best of all, the cute crab design makes it an accessory your student won’t mind showing off around the dorm, ensuring that even when out of use, this great gift is still catching eyes and impressing the neighbors.
Ergonomic Lap Desk
Computers have improved academic life. The access to near-limitless information through the internet and the thousands of applications to do virtually anything, from 3d animation to writing stylish and informative essays, was a great upgrade from the local library and pen and paper. Because of this, college students have to spend lots of time sitting down, which could become uncomfortable after a few hours. Here’s a good gift to provide more comfort: a lap desk, fully adaptable to the legs and a wide area to set the laptop and a drink! Lie in bed! Sit under a tree! Working on the laptop will be a lot more comfortable now!
Large Laundry Bag
“Hey man, this is the third time I see you with the same t-shirt…”. Yeah, doing your own laundry is right at the bottom on the list of “awesome things to do”, especially when your schedule is always full. But the laundry doesn’t have to be dull! Featuring waterproof and sturdy advanced oxford cloth, college kids can carry large amount of laundry from upstairs to downstairs. The shoulder straps are comfortable and can be adjusted according to height. Another good thing is that you can overflow the bag because it is extensible. With this laundry bag, college girls and boys will be able to keep those dirty clothes organized and look his best self every single day.
Nike Men's Just Do It Athletic Sandal
Athletic sandals are very underrated, but you can do so many things with them. Here’s the shortlist: go to the pool, walk around in your room, go for a walk when the weather is good, bathe in a public bathroom, take them to the class of your least-favorite teacher to make a statement, take them off and use them to clap louder at a sports event… I’m sure you’ve got even more ideas. Offer the gift of flexibility to the college kids: athletic sandals all the way!
iKeyp WiFi-Enabled Personal Safe
Your soon-to-be college student is always losing stuff. No matter how many techniques you teach her, like having fixed pockets for the same things, a wallet is lost, the phone is forgotten, and you have to get up at 3 am because the keys evaporated into thin air. Gift him this portable safe: it will keep all the valuable things together in one place, safe from impact, and also comes with a smartphone controlled lock so potential thieves turn their backs and walk away. When he comes back from college, he’ll be the one telling you where your lost items are!
Saturdays Are For The Boys Flag
Everybody stand at attention for the Saturday hymn! One hand in your heart and the other on a cold beer. Sing with me! “Saturdays are for the boys!” College doesn’t have to always be about working and studying, college students need to unwind and release the pressure. With this flag gift, they can remember what day it is, drop every chore, assignment, and book, get together with friends and seize the weekend!
Power Strip Surge Protector
A college campus never sleeps, the power is always on, and you never know when was the last time those circuits were last checked. A girl next door plugs in a dodgy hair-dryer and boom! Down goes the power. Will your laptop be the same when the power comes back on? If you don’t want your college student friend to be in this situation, gift her this surge protector, which also comes with rotating power sockets to fit all the strangely-shaped chargers that exist!
Multi Plug Outlet Extender
In these technological times, your college student might have 2, 3 or more devices that are chargeable through USB ports. There will come those days when all of them are out of power and need to be charged on the same night. Gift this outlet extender to save her the trouble of hunting down AC power sockets, leaving all her digital possessions scattered everywhere! Everything will be in the same place, nicely organized, and fully charged when the next day dawns.
Rapid Noodles Cooker
Readymade food is great, tasty and, most of all, very convenient. We all agree on this. But when a college student wants something more to his taste, without all the sneaky food preservatives, this portable electric hot pot will prove to be the perfect companion! “This is a Literature class, not a Cooking class, Miss Hawkins!”, the angry Professor Smith growls. He’ll be surprised after he gets a taste of the healthy food: “Class dismissed! Everyone grab a plate!”
Relaxing Water Painting
They teach you a lot of things in college, but there aren’t many classes in the “relaxation” department. When assignments are piling up, when that anxiety is building up until you’re frozen, just unplug. Pick up that gift your dad gave you when you became a college student, the relaxing water painting, and paint whatever is in your heart right now. When you’re done, the water will slowly evaporate, your worries will disappear, and you’ll be back to your balanced self. You look back on your list of things to do, and things don’t look so bad anymore; in fact, they’re starting to look great!
Don't Make Me Use My Teacher Voice T-Shirt
College also means making friends and finding many different ways of feeling love and loyalty. But a real connection has to start somewhere, you don’t jump straight to “let’s be friends” or “I love you!”. If you gift your college student a funny t-shirt, they will be wearing a conversation-starter all day! Relationships that start with shared laughter are bound to be great!
When you share space with someone, you will find that, no matter how distant you are from that person, you will start finding points of connection and building a relationship. A bunk bed allows you to stack your beds, your dreams, your lives, as you support each other through the vertiginous highs and abysmal lows of college. If you want to gift a friend for life for your college student, get her a bunk bed. In 50 years they’ll still be talking about those great moments!
Cocoon SLIM XL 17" Tech Backpack
Powerbank? Check. Smartphone chargers for every brand? Check. Multiple writing accessories? Check. Outstanding organization skills? Check. If you want your college student to be the MacGyver of college, with all the tools required to do anything, anytime, this organizer backpack is the perfect gift to be ready for any situation. Next-level resourcefulness detected!
Mini Fridge Electric Cooler and Warmer
The mini fridge is a basic college must-have. Dorm life comes with limited kitchen access, and now that your teen won’t be sitting down with the family for a home-cooked meal each evening, they’re going to need somewhere to store fresh food (and only age-appropriate drinks, of course). Sharing a fridge with a roommate is just asking for leftovers to be stolen; luckily, this gift is perfect for individual use and storage. Worried about limited space in your college student’s new room? This mini fridge has you covered.
There’s nothing so discouraging as actually sitting down to read your textbook for class just to get bogged down in verbose, near-incoherent jargon. Academic texts aren’t always easy to read, but you can get your college student a gift that makes their homework a little more manageable. The C-Pen Reader is a portable, high-tech device capable of reading and defining lines of text in English, French and Spanish. For students working with texts of different languages or periods, or for students managing a learning disability, the C-Pen Reader is a valuable resource for getting the most out of every reading.
Mini Toaster Oven Cooker
College kids get a bad rap for their poor diets of cereal and Ramen, but are they really the ones to blame? Some days, there isn’t the time to trek across campus to the cafeteria. Sometimes the mess hall closes before they have a chance to eat. And sometimes it’s cold and raining outside; who wants to go trudging through that? The mini toaster oven can expand your student’s meal options exponentially. No matter how strange their schedules may become, they will always be able to prepare a warm dorm meal with more nutritional merit than cup noodles.
Portable Under-Bed Personal Safe
Protecting your valuables is no simple task when you have roommates and unexpected visitors to contend with. This next gift is the storage solution of a college student’s dreams. The Lock and Roll Personal Safe is durable and secure, keeping any dorm resident’s most important possessions out of the pockets of the hall kleptomaniac. The safe is incredibly space friendly, conveniently sliding underneath a bed or closet, making it ideal for the limited quarters of a college dorm room.
Smart Reusable Notebook
A limited college budget and the constant need to replenish school supplies don’t work well together. A constant frustration of college students is the need to spend such large amounts on their basic school books. Unfortunately, you can’t do anything about the high price of a textbook; however, this practical gift can save your student the cost buying new notebooks each semester. The Rocketbook is a digital reusable notebook that allows users to save notes to the Cloud. The gift is the ultimate mix between a notebook and a laptop. Students will love writing in the Rocketbook – and professors won’t ban from the lecture hall!
Motivational Time Marker Water Bottle
Most of us struggle to stay hydrated, and college students are certainly no exception to the rule. Now that your teen is in college, you won’t be there to remind them to drink up from time to time. This water bottle is here to help, though. With a convenient carrying strap for the student on the move, the Time Marker Water Bottle makes it easy to monitor a person’s daily H2O intake. The miles between you and your college student no longer have to keep you from looking out for their day to day health.
LED Desk Lamp
With tablets, smartphones and laptops galore, we are truly living in the digital age. So why do college dorms never seem to have enough outlets for that ever-growing box of chargers? For the student with a flair for tech, this LED is the ultimate source of life. Complete with 4 USB ports, 2 outlets and an adjustable LED light, this lamp is the king of multi-functional practicality. Now that ‘s it!
Mini Coffee Maker
Coffee has come to symbolize modern college life. A thermos of coffee is as common an accessory on a college campus as a backpack. Without this liquid gold, many an all-nighter would never come to pass and countless essays would simply go uncompleted. The Keurig coffee maker ensures that the next cup of coffee is no further away than the cluttered desktop. This coffee maker is the ideal gift for the coffee snob in cramped quarters – in other words, your everyday college student.
Mini Travel Tabletop Humidifier
The dorm room is not always the freshest place to relax. Dry, recycled air can leave a student feeling under the weather. Now you can help to combat this drying by introducing to your student’s room this small-but-mighty humidifier, perfect for a shared dorm space. A good humidifier doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg; this gift can revive a student’s room without breaking the bank in the process.
Digital Alarm Clock
No one wants the take an 8 am. Sometimes in college though, an early morning is unavoidable, even despite the best-laid plans. Don’t let your loved one forget why they’re at college in the first place; when it’s time to go to class, they need an alarm clock that they can rely upon. Unlike a smartphone, a digital alarm clock won’t run out of power overnight, so they can rely on it to go off every morning without fail (for better or for worse).
Anti Theft Travel Laptop Backpack
A reliable backpack is essential for the daily trek to and from classes. Laptops, textbooks and a variety of miscellaneous goods can certainly take their toll on a backpack over the years. This durable backpack is designed to withstand the daily wear-and-tear. Additionally, this backpack features a built in USB charger and a pocket for every purpose. With this gift on their back, your favorite college student will be prepared to take on all of their lectures in comfort and in style.
Retro-Style Smart Phone Dock
Even the most studious college kid needs to sit back and chill from time to time. When there’s no more work to do for the day and a student needs to unwind, there’s no better source of mindless entertainment than the endless world of their smartphone. The Retroduck Smart Phone Dock transforms a smartphone into a vintage TV screen. It’s the perfect gift for college students looking to relax after a long day of lectures with a video or twelve before bed.
Moving into the college freshman year is a bittersweet moment. Along with the thrill of newfound freedom that university brings comes anticipation for that first taste of independence; no longer are mom and dad just down the hall if you have a problem or need support. In those moments when college life starts to feel overwhelming, a small gift from friends and families can make all the difference.
Before your loved one departs for college, make sure they know how much you care. Whether you want to make their dorm a physically more comfortable space or simply bring a touch of home to a dreary cinder block cube, with these gifts for college students on this list, you will have your young adult shouting “YAAAS” to the heavens (and to their followers as well).