The Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide for College Students

Gifts Ideas for College Students

It’s time to admit what retail stores everywhere have been shouting for months: holiday shopping season is upon us! We all have those family and friends who are difficult to buy for and college students often fall into that category.

What do college students need? What can I give that won’t have them awkwardly asking for a gift receipt? Rather than taking a shot in the dark, take a look at this list we compiled. Your holiday shopping will be finished in no time thanks to these useful gift ideas for college students.

14 holiday gift ideas for college students

1. Noise-cancelling headphones

It’s not always easy to find a quiet place to concentrate. Give the gift of distraction-free studying with a pair of noise-cancelling headphones. They’ll help your favorite student be productive even at a chatter-filled coffee shop or with kids shouting in the background.

2. An e-reader

Carrying around all those textbooks can be a major back strain for students. Lighten their load with an e-reader! It will hold all their books and make it easy to squeeze in some reading while they’re on the go. As an added bonus, students can save money since most e-books are cheaper than their hardcopy counterparts.

3. A recording pen

Digital recording pens are perfect for students who don’t want to miss a thing their fast-talking professor says. These pens make it easy to review lectures before a big test, clarify those illegible notes they scribbled down and spare them from painful hand cramps.

4. A single cup coffee maker

Caffeine is the driving force behind many early-morning classes and late-night study sessions. Students can skip the line and expensive tabs at their usual coffee chain and brew a quick cup at home instead.

5. A portable hard drive

There’s nothing more devastating than a computer crash that wipes out all of your hard work. A portable hard drive will save a student’s life by keeping safe copies of everything from study guides and term papers to photos and music.

6. A portable phone charger

Students are constantly on the run from work to class to the library. All of that commuting makes it tough to find time (or a free outlet) to charge their phone. A portable phone charger is the perfect solution for the student whose phone is always dying.

7. A white noise machine

College students need all the help they can get in the sleep department! A white noise machine can calm a student’s racing mind and assist them in getting a good night’s sleep. The extra rest will help them focus in class and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

8. A fitness tracker

Staying healthy is no easy feat when you have to juggle work, school, a family and a personal life. Give your favorite college student's efforts a boost with a fitness tracker! They’re a sleek reminder for students to get enough exercise and eat healthy snacks throughout the day.

9. A subscription to Audible

It’s hard to find time to do all that assigned reading. That’s where Audible comes in! A monthly subscription lets your college student listen to audio books while commuting, working out or running errands.

10. A stylish messenger bag

Every student needs a sturdy bag for hauling their books and devices. Sure, it’s practical, but it might as well look good, too! Choose something high quality and professional so it can double as an attaché case on job interviews.

11. A tablet

Tablets might be the most useful all-in-one tool for students. They can use it to take notes, view online presentations, research a paper and download studying apps. The best part is a tablet’s portability. They’re the ultimate gift for students who need access to all their work no matter where they are.

12. A wireless printer

Every student knows the pain of waiting in line at the library to print a paper on their way to class. A wireless printer makes it a snap to print homework at home. Many models also double as copy machines and scanners. All of those office tools will come in handy when your student graduates into a member of the workforce.

13. A remote car starter

Winter is here and for many of us that means ice and snow. It’s never fun to brave blustery winds and freezing temperatures just to de-ice your car. A remote car starter is just the thing to keep your college student warm and save them time as they hustle between work and class.

14. An Amazon Prime subscription

College students don’t have much spare time, which makes online shopping a lifesaver. Amazon Prime’s free two-day shipping makes it that much easier for students to order textbooks and anything else they might need. They can also take advantage of Prime’s free video streaming to relax after acing that test.

Make your list, check it twice

There won’t be a gift receipt in sight now that you’ve got these useful ideas for the college students in your life. They’ll be singing your praises as your thoughtful gift helps them balance their busy lives. Let us know in the comments below if you have even more gift ideas for college students!

Ashley Brooks

Ashley is a freelance writer for Collegis education who writes student-focused articles on behalf of Rasmussen University. She believes in the power of words and knowledge and enjoys using both to encourage others on their learning journeys

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