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It's hard to believe, but this year’s class is almost ready to graduate! This milestone calls for a special celebration, and what better way to mark the occasion than with a thoughtful gift?
If you're looking for ideas, we've got you covered. In this blog post, we will share the best gifts for college graduates. From practical items to unique experiences, there is something for everyone on this list!
Our Top Picks
Best for Board Exam Takers: SIHOO Ergonomic Office Chair
Best for Skin Care Fanatics: Paulas Choice Skin Perfecting Salicylic Acid Exfoliant
Best for Writers: Freewrite Travel Distraction-Free Smart Typewriter
Best for Gamers: Redragon S101 Wired Gaming Keyboard And Mouse Combo
Best for Coffee Addicts: Mr. Coffee Programmable Coffee Maker With Milk Frother
Best for Tiktokers: Kaiess Selfie Ring Light With Adjustable Tripod & Phone Holder
1. Best for Board Exam Takers: SIHOO Ergonomic Office Chair
If your giftee is getting ready for a long month's review for a licensure exam, this office chair is the perfect gift! Establishing good study habits early on and having an excellent seat can aid in the creation of an ergonomic setup.
We recommend this office chair because it is comfortable and allows you to make numerous minute adjustments for a customized fit. It can also accommodate a wide range of heights and body sizes, and we like its affordability.
2. Best for Music Lovers: Sony WHCH710N Noise Cancelling Headphones
Looking for a gift to help a music fan get through the day? Give them these high-quality, noise-canceling headphones that are comfortable to wear. These will come in handy when drowning out the screams of younger siblings or chatty colleagues at their desk.
3. Best for Globetrotters: Samsonite Winfield Hardside Luggage
A new luggage set will make new grads feel more mature and prepared as they journey to a new apartment or state. The Samsonite Winfield is ideal for both business and leisure travel. With multiple pockets, the suitcase looks fantastic.
The luggage is expandable and comes with a soft cover, which makes it easy to carry. We don't think there's a better suitcase on the market for the price!
4. Best for Book Worms: Kindle Paperwhite (8 GB)
We guarantee that any book lover will appreciate getting the Kindle Paperwhite. It is much better than phones for distraction-free reading because it doesn’t have annoying vibrations, alerts, or newsfeeds to scroll through.
Of course, regular books still exist, but you can't put 1,000 of them in your pocket. Since an e-reader is thin, light, and easy to carry, you can read your favorite literature anywhere. With the waterproof Kindle Paperwhite, you can relax in more places, like the beach or the bathtub.
There are many free or inexpensive ebooks available online. Still, if your graduate reads a lot, you might consider getting them a Kindle Unlimited subscription.
5. Best for Gym Rats: Nike Brasilia Training Medium Duffle Bag
If your college graduate likes to work out, consider giving them a gym bag. It is a specialized pouch for transporting things back and forth between a fitness center or gym.
But nowadays, a gym bag is used in many other ways, such as a carry-on suitcase when flying, overnight bags when traveling, school backpacks when hiking, or any other activity where active people may need to bring various items.
6. Best for Fashionistas: COACH Crossgrain Leather Kitt
COACH Crossgrain Leather Kitt is the perfect size to carry everything your fashionista graduate needs, and it goes with almost any outfit! When out with friends, they can carry this beautiful leather crossbody bag from the office to brunch or drinks.
This great weekend bag looks timeless in Black while the leather only gets better with age, making it a good investment.
7. Best for Digital Artists: Apple 11-inch iPad Pro
Using an iPad as a primary computer can change your grad’s life. It's smaller and lighter, allowing them to work on a spreadsheet, access smartphone apps, watch Netflix, or prop it up on a music stand to learn to play the piano.
Procreate is a powerful app that allows you to produce beautiful drawings on your iPad. It's an excellent tool for digital artists of all skill levels. A must-have accessory for Procreate is the Apple Pencil.
Not sure which one to choose? We believe the new iPad Air is the best option because it is large enough to do some work while remaining portable.
8. Best for Cinephiles: Nebula by Anker Mars II Pro
This portable projector is an excellent gift for college grads who love to watch movies. Its many features make it stand out among its competitors, including its light output, overall image quality, ease of use, and low price.
The Mars II Pro is slightly larger than other portable projectors on the market, but it is still small enough to hide completely beneath a six-pack of Coke.
9. Best for Night Owls: Alomidds Weighted Adult Blanket
If you're looking for a unique graduation gift for college or want to help a loved one sleep better at night, this weighted blanket may be just what you need!
Thanks to their soothing pressure, weighted blankets can be a godsend for insomniac and anxious grads. Research suggests that weighted blankets could help boost mood, relieve stress, and even promote better sleep by increasing melatonin levels and decreasing the stress hormone cortisol.
This product is made of microfiber and comes in three weights: 10, 15, and 20 pounds. We recommend starting with the lightest if the giftee is not used to sleeping with a weighted blanket.
10. Best for Business Travelers: Water Resistant Travel Briefcase With Organizer
This durable briefcase is one of the most popular gift options for new college graduates. It easily expands from seven to nine inches to fit everything they need, including a 17-inch laptop and tablet. It is also made of water-resistant material, in case your loved one is caught in the rain.
This messenger bag for men and women is the ideal present for a newly graduated business traveler who needs to bring home important documents while looking professional.
11. Best for Bakers: Baking With Dorie: Sweet, Salty & Simple
This book is the best graduation gift for someone who wants to start baking as a hobby or business.
When talking about chocolate chunk cookies, you probably think of Dorie Greenspan. The prolific cookbook author and baking expert have devised an ingenious new twist on the classic recipe—baking them in a muffin pan.
Her Caramel Crunch–Chocolate Chunklet Cookies have bits of chocolate and a soft, crumbly center that tastes like buttery shortbread. All the recipes in this book have Greenspan's warm encouragement, well-honed techniques, and a lot of baking tips, but we especially like her salty side.
12. Best for Job Hunters: Calvin Klein Men's Black Tie
There's an old saying that "the first impression is the only one that counts," and it couldn't be more true with job interviews.
There are various reasons why a tie is worn. It's not just about looking smarter, more business-like, or professional; it also helps you stand out among other applicants.
Looking sleek is no longer an issue with this Calvin Klein necktie. It comes in regular and long lengths, as well as a variety of colors.
13. Best for Sporty Grads: Hydro Flask Wide Mouth Straw Lid
Many college students and adults are now using Hydro Flasks to help reduce the amount of plastic waste that ends up in our oceans. A type of metal used in this product called TempShield keeps your beverage or food hot or cold for up to 6 to 24 hours.
Your gift can include Hydro Flask accessories like caps, flex boots, and body slings. Whether hiking in the mountains or doing yoga in the morning, grads can use this tough tumbler to stay hydrated on the go!
14. Best for Sentimental Grads: Upsimples Picture Frame (Set of 5)
During college years, your newly grad must have taken thousands of photographs. So why not give them this set of five frames as a reminder to display those wonderful memories?
If you want to take it a step further, you can grab photos from their Instagram and frame them yourself. Then they'll only have to worry about where to hang them.
15. Best for Car Enthusiasts: AVID POWER Buffer Polisher
Any car enthusiast, especially those constantly meeting with college friends, wants their ride to always shine and look its best. Give them this buffer polisher to help maintain their car's paint job and keep it looking new.
When done correctly, buffing or polishing a car can remove various flaws, such as minor scratches, etching, and oxidation. As a result, the vehicle’s luster is boosted and better protected.
16. Best for Jewelry Lovers: Personalized Pavé Block Name Shaker Necklace
Create a jewelry piece engraved with your college grad’s initials, birthday, or graduation date. You can also choose a message that will bring a smile to their face each time they wear it. This minimalist jewelry will become a wardrobe staple regardless of how many necklaces they already own.
Personalize your giftee’s jewelry collection with this 14-karat gold necklace with pavé letters dangling. To have someone’s name engraved, simply enter up to eight letters in the ‘Personalized Name’ box when you order through the website.
17. Best for Techies: Apple Watch Series 7 GPS + Cellular
A luxury watch is one of college graduates' most popular gift ideas. With many options, you can choose an attractive design and build quality that will last a long time.
The Apple Watch offers iPhone users an unrivaled experience, particularly given the seamless integration of watchOS and iOS. While you must be an iPhone user to take advantage of its features, it is worth the investment.
18. Best for Skin Care Fanatics: Paulas Choice Skin Perfecting Salicylic Acid Exfoliant
Because every graduate could use a little help in the skin department, this powerful exfoliant from Paula's Choice clears away dead skin cells, unclogs pores, and brightens skin tone for a radiant complexion. Plus, it's gentle enough for everyday use - perfect for busy college grads on the go!
19. Best for Online Shoppers: Amazon.com eGift Card
An Amazon.com eGift Card is always a welcome present! Your favorite college graduate can use it to buy anything from textbooks to that new wardrobe they need for their first job. Best of all, with an Amazon.com eGift Card, there are no late fees or interest charges.
Send it to anyone via email, postal mail, or other means of delivery with a predetermined amount. You can even purchase a single day's worth of gift cards for up to $10,000.
20. Best for Classical Music Fans: Audio-Technica AT-LP60XBT-RD Belt-Drive Turntable
Your college graduate can finally begin their record collection with this great starter turntable. The Audio-Technica AT-LP60XBT-RD easily connects to any Bluetooth speaker, making it ideal for setups where wires may be an issue. We love it because it is easy to set up and use. Most importantly, it sounds great!
21. Best for Working from Home: FLEXISPOT EC1 Essential Standing Desk
Many jobs onboard their employees remotely these days, meaning your college grad will most likely work from home. Give them this adjustable standing desk to ensure their success!
Height-adjustable desks help improve posture, increase blood flow, and reduce lower back pain. According to the Stand Up to Work study, 47% of people who used height-adjustable desks experienced a significant reduction in upper back, shoulder, or neck discomfort within a year.
22. Best for Moving Out Grads: CAROTE Nonstick Cookware Set
Cooking is a life skill that everyone should know and with this set, your college grad will be able to cook anything they want with ease.
The Carote cookware set includes non-stick frying pans, saucepans, stockpots, and lids. It is also non-toxic and has soft-grip bakelite handles for comfort. This gift will last them a long time and will be very useful.
23. Best for Writers: Freewrite Travel Distraction-Free Smart Typewriter
The Freewrite Traveler is a great gift if your college graduate writes professionally. It provides users with a blank text field and a keyboard, perfect for working on their next best-selling novel or typing their first cover letter.
Unlike past typewriters, you can upload drafts to services such as Google Docs or Evernote with just a single keystroke. Another significant difference is that the Freewrite Traveler does not weigh a ton—the entire device folds flat and weighs less than 2 pounds.
24. Best for Plantsman: MUDEELA Adjustable Plant Stand
Give your college grad this adjustable stand so they can elevate plants in the corner of their room or behind sofas. This is especially effective if they don't have a large indoor plant.
Bringing a specimen plant to a more elevated level will help it to make more of a statement. Anthopile graduates will undoubtedly take pleasure in this gift.
25. Best for Eco-Conscious Grads: DEVICO Travel Camping Cutlery
Give your environmentally conscious graduate a set of reusable straws, chopsticks, and spoon and fork. These utensils will help reduce waste disposables, and the included case makes the entire set portable.
This cutlery set was designed with the college graduate in mind. It is perfect for those who are always on the go and need a reliable yet affordable way to eat their meals. We especially like the quality of this product, which is pleasantly hefty and comes in various cool colors.
26. Best for Bikers: Dynacraft Magna Front Shock Mountain Bike
This bike is perfect for people who want to stay active and healthy after college. It's also great for grads to save money on transportation costs.
Additionally, bicycling to work is associated with a significantly lower risk of cardiovascular diseases than driving or walking. The Magna Front Shock Mountain Bike is a thoughtful gift that any college graduate would appreciate!
27. Best for Early Risers: Echo Dot Smart Speaker With Clock And Alexa
Everyone understands how difficult it is to get out of bed and go to work. Make your grad's morning routine easier with a smart speaker.
Unlike traditional alarm clocks, this Echo Dot Smart Speaker allows you to stream songs from Amazon Music, Apple Music, Spotify, SiriusXM, and other services. It also enables you to listen to audiobooks and podcasts. Plus, Alexa is ready to answer questions, set alarms, and so much more!
28. Best for Crypto Experts: Keystone Indestructible Steel Crypto Seed Backup
This device is a fantastic find for college graduates interested in crypto. Cold storage is a method of storing cryptocurrency tokens offline to prevent hackers from gaining access to digital assets.
The steel construction is durable and ensures that the graduates' private keys will be safe. They can use this backup if they lose their primary seed phrase, helping them recover their funds quickly and easily.
29. Best for Homesick Grads: Homesick Premium Scented Candle
Homesick candles bring nostalgic scents of home to grads away at college. Each candle is made with natural, eco-friendly wax that smells like lemon, grapefruit, and jasmine. It also has a lead-free wick for a cozy crackle sound and comes in a beautiful glass jar.
We think it’s the perfect way to show your college graduate how much you care. This scented candle is a beautiful and thoughtful gift that will fill their new home with the fragrances of their favorite memories.
30. Best for Office Employees: Verdusa Women's Elegant Long Sleeve Satin Blouse
This blouse will be a welcome addition to any college graduate's wardrobe because it's both practical and stylish. The long sleeves and satin fabric make it ideal for special occasions, while the relaxed fit means it can be worn for work or play. With so many colors to choose from, there's sure to be one that's perfect for your graduate.
What's more, the Verdusa Women's Elegant Long Sleeve Satin Blouse is affordable, making it a great gift for anyone on a budget. So if you're looking for a thoughtful and affordable present, this blouse is a perfect choice.
31. Best for Frugal Grads: FurArt Credit Card Wallet
The average college graduate has over $30,000 in student loan debt. FurArt Credit Card Wallet is an excellent gift that can help alleviate some of that burden.
The wallet has a built-in credit card holder and RFID blocking technology to keep your grad's information safe. It also has a money clip, so they can keep their cash handy. You can also use it to store business cards and gift cards.
We love that it comes in various colors and is small enough to slip into your pockets.
32. Best Planner: Clever Fox Planner PRO Weekly & Monthly Life Planner
A planner allows your favorite college graduate to schedule their appointments, errands, and tasks ahead of time. The Clever Fox Planner will assist them in developing a vision for their life, defining and breaking down short and long-term goals, and incorporating them into their monthly, weekly, or daily agendas.
This gift idea will undoubtedly reduce procrastination and make big dreams a reality. It can also help your newly grad become more disciplined, motivated, and effective adults.
33. Best for Gamers: Redragon S101 Wired Gaming Keyboard And Mouse Combo
A gaming keyboard that completes one's PC setup will surely bring joy to any college grad! There are many advantages to using a mechanical keyboard, including faster response times, greater durability, N-key rollover, and a wide range of customization options.
The Redragon S101 is a great gift that's both affordable and high-quality. Its design and performance make it one of the best keyboards for everyday use.
34. Best Financial Book: I Will Teach You To Be Rich
Personal finance books don't get much better than this one. Designed for people in their early 20s, this is a logical, step-by-step, and practical guide to financial success. Author Ramit Sethi recommends "automatically enabling yourself to save, invest, and spend - enjoying it, and not feeling guilty.
Books on personal finance can help college graduates to make better monetary decisions. The book teaches readers the fundamentals of personal finance, such as why paying yourself first is a good idea or how to manage and pay off debt.
35. Best for Coffee Addicts: Mr. Coffee Programmable Coffee Maker With Milk Frother
Your graduate will need all the coffee to help them power through their new job (or job search). Mr. Coffee makes it easy to get a great cup of joe each morning, and the milk frother means they can enjoy a latte without leaving home.
Plus, the programmable feature means they can set up this machine before bed and wake up to fresh coffee in the morning. It's the perfect gift for any graduate who loves coffee!
36. Best for Aspiring Videographers: DJI Mini SE Camera Drone With 3-Axis Gimbal
The DJI Mini SE Camera Drone is a great gift for college graduates who want to document their life post-graduation. This marvelously compact device offers the same capabilities as its predecessor at a much lower price.
This drone allows for stable and smooth video recording, making it perfect for capturing memories. The three-axis gimbal also ensures that videos are clear and shake-free. College graduates will love being able to look back on their memories with this thoughtful gift.
So, if you know someone that enjoys making videos or aspires to be a YouTuber, we highly recommend giving them this drone as a present!
37. Best for Tiktokers: Kaiess Selfie Ring Light With Tripod & Phone Holder
Your graduate will take lots of pictures to document this special time in their life. This ring light will help them take the best selfies to remember this momentous occasion.
And if they want to become an influencer or content creator in the future, this will surely come in handy when recording videos. It has three light settings to help them get the perfect lighting, and its tripod and phone holder make it easy to use.
38. Best for Sneakerheads: Jason Markk Shoe Cleaning Essentials
Your favorite college grad will walk around a lot and want to look their best. The Jason Markk Shoe Cleaning Kit has everything they need to keep their shoes looking sharp, including a brush and a cleaning solution.
And if your graduate is headed off to a new job, they'll need to look good there too! A gift like this will help them make a great first impression.
39. Best for Netflix Fans: Netflix Gift Cards
If you know someone graduating from college this year, a Netflix Gift Card is one of the best ways to show your support. Give it to them as a graduation present or to help them relax after exams; it is a practical gift that any college grad would appreciate.
Additionally, Netflix offers a wide range of content that people of all ages can enjoy. Whether your graduate is looking for a new show to binge-watch or a movie to watch with friends, Netflix has something for everyone.
40. Best Gift If You Run Out of Ideas: Urban Stems Boquet
There's something about receiving flowers that just makes people happy. And what could be a more thoughtful gift for a college graduate than something guaranteed to bring them joy?
Urban Stems is a beautiful, modern way to show your graduate how proud you are of their accomplishment. The company offers many bouquet options so you can find the perfect one for your loved one. They also have a subscription service, so they can continue to enjoy fresh flowers after graduation.
So, if you are looking for a unique and clever gift for the recent college graduate in your life that will help them start their new adventure off on the right foot, check out some of our top recommendations. From practical items they will use daily to fun experiences that will last a lifetime, we have something for everyone on this list.
And don’t forget – graduation is also the perfect time to give a little encouragement and well wishes for the future. We hope these gifts will help your loved ones soar to great heights in their career and personal life!
Best Gifts for College Grads Buying Guide
If you're close to someone who will graduate, you should consider their tastes and preferences when deciding what kind of gift to buy.
A nice watch might make a good present if the graduate is into fashion. A new laptop or tablet might be better if they are into the latest tech.
When choosing a graduation gift for a college graduate, you should think about what they will need in the future, especially in an office setting.
Since they will be entering the workforce, giving them something useful in their profession is ideal, like a set of stylish pens or notebooks.
Another important factor to consider when purchasing graduation gifts is the item's quality. The gift should be something that will stand the test of time in terms of physical durability and emotional significance.
You should also assess your budget and how much you're willing to spend on the gift. If you are low on budget, convince multiple people to share the cost.
Remember only to spend money within your means. Our list of gift ideas above is full of small to big presents anyone would love to receive.
Graduation Gifts for College FAQ
1. Is it customary to give a gift for college graduation?
The etiquette surrounding graduations is simple: If you wish to send a gift, then do so. But if you do not wish to send a gift, don't feel obligated. They will appreciate a card or note expressing congratulations either way.
2. How much money do you give your college graduate as a gift?
Most people agree that $50 is a good amount to give. However, when the graduating student is someone you know well or have a close relationship with, you can give up to $500.
3. Should you give cash or a check for a graduation gift?
Graduation is a momentous occasion, and money can help in many ways. Some graduates may not yet have a bank account, but hopefully, they will soon!
Give cash instead of a check in this situation. Checks are better suited for sending large sums or for delivering by mail.
4. Do parents give college graduation gifts?
When it comes to giving a college graduation gift, there are no hard and fast rules. Many parents think their children will appreciate tangible gifts like money, cars, or vacations. However, these things may not be the best gifts for graduating students.
The most suitable gifts for college grads are those they can use throughout their lives—ones that don't lose value with time.
5. What should my graduation message be?
“Congratulations on your graduation! I hope your knowledge will serve you well as you embark on this new journey. Pursuing a dream requires passion and hard work, so don't forget to celebrate along the way! The tassel was well worth it!”
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