College Care Package Ideas

| October 7, 2021 | 26 Comments

Girl in bedroomIf you have a college student in your family, you may have enjoyed having her around for the past several weeks. Chances are that she either went back to school within the past few days, or else she’s going back this or next week, and while she might be excited, she’s also likely to feel a pang of letdown. Not only will she miss her family, but she’ll need to get “back to the grind” and will be once again living on cafeteria food and cramming for exams.

Just as she needed a bit of extra love and attention in September when she left for college, she might need a pick-me-up over the next few weeks. Here are some great ideas for care packages to send to your college student to let her know that you are thinking about her:

  • Remember the weather. Banish winter blues by sending along some toe socks, knitted mittens or a crocheted hat. Your student might also like some moisturizer for skin made dry from artificial heating in the dorms or some lip balm for chapped lips. Even packets of hot chocolate mix, instant coffee (or K-cups if she has a Keurig!) or teabags would make a good addition to your care package and will help her warm up on a cold winter day.
  • Food is always appreciated. You know her favorites, so send them along! Whether it’s homemade cookies, rice krispee treats or a particular type of candy, putting some of the things she likes in her care package will tell her that you know her well. Consider what types of cooking implements she has available to her; if she doesn’t have a microwave in her dorm, for example, don’t send microwavable popcorn.
  • Gift certificates can lift her spirits when money is low. Find out what types of establishments are nearby, and send along a gift certificate! If your student is counting change to make it to the end of the month, she’s probably not able to afford dinner out at a nicer restaurant; even going bowling or for coffee might be out of reach sometimes. Call local restaurants and entertainment facilities to find out how you can buy a gift certificate over the phone or via the web if you can’t buy one where you currently are.
  • A cold and flu survival kit might be especially timely. Since it’s still cold and flu season, chances are that your student will get sick one more time before spring has sprung. If she calls sniffling, sneezing or coughing, send a box of vitamin C, cough drops or sore throat lozenges, a few cans of chicken soup, her favorite tea, tissues, honey, and perhaps a DVD you think she’d like.
  • Something random and whimsical can brighten a dreary day. How about something like a bright and colorful pillowcase, a new pair of slippers, drawings from all of the younger siblings and cousins, or some pretty stationery, pens and stamps? If you see something you think she might like at a discount store, pick it up and send it for no reason at all!

What were some of your favorite care packages that you received while in college? If you have a college student, what are his or her favorite items to get in the mail?

Comments (26)

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  1. RonLeyba says:

    Foods will always be the greatest choice. Great tips you got here though.

  2. Julie Wood says:

    Food items are always a great idea when sending a son or daughter back to college. Also I am sure they will need cold medicine or a flu kit because there are so many germs going around!

  3. denise smith says:

    food is a good idea that is probally the best i agree with you thank you for the tips

  4. Sunnymay says:

    Food is good and so is a care package for cold/flu season with green tea, chicken noodle soup and cough drops. My mom used to send me a pre-stamped postcard to check off how I was doing. It’s kinda funny, but knowing someone cares about you besides on the phone is a big lift for the day.

  5. Kimberly R. says:

    really sweet ideas, wish i had gotten one of these.

  6. Chrystal D says:

    There are some good tips in this post! Love the one about the cold & flu kit too!

  7. Marti Parks says:

    These are great ideas, I never would have thought of the cold and flu survival kit.

  8. JJ Caraway says:

    When my son was in college i would always go bring him a care package full of things I knew he wouldn’t buy for himself along with gift cards to restaurants and groceries stores and of course his favorite quick meal ramen noodles, LOL. When he came home for a visit I would send one back with him also and now he is out of college and working so he does for momma.

  9. Becky Davis says:

    My son likes getting food or candy in his box. Gift =cards are appreciated too.

  10. Dianna Thomas says:

    Wow –never thought about the food thing–dont have one yet in school but help for tips for nephew

  11. tammy saylor says:

    Thanks for the great ideas.

  12. jenifer meagher says:

    With a son in college these are great tips. Thank you.

  13. Jeanine says:

    Lots of these ideas would work for a Soldier as well!

  14. Bobbie Gilliam says:

    I made a great package for when my oldest son went to college it had a little bit of everything in it and items he did not even know he would need, but he used all of it.

  15. Bidisha Banerjee says:

    Amazing package idea. Will help to pack all my gifts.

  16. Jo-Ann Brightman says:

    I know that I always appreciated foosd items. Thanks for the tips.

  17. Angie says:

    I didn’t get care packages when I was in college. Would have been nice!

  18. Crystal Warren says:

    One of the presents I got my stepdaughter for Christmas was a nice smoothie maker and last week I sent a fruit basket with a note it was for making her smoothies. Great list and if kids were like I was FOOD is most important..I lived on Ramen Noodles for years in college…I don’t want my kids doing that!

  19. Catherine McKeever says:

    My daughter is at the Air Force Academy and these are great ideas to send care packages to her. Thanks for the great ideas!

  20. Mitzi Fisher says:

    I love the ideas!!!! The cold and Flu kit is awesome idea 🙂

  21. Raymond says:

    I need this tips! 🙁 Thanks!

  22. tami s says:

    This is a great idea for graduation gifts for those that are going away to school. I have a junior in high school that I hope will stay local for the first two years but if not, I’m sure I will be packing many care packages.

  23. Kristina says:

    My sister always LOVED snacks, especially japanese snacks (since we are japanese). While in college she didnt care much about clothes, and makeup hahah. just food!

  24. Huguette English says:

    Love these. The university my daughter goes to also have exam care packages.

  25. ANN*H says:

    Great ideas for college students. Depending what state they are in some things they may need might be abit different as far as what they might need for the weather. Peanut butter and jelly are always good to have too

  26. Jennifer Mae Hiles says:

    My mom would occasionally send me gift packs and that was the best ever! Nothing better than getting a little taste of home and some goodies. The cold and flu survival kit is a great idea. Especially being around so many people all the time and not having your mommy there to care for you!

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