By now, most of the college freshmen have been moved into their dorms. Moms and Dads are at home adjusting to the absence of their offspring, and students are settling into life with their new roommates. It’s the perfect time to send a little care package to let them know they’re missed and loved.
I have a little “formula” I like to use any time I would send our son a care package from home. Below is the formula I like to use. Feel free to click on any of the pictures or highlighted words to find these exact things on Amazon! (See more info below about shipping!)
I like to put one thing from each of the following categories every time I send a box (or have it shipped directly) to our college student.
- Something to have fun with!
- Something to eat!
- Something they might need to use!
Something to have fun with!
This category doesn’t have to be complicated. I like to send card games like Uno, Cards Against Humanity, or Exploding Kittens. A very popular game with college students is Catan. Other fun things that are a big hit are a simple Frisbee or something like Spike Ball. These fun things will also pull double duty when college students are trying to meet new people in their dorms or common areas. Game nights are also friendly on a college student’s budget.
If games aren’t your college student’s thing, try sending something fun for their room like a little succulent plant, fun lights, or a new journal.
Tip: Just remember, whatever you send from this category will have to be moved out at the end of the year. Don’t go overboard with big items!
Something to eat!
Even with the best meal plan or campus cafeteria, college students are going to want something to munch on in their dorm rooms. Our son’s favorite snacks to receive were these chips and dip kits, popcorners chips, nuts, small packs of candy, Pringles, and gum.
Other ideas for this category could be tea bags, hot chocolate, microwave popcorn, fruit snacks, oatmeal cups, etc.
Something they might need to use!
It may feel like you just dropped them off at college with everything but the kitchen sink, but over the next few months they’ll start to need a few things. Some things we ended up sending were: Febreze plug ins (those rooms start to stink), Downy wrinkle releaser (the small bottles are easier to send), room spray, Tide laundry pods, new toothbrushes, deodorant, toiletries, and essential oils to diffuse. We also ended up sending a small hand held vacuum that they could use for their car or room.
Shipping your care packages:
Shipping care packages can get really expensive. I recommend doing one of two things: either ship directly from Amazon and don’t pay any shipping at all, or use the flat-rate boxes from the post office.
Most colleges offer free mailboxes to students that live on campus. However, I have found that most colleges will also require that students come in person to set up their box and receive a key. I have also known other colleges that receive packages in their mail center and email students when they have something to pick up. (If your student lives off-campus, just use their regular mailing address.)
The cheapest and easiest thing to do is to ship directly from Amazon. This might mean that your purchases don’t all arrive in the same box or on the same day. Just give your student a heads up that you sent a care package and XX number of packages are coming.
If you are trying to come up with more ideas than the ones above, try picking a care package theme. Holidays (Halloween, Valentines) are easy to find things for. If you want to give them a “game night” send a text that you’re sending everything they need to have a game night with friends, and then send a few card games, chips and popcorn, candy, and soda.
This can be a hard time for students and parents. Sending a care package is a great way to reach out to them when you may be feeling disconnected. I hope these ideas help you! Let me know in the comments if you have more ideas to share with everyone.