Great Gifts for College Kids & Young Adults

  • 01 of 18

    Nine Cool Stocking Stuffers for Teens & College Kids

    From Chocolate-Bacon Bars to Einstein Magnets. Courtesy Unemployed Philosophers Guild

    Holiday, Birthday and Graduation Gift Guides for Teens & Young Adults

    Got a sci-fi fan, movie buff, new college student or 20-something on your gift giving list? This collection of gift ideas should help. Browse through the galleries below for gift ideas based on age, occasion and special interest - yes, even zombies, but also book lovers and Blue-Ray fans.

    They may be nearly grown, but college kids still love holiday stockings. Here's a sneak peek at our guide to Nine Great New Stocking...MORE Stuffers for Teens.

    Wondering what to tuck in that stocking? How about a Dress-Your-Own-Einstein magnet set for the dorm fridge door? The famous physicist probably had 100 lab coats, but now he can dress down for casual Friday, dress up for the opera or don an outfit that would make Evel Knievel feel right at home.

    For more stocking stuffer ideas - including chocolate-bacon bars, philosopher finger puppets and a new twist on the sticky notes theme - check out our guide to Great Stocking Stuffers for Teens, as well as tips on Packing the Perfect Care Package.

    Continue to 2 of 18 below.
  • 02 of 18

    Great Gifts Under $50 for College Kids & 20-Somethings

    Beanies, Tailgate Picnic Baskets, DIY Macchiatos and More Beanie. UCSB

    Beanies top our list of "10 Great Gift Ideas Under $50 for Teens & College Kids".

    Looking for a not-too-expensive gift for your favorite teen or college kid? Pick up a soft knitted beanie or scarf ($13 and up) with the college logo next time you visit campus, or opt for one of these other gift ideas, including a DIY macchiato set, tailgate essentials and more.

    Continue to 3 of 18 below.
  • 03 of 18

    Gift Ideas for Your Son or Daughter's Sweetheart

    More Than 15 Great Picks Anthony Bourdain's clever graphic novel - "Get Jiro!" (Vertigo Comics, 2012) is set in a post-apocalyptic Los Angeles, ruled by warlord chefs riled up over the appearance of an unusual sushi chef. Courtesy Vertigo

    It's tough enough finding the perfect gift for your own teen or 20something, but i's even more challenging when the gift is for their sweetheart. Here are more than 15 gift ideas that will delight that special boyfriend or girlfriend - and win points with your own kid too.

    Shopping for your college kid or 20something's beau can be like traipsing across a gift minefield. Who knew gifts had subtexts? Well, we all knew that, actually. But here are 15+ ideas for wonderful gifts,...MORE including backgammon boards, Blue Bottle coffee, a little touch of cashmere and a hilariously quirky book about a katana-wielding sushi chef. Pair the latter with a gift certificate to the couple's favorite sushi place and you'll delight them both.

    Continue to 4 of 18 below.
  • 04 of 18

    Gifts for Science Buffs and Sci-Fan Fans

    9 Fabulous Gift Ideas for Your Favorite Geek This steampunk-inspired poster, designed by Florida graphic artist Megan Lee Welch, gives physicist Niels Bohr the rock star treatment. Courtesy of Megan Lee Welch

    Got a lovable geek in your life? This octet of great gift ideas is perfect for any science buff, sci-fi fan or Dr. Who devotee.

    Between smart phones, iPads and the BBC's cult fave, "Dr. Who," the last decade has made geekdom a sweet thing indeed. So here's a slew of great gift ideas for the sci-fi fan or math whiz on your gift list, including rock star scientist posters, Tardis memorabilia, terrific novels - "Red Shirts," anyone? - and geeky gadgets.

    Continue to 5 of 18 below.
  • 05 of 18

    Great Gifts: Books for College Kids & 20-Somethings

    Aliens, Supermodels, Paparazzi and More. Bloomsbury

    College kids and 20somethings spend so much time reading textbooks, it takes a special tome to tempt them to spend leisure time reading too - a book like these.

    There's nothing like a few alien invasions, post-apocalyptic cities and a supermodel or two two to provide a little escapist fare - and a perfect gift for your favorite college kid or 20-something. Take "The Bone Season," for example, the hot first book by recent Oxford grad Samantha Shannon, who signed a seven-book deal with...MORE Bloomsbury, the Harry Potter publisher. It's a tale of clairvoyants on the run in futuristic London, and the netherworld battle that's about to ensue.

    For more literary gift ideas - including tales of epic battles, betrayals and love - check out this list of great books for the college and older set. You may find some gift ideas for yourself too.

    Continue to 6 of 18 below.
  • 06 of 18

    Great Gifts for College Kids & Young Adults ($50-$500)

    Cooking Lessons, Bluetooth & More. Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images

    Unleash your teen's inner Top Chef. Dabble in Louisiana's vampire haven. And check out the other cool stuff in this "Great Gifts for Young Adults" list.

    Whether it's a Pad Thai course or a Tikka Masala primer, there’s a cool cooking class out there for everyone, from kitchen newbie to culinary master. Get a cooking class gift certificate for two for your college kid or 20something and he can bring a friend. Or you.

    For more gift ideas in the $50-and-up price range - from a DVD...MORE set of HBO's "True Blood" series to a portable GPS - check out this Great Gift Ideas for College Kids & 20-Somethings list.
    Continue to 7 of 18 below.
  • 07 of 18

    Gifts for Harry Potter Fans

    6 Great Gifts for the Hogwarts Crowd. Courtesy of Melissa Anelli

    Every Hogwarts fan has J.K. Rowling's books, but here are 7 other Gift Ideas for Harry Potter Fans, from collegiate Quidditch brooms to theme park tickets.

    Forget "Hogarts, a History." Fans will enjoy reading about Harry Potter's internet-fueled rise to stardom in "Harry, a History," by Leaky Cauldron web mistress Melissa Anelli. Been there, read that? Then check out the other ideas on this guide to Gifts for Harry Potter Fans.

    Continue to 8 of 18 below.
  • 08 of 18

    Gifts for the True Blood and Twilight Crowds

    Shirts, Drinks, Books & More. Photo by Jackie Burrell

    Whether your favorite college kid or 20-something favors the world of Forks or Bon Temps, there's a great idea for him or her on this list of Great Gifts for Vamp Fans.

    Between the popular HBO's vamp series and its spin-offs and the Stephenie Meyer universe, this is a good time to love fictional vampires. Meyer's latest vampire book just landed, season three of "True Blood" is out, and all you really need is a six-pack of Type O to celebrate. Add in all the other cool items on...MORE the Gift Guide for Vampire Fans list - Merlotte's shirts, anyone? - and it's enough to make any vamp fan shiver with delight.

    Continue to 9 of 18 below.
  • 09 of 18

    Great Blu-Rays for College Kids & 20Somethings

    From the Evil Witch to Mr. Spock, Tyrion Lannister and Mindy Lahiri, MD. Courtesy Universal Studios

    Got a movie or comedy fan? Here's a sneak peek at our guide to Blu-Rays and DVD Gifts for Teens & College Kids.

    A rom-com loving ob-gyn with a hilariously awkward personal life? That could only be "The Mindy Project," Mindy Kaling's uber-popular new TV show. Season one, just out on Blu-Ray, makes a perfect gift for any college kid or 20something. So for that matter, does everything else on this list of great Blu-Rays for college kids & 20somethings, which ranges from...MORE zombie flicks to sexy vampire sagas, grown-up fairy tale and the adventures of a certain pair of fuzzy college-going monsters.

    Continue to 10 of 18 below.
  • 10 of 18

    Great Board Games

    board game
    10 Great Games for Teens, College Kids & 20-Somethings Quelf board game. Courtesy Imagination Entertainment

    From Apples to Apples to Quelf, Loaded Questions and Tiki Topple, these great board games are guaranteed to please teens and wow the dorm crowd.

    Our grandparents may have loved Parcheesi, but today's teens and young adults prefer the unpredictable zaniness of games like Apples to Apples or Quelf. Check out the rest of the picks on our 10 Great Board Games list.

    Continue to 11 of 18 below.
  • 11 of 18

    Gifts for Zombie Fans

    From World War Z to Zombieland, Something for Every Undead Fan. Courtesy Paramount

    Got a zombie fan? Here's a sneak peek at our guide to Gifts for Fans of the, er, Living-Challenged.

    Zombie devotees loved the tongue-in cheek book penned by Saturday Night Live writer - and Mel Brooks' son - Max Brooks. Now his tale of "World War Z" has been adapted for the silver screen. The book told the "true" story of the great zombie apocalypse in a series of first-person accounts by a Chinese doctor, smugglers, spies and soldiers battling the great undead threat. The...MORE movie stars Brad Pitt as a United Nations official chasing the plague around the world. And these zombies don't shamble. They run. Fast.

    For more zombie gift ideas - including Simon Pegg's cult classic (best watched while eating a British Cornetto ice cream treat), an undead board game and zombie army figurines - check out our guide to Gifts for Zombie Fans.

    Continue to 12 of 18 below.
  • 12 of 18

    11 Great College Graduation Gifts

    Great gifts to go with that new college diploma. Jane Cleary, Stock.Xchng Photos

    College graduations are huge achievements. Here's a sneak peek at our guide to 11 Great College Graduation Gifts to help mark the day.

    Between the dorm gear and iTunes gift cards, high school graduation gifts are relatively easy. But what do you get a new, 21st century, college grad? Many new grads do the backpacking/hostel thing across Asia or visit friends they met during study abroad in Europe. If your grad has travel plans, a gift certificate to a travel accessories or backpacking store...MORE can be put toward luggage or a backpack for travel, or a briefcase for work. And guide books to the countries he plans to visit - or a Kindle or Sony Digital Reader, which can carry those guidebooks as well novels and other reading material - make an exciting, thoughtful gift. For more college graduation gift ideas - including a DIY graduation video, first apartment gifts and art possibilities - check out our guide to Great College Graduation Gifts.

    Continue to 13 of 18 below.
  • 13 of 18

    Great High School Graduation Gifts

    From Memory Boards to Campus Gear. Courtesy Sourcebooks

    High school graduation is a special time. Here's a sneak peek at our guide to Great High School Graduation Gifts.

    Syndicated columnist Harlan Cohen's practical, irreverent take on college life has entertained and helped parents and kids across the country. Now, you can get his wit and wisdom in book form, The Naked Roommate... And 107 Other Issues You Might Run Into in College. It includes tips on dealing with unclothed dorm buddies, but also advice on college dating, cash, classes and...MORE time management. Pick up this or another fun, college-advice book for the new grad, and add a gift card or check.

    For more high school graduation gift ideas - including dorm gear, campus togs and Randy Pausch's inspirational last lecture - check out our guide to 8 Great High School Graduation Gifts.

    Continue to 14 of 18 below.
  • 14 of 18

    21st Birthday Gifts

    Champagne, Espresso & More. Photo courtesy of Craig Toron, Stock.Xchng Photos

    Landmark birthday coming up? Here's a sneak peek at our 21st birthday gift list:

    Traditionally, 21st birthdays are saluted with a bottle of equally old wine. But most young adults have not yet developed the palate for Port, Sauternes and the kinds of high end red wines that age well over two decades. But a bottle of fine champagne – a Veuve Cliquot, for example, or Perrier-Jouet – is a very special, always-appropriate gift. For 21st birthdays, some people get a kick out of wrapping the bottle...MORE in a white linen napkin or cloth diaper, and fastening it with a large diaper pin. (Using disposable Pampers doesn’t have quite the same aesthetic effect, but it gets a laugh too.) Cost: $45-$200.

    For more 21st birthday ideas, check out our guide to 21st birthday parties and our 21st Birthday Gift Ideas list.

    Continue to 15 of 18 below.
  • 15 of 18

    Handmade Gifts for College Kids

    Easy Dorm Crafts & Gift Ideas for Teens & 20somethings. Photo by Jackie Burrell

    Cozy fleece blankets, photo thumbtacks and other DIY dorm crafts make great gifts for teens and college kids.

    A DIY fleece blanket cozies up a dorm room instantly. Check out the other ideas on this Dorm Crafts list too.

    Continue to 16 of 18 below.
  • 16 of 18

    Gifts for Grad Students

    Gift ideas to please med students, legal eagles-to-be and future Ph.Ds. Courtesy Roll and Tumble Press

    Whether you've got a med student, a lawyer-to-be or a future English professor, these gift ideas are tailor made for the grad student in your life.

    This letterpress "You are Here" poster makes a charming addition to any med student's apartment walls, but there are ideas for every other discipline too, from legal board games to laptop sleeves, coffee presses and more.

    Continue to 17 of 18 below.
  • 17 of 18

    Clever Ways to Give Cash

    The ultimate one-size-fits-all gift gets a makeover. Marc Garrido i Puig/Stock.Xchng Photos

    Cash is always a popular gift for students. You can always stuff a few $20s in an envelope, but here are a few, more creative ways to present money.

    It's tacky to just hand someone a wad of money, but make a cash gift too clever and it risks getting lost in the wrapping. Instead, try painting your own piggy bank - a "Wall Street Bound" pig in a suit and tie for your new MBA student, a curly wigged judge for your legal eagle or a paint-spattered porker for a budding artist. Or try one...MORE of these other ideas on for size.

    Continue to 18 of 18 below.
  • 18 of 18

    Great Books for College Kids & 20somethings

    The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
    Novels, Non-fiction & Advice Books for Young Adults. Courtesy Broadway

    Textbooks are all well and good, but if you're looking for a great read for your college kid or 20something ...

    Intoxicating tales, epic journeys, vampires, zombies and real-life medical mysteries - there are books to suit every teen or 20something taste. And if you're looking for roommate advice, there are books for that too. Here's just a sampling:

    • Great reads: Dragons, thrones, comic memoirs and an Indiana Jones-ish trek into the Amazon? There's something for everyone on this...MORE Great Books for Teens & 20-Somethings gift list. And parents will probably end up putting some on their wish lists too!
    • Summer college reading lists: From a teenager's epic illegal journey to the poor tobacco farm worker whose cells - taken without permission - led to a cure for polio, the most popular books on college summer reading lists are great reads too. We'll skip the schools that suggested "The Communist Manifesto" (ahem), and jump instead to "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks," "Enrique's Journey" and other fantastic book list suggestions.
    • College advice books: Naked roommates, apps essay tips and freshman year survival - you'll find those suggestions in this passel of great college advice books.
    • Zombies, vampires and wizards: Looking for book - and video and board game - gift suggestions for that zombie-lover? A few non-Twilight vampire ideas? Or something to read in a post-Harry Potter world? (Besides books 1-7 again, I mean.)