Best in Class

27 Great Gift Ideas for the College Grad in Your Life


May 19, 2020 Buying Guides By
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Need the perfect gift for the college grad? We asked our team of gear obsessives to recommend their go-to products for grads planning a big trip, entering the workforce or moving into a new home. Here’s their list, starting at $15.

Duracell Emergency LED Road Flare

Breakdowns happen. Make sure your grad stays safe when they do with these LED road flares, which are far safer and more versatile than the real thing; these can clamp onto magnetic surfaces, work in all weather and run for 50 hours.

Barton Jetson NATO Style Watch Strap

Graduation is a festive occasion and a fun NATO strap will last years to come and be a personal reminder of this life achievement. Barton offers a ton of variations so it’s easy to match the personality and style of your graduate.

Trade Coffee Subscription

The largest collection of legitimately great coffee roasters on the internet delivered wherever, and on your own schedule. There isn’t a better coffee subscription available.

Yeti Custom Collegiate Drinkware

Let them show their school pride as an alumni every morning with a cup of coffee in some of the sturdiest travel mugs around.

Custom Leatherman Multi-Tool

Everyone can use a Leatherman, especially outside the confines of dorm life. A customized one is an elevated way to say, “Congrats.”

Feedback Sports Rakk Integrated Bicycle Stand

Transitioning from college means getting better at space management. This reliable stand eschews clumsily leaning bikes against a wall. The spring-loaded arm holds the front or rear wheel safely and securely, and it can handle all kinds of tires, from thin aeros to beefy MTBs.

Meguiar’s Ultimate Results Car Care Bundle

Now that your kid is on their own, they need to start taking care of their own car. And nothing says “I care about my ride” more than keeping it clean.

Mophie Powerstation Plus (W/ Lightning Connector)

A portable powerbank that includes the charging cord is one of the greatest inventions in the smartphone age, in my opinion. Get this for them (if they own an iPhone) and they’ll use it everyday.

Tojiro DP Gyutuo

This budget-friendly Japanese chef’s knife gets high marks for durability, performance and value, but it’s also the gateway into the world of Japanese knives.

Warby Parker Downing Sunglasses

A pair of quality sunglasses is a an easy way to turn up an outfit an extra notch. Plus, if your college grad isn’t really a hat person, a pair of shades will keep them eyes safe Their future is pretty bright, after all.

Grovemade Leather Desk Pad

Stepping into the professional world will require them having a professional-looking desk. Grovemade’s Leather Desk Pad will elevate any workspace to professional standards.

Hodinkee Canvas Watch Roll for Six Watches

Graduating from college calls for a more elegant solution to storing watches than a tube sock, such as this this rugged canvas watch roll from Hodinkee. Available in three colors, it’ll protect six watches up to 46mm in diameter, and look damn good doing it, too.

Drop Ibara Jeans

For a fresh college grad, why not a fresh pair of selvedge denim jeans for them to break in themselves? These made-in-Japan jeans from Drop have all the bells and whistles denimheads crave and then some, all at a price that’ll provoke double takes (in a good way).

Waterford Diamond Line Old Fashioned Glasses

Waterford is a “you made it” brand if there ever was one. Its famed crystal glass lines the best old school whiskey bars in the world. Whoever gifts a pair of its Old Fashioned glasses will have a drinking partner for life.

Brooks Brothers Oxford Shirt

Is there anything more classic than a Brooks Brothers Oxford cloth button-down shirt? It’s made stateside with every hallmark of a quality shirt: single needle stitching, mother-of-pearl buttons and a perfectly rakish collar roll. For interviews, first dates or just feeling good, this American icon can handle it all.

GiantMouse Ace Iona

A Swiss Army Knife is a great coming-of-age boyhood gift, but completing college calls for something more refined. The Iona’s sleek design understates its quality, which, thanks to the premium M390 steel that makes up its blade, will serve through many more pivotal moments.

Apple Watch Series 3

If the person you’re shopping for owns an iPhone and just wants a simple-to-use smartwatch to track their workouts and keep them connected, get them the Series 3. It’s a bargain.

Kammok Bobcat Trail Quilt

Like a sleeping bag, Kammok designed its trail quilt for the outdoors with cozy, lightweight insulation, but unlike a mummy-style sack, it’s versatile enough to fit in inside too. So whether the grad you know is moving into a fresh new apartment or a tent in the woods, the Bobcat makes a fitting gift.

Nemo Equipment Roamer Sleeping Pad

Camping implies a certain level of roughing it, but there’s no reason the sleeping part has to be. This relatively luxurious open cell foam, self-inflating mattress ensures sweet dreams. It can even double as a makeshift bed when a friend visits the new grad’s (cramped) new apartment.

Wolf Heritage Single Watch Winder

A watch winder is both a way to keep an automatic watch wound and ready for wearing, and a handsome storage solution for a beautiful timepiece. A new grad will surely appreciate this Wolf winder’s pro touches, such as directional settings and optional battery or power adaptor operation.

All-Clad 3-Quart Saute Pan

All-Clad’s superlative stainless steel cookware is hardwearing, high-performing and coveted around the world. It’s also pricey, which is why the 3-quart saute pan is the pan to get. It is the cook-everything pan — big enough to makes small stews and saucy meals, and small enough to toss veggies and stir fry.

Rev’It Marshal Boots

Good riding boots are important for motorcyclists, but adults need ones that look respectable, too. The Marshals are equally at-home on the bike as in the office.

Dims. x Gear Patrol Utility Cart

This versatile cart can be a lifetime fixture in all their grown-up homes to come.

Filson Original Briefcase

Tough as nails and better with use, that’s the kind of briefcase you want to carry indefinitely. Filson’s Original Briefcase hits both of those notes and has just the right amount of carry capacity for daily use.

Sony WH-1000XM3

You can’t really go wrong with the Sony WH-1000XM3. In terms of sound quality, noise-canceling abilities and overall features, they’re the total package.

Seiko Presage SRPB77

Marking a life achievement with a watch is a tradition. Seiko’s popular collection of Cocktail Time automatic watches look the part for new graduates entering the workforce. This one will serve as a treasured keepsake for years down the road. It’ll even get approval from the office watch-snobs.

Escort MAX 360c Radar and Laser Detector

So they’re a good driver but also a lead foot. Help them avoid speeding tickets with the best radar detector on the market.

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