Care Package for a Boy in College

Updated on September 16, 2011
T.K. asks from Grand Prairie, TX
21 answers

I am trying to think of things to send my stepson. It's his 1st year in school. 1st time away from home. What can I send him that will be an encouragement. I thought about having his little brother and sister draw pictures for him and sending a few hard copy pictures that he can hang on his bulletin board of the family. Maybe some homemade cookies or brownies. I'll throw in some gum and starburst. What else can I put in there that will be easy to ship? DId anyone ever send you a care package? What do you remember getting and just loving?

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answers from Dallas on

I loved getting a roll of quarters for laundry!!
Gum, homemade goodies were the best, magazines, microwave popcorn, sonic gift card, maybe a beanie cap for winter coming up?!?, SOCKS!!, chapstick...

The quarters are key though! Ha!

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

Homemade cookies/brownies
Ramen, Easy Mac, peanut butter
Favorite snacks - granola bars, popcorn, Slim Jims, candy, gum
Breath mints
Gift card to pizza place or coffee shop
Hot cocoa mix
Favorite breakfast cereal
Pack of playing cards

Love the quarters for the laundry idea too!

4 moms found this helpful

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answers from Richmond on

Aww I love that you'll send drawing from his younger siblings, that's perfect!

I sent my baby brother a care package his 2nd year, with socks and underwear (because he wasn't doing much laundry!), quarters for laundry anyway, even though I knew he'd spend it on something else, the numbers for every cab service within a 10 mile radius, some biscotti (his favorite), some gift cards for starbucks and panera, and a small collage I had made of him, me, and our other brother from when we were very young :)

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

I love the commercial where the daughter opens her care package and digs out the peanut butter and is eating it with a spoon when she calls her mom...

Some of his favorite snacks, gift card or two for Starbucks, iTunes or places he's likes to eat, quarters for doing laundry, a new t-shirt, a magazine or two on a subject he likes, some socks...and I think the pictures from his siblings will be nice. Keep the care packages simple and not too expensive so you can send them a few times a school year : )

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

I would think snack foods that are individually packed. Maybe powedered drink mix to put in water bottles. Maybe even money, you know kiddos are always low on money. I think sending pictures will be nice, but I would not think he would put them up on the wall. He may keep them though. If he is into music maybe a new CD of his favorite artist, or some money on a Itunes card.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

Food and money!

My mom and dad sent us care packages monthly when we were in college, as did my grandmothers. They typically included:
- baked goods with enough to share with new friends
- a card
- new pictures of my sisters
- some little hair accessory or school supplies
- candy
- newspaper clippings from my hometown (sounds corny, but it made me feel like I was still connected)
- cash (my dad always threw in a $20 with a note to buy pizza for me and my roomie that weekend)

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Denver on

gift cards, homemade cookies/snacks, pics and maybe just some notes...

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Lynchburg on

Hi T.!

Just sent off a care package to my son (freshman)...He got an on campus apartment at the last minute, so my package included a drain board for dishes...a pizza pan...tons of granola bars...some 'dum dum' lollies (his fav - and halloween is coming)...a plastic container to make beverages...tins of powdered gatorade (another fav of his...for me...YUCK!)...some homemade banana bread...some micro popcorn packages...animal crackers...and some sponges surrounding it all in the hope he will CLEAN!! lol

He got it wednesday nite...and LOVED it...

Best luck!

***OH...and a note...with some cash tucked in!***

Have fun!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Food. Mac n cheese in a bowl. Ramen. Chef B.
Soap, Deoderant

Single serve snack bars, chips, etc.

Halloween is coming, You could send him a package with tons of candy, spooky gooey stuff.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Jacksonville on

Send him some deodorant, a fresh tube of toothpaste and a fresh toothbrush, some homemade treats (enough to share), and a couple of $5 or $10 gift cards to his fav fast food places or sub-sandwich places, and Starbucks. Maybe some quarters for the coin operated washing machines. :)

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

I'm sure there are way more sophisticated ways nowadays to deal with college laundry, but my grammy used to save quarters for me in O. of those little quarter holder books and send them to me when she had it filled up. I LOVED getting those!
Change is still good in vending machines, right? LOL
So, I agree with Krista and money!
Those were the poorest days of my life.
Snacks, cookies, Pop Tarts, Noodle cups....
Oh--my across the hall dorm mate (a vegetarian) used to get wheels of cheese from her mom every month or so--she lived on that and crackers. Does he have a small fridge? Maybe cheese & pepperoni & crackers?

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

We sent snack food, gas cards, family photos and his baby sister's artwork. Just getting something nice from home is a good thing.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Kansas City on

When I was in college, my Grandma would send me care packages that were awesome. At Halloween I would get halloween decorations (some of them I still use!) and candy and stickers and stuff. At Valentine's day, the same thing. I would also get packages of Kraft Macaroni, my favorite. It was always special to know that she was thinking of me.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

Popcorn, nuts, gift cards (to fast food places or Target or Walmart), homemade food (cookies, fudge, brownies), digital pictures only (I don't think many guys will actually put up pictures from family but will still want to see the artwork or pictures), his favorite candy or snacks. Remember while he may be your boy, he is becoming a man so now it the time you begin to treat him like a man especially before his peers. It's important.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

For sure rolls of quarters!!!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Norfolk on

Homemade rice krispies treats, Pop-tarts, and boxes of cereal were welcomed when I was in school. Some gift cards for pizza places in the area, some magazines on subjects he's interested in, Cup o Noodles soup (make sure he has a hot pot), microwave popcorn, a special mug and some ground coffee. It's so great to go to the post office at school and find out you had a PACKAGE!! It meant a lot to me, especially when I got stuff from non-parents (brother, cousin, etc.).

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dover on

My son is now a junior but here are some ideas of things that I have sent him or sent back with him when he's been home for a visit:

Drink mixes (to be mixed in a water bottle)
Gift cards for restaurants (Subway, McDonalds, Chili's, Applebee's or other local ones)
Gift cards for movies or bowling (other activities too)

These are things that ship easy and they can always use.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

GIrls decorate their doors and their rooms, but I don't remember how much guys do that. So you could send him holiday decorations. When my SIL was in college, I sent her a mini-Christmas tree, etc. You could also send a "birthday party in a box" for his birthday. Also, think of things he could share with his friends, like a board game or card game. And don't forget the popcorn.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Cincinnati on

I didn't go to college, but I moved from Indiana to Massachussetts when I was 18. My mom would send my cookies, bags of fruit (apples and oranges but you have to bubble wrap them good) home made crispix mix. Homemade tomatoe juice (my fav drink and once again carefully bubble wrapped) gloves (cold in MA lol) and cds (we have the same taste in music). Something I use to send her and my grandparents was a video postcard. I took my video camera around my apartment and my job and introduced them to my friends.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I always loved getting food. Cookies, brownies, microwave popcorn, definitely gum.

Definitely agree with other posts about deodorant and toothpast and stuff.

Looks like you've gotten lots of great ideas. I would have loved all these things.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Antonio on

I think pepperoni or a huge salami would be great. Plus maybe some triscuits and a 'we're thinking about you' note or "BRAIN FOOD!" note. Gift card to Sonic with a reminder that Happy Hour is from 2-4 for half price drinks. Most dorms have microwaves - so popcorn is a great idea. ACT II came out with two new flavors that are cheap - Valentina and Queso Jalepeno. Orville came out with a few too but I haven't tried them (too expensive). Index cards to remind him to study! Send him $5 for cover-charge for the band playing at the local bar. My funny-but-maybe-not-so-funny-if-he-needs-them-answer is "condoms" b/c ya never know! College freshman and lots of parties coming up!

1 mom found this helpful
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