If you’re reading this article, the chances are good you have already contributed (financially and otherwise) to make your grandchild’s dream of a college education a reality. But with the start of the semester right around the corner, you may be looking for the perfect “dorm-warming” or back-to-college gift. Here are a few suggestions to get you started:
A Great Pair of Wireless Noise-Cancelling Headphones
College dorms are noisy. (These days, even college libraries are noisy.) Students need to be able to shut out the outside world so they can concentrate on their studies … or just relax with some music. Look for a pair that’s Bluetooth enabled so your favorite student can use the headphones with all their devices, no strings (or wires) attached! You can spend a few hundred dollars, but the most popular (and highest- rated models) average around $70.
A Versatile Coffee Maker
The dearly beloved hotplate is a thing of the past (and strictly forbidden at many colleges.) A much better choice is a durable coffee maker (which also provides hot water for ramen noodles and other essentials!) Steer clear of the ones with a glass carafe (almost sure to break at some point) and opt instead for one with a metal container. Some models even let you brew directly into a to-go container. (Perfect when your student is running off to catch an early morning class). And while k-cup brewers are awfully convenient, they are also a pretty expensive way to get your morning cup – so go with a model that can use good old-fashioned supermarket-grade ground coffee. You can get a highly-rated model from Cuisinart or other top brands for less than $80.
Space is always at a premium in a college dorm room or apartment … but that doesn’t keep friends from dropping by to hang out. That’s what makes foldable furniture such a smart gift. A bungee chair, for example, folds flat so it can slide under the bed or in a closet when it’s not needed. A well-made bungee chair goes for around $40, so maybe get a matching pair!
You already know this: Your grandchild LIVES on his/her smartphone. And, when they are away from home at college, it’s even more of a lifeline. A portable charger –especially one that can provide several charges before it needs to be plugged back in – can be a real lifesaver. And the great thing about this gift is … you can never have too many! You can get a top-rated model for around $30 – just make sure it comes with cables to fit Apple and Samsung devices (most chargers do.)
Compact Tool Kit
While not the most glamorous gift, this might be the one that makes your grandchild a dorm hero – especially on move-in day. Consider a small kit with a hammer, set of pliers, screwdrivers, and wrenches … or go a little bigger to get other essentials like a compact handsaw. In this case, your thoughtfulness will only run you about $20.
The Best Gift of All…
Even the coolest gadget will break or get lost, but one thing endures forever – the value of your grandchild’s education. Starting at about the cost of one of the items above, you can help protect that priceless opportunity by purchasing an Allianz Tuition Insurance policy for your favorite student.
Tuition insurance can protect the significant investment your family has made in higher education. If a covered illness or other unforeseen event necessitates a mid-semester withdrawal, up to 100% of tuition, room, and board and other fees may be reimbursed, regardless of the college’s own refund policy.
In addition, Allianz Tuition Insurance also features Student Life Assistance – a 24-hour hotline your grandchild can call to get immediate help in the event of an accident, illness or travel mishap.
Send your grandchild (and everyone else in the family) off to college with the gift of peace of mind. It takes just a moment to choose a plan for a semester’s worth of protection.