20 Holiday Gifts for Students to Get Their Parents

Getting your parents gifts for the holidays is a perfect way to show your appreciation and share cheer. However, figuring out what to get your parents can be very difficult, which is why we created this guide for Christmas (or Hanukkah or Kwanza) gifts for parents from students.

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On this list, we’ve tried to give you a good mix of options. Some gifts are personalized, some are funny and others are cozy and warm, but the thing they all have in common is we think your parents will love them!

Hopefully, this list helps you to figure out just what to get them. It’s a list filled with easily purchased items, heartfelt personalized keepsakes, and more!

20 Holiday Gifts Your Parents Will Love

1. Photo Calendar

Collect photos of you and your family and put them in a photo calendar. Bonus points for organizing the photos throughout the years by month, for instance, all your family photos taken in June will be on the June month. Websites such as Shutterfly, Walgreens, Mixbook, and even Amazon have customizable photo calendars. 

2. Planned Activity Together

This gift idea may warm their hearts. Pick out an activity to do with your family and plan it all out. Ideas for activities are ice skating, sledding, baking cookies, movie night, etc. The ideas are endless! Think of what they would enjoy doing with you. Since you are at school, your parents may want more quality time with you and this is a great idea to give them that. 

3. Photo Album

Along the same theme as the photo calendar, create a photo album to gift to your parents this holiday. You can add family photos, photos of yourself and your activities, and any other photos that are special to you and your family.

4. Framed or Canvas Family Picture

If there is just one photo that sticks out to you, consider printing and framing it or printing it on a canvas to hang on a wall in your home.

5. A Massage

Treat your parent to a well-deserved massage! The serene environment and the incredible relaxation afterward make it a thoughtful gift. A massage is not just a present for them; it’s a little something that contributes to a happier and more relaxed atmosphere at home.

If your folks aren’t into the whole spa treatment thing, what about a massage seat cushion for their work chair or a neck massager? They can relax in the comfort of their own home!

6. Treat Them to a Meal – SANS PHONES!

Consider gifting your parent a special meal together, sans cell phones. Amidst the holiday hustle, taking the time to catch up as a family, reminiscing about cherished memories, and making plans for the future will feel truly special. With the chaos of the season, a simple, uninterrupted family dinner becomes a heartfelt way to make the holidays even more memorable.

7. Personalized Jewelry

This can be a meaningful and unique gesture that doesn’t have to break the bank. By searching on Esty (or even Amazon), you can find plenty of personalized pieces that allow you to express your love for your parent in a distinctive way—from initial necklaces to birthstone bracelets and event car key chains. 

8. Funny Kitchen Towels

Give your parents a gift with a humorous twist with funny kitchen towels. Whether they boast clever quotes or charming illustrations, these towels will add a fun and personal touch to your parent’s kitchen space, making daily tasks a little more enjoyable.

9. Vegetable Chopper

These have been all over social media recently and for a good reason, because they seem so functional. If your parents enjoy cooking or even if they don’t, check this one out, it could just make their cooking way easier. Check this vegetable chopper out from Amazon, it’s under $20!

10. A Warm Candle

Do your parents have a favorite smell? Evergreen trees? Warm Cinnamon? Coffee? Or is there a smell that reminds you of them? Whatever smell it is, make sure you sniff around and figure out which one you’d think they’d like the most. Add a personalized note about why you picked out that scent and you have a heartfelt and useable gift idea.

11. Salt and Pepper Shakers

It may seem silly to get your parents salt and pepper shakers if they already have containers that they use. But what they might not have is electric salt and pepper grinders or these cute guinea pig salt and pepper shakers.

12. A Cozy Blanket

The holidays can get chilly, so give them something they can bundle up with. Blankets can be a fun gift because it is something that gets used or can be on display that reminds them of you. Pick out a color that they like or maybe a color that matches your couch or living room.

13. Ornament

Picking out an ornament can be a great gift. Do your parents like coffee? Check out this ornament. Or do they enjoy grilling? Check out this ornament. Do they love golf? Check out this ornament. These are just a few fun examples of types of ornaments you could pick out. Try to find something that’s important or special to your parents to make it more personal.

14. Indoor Plants

Low-maintenance options like succulents or peace lilies can brighten up their space and improve air quality. Trader Joe’s, although it’s a grocery store, has great options for fun and cheap plants.

15. A Good Book

Is there a series your parents always talked about reading? Or maybe an aesthetic coffee table book would be more up their alley. Whatever the book is, a book is a great way to say you were thinking about them because it takes time to pick out, read reviews, and get the perfect book for them.

16. Board Game or Card Game

Get your parents a board or card game and make plans for a family game night. Enjoy quality time together, fostering laughter and competition. Games like Scrabble, Uno, or Settlers of Catan are great choices.

17. Puzzle of Their Favorite Thing or Place

You could get your parents a jigsaw puzzle of their favorite place or something they really like. If you have a favorite location to go to as a family, search to see if you can find a puzzle that depicts that place. Or if you all really like pizza, pick out a pizza puzzle!

18. Coffee Mug

Choose a coffee mug with a meaningful message or design that. If they don’t already have one, pick out a mug with your school logo on it. Every sip will remind them of you! Or if your parents are like me, get them a Yeti mug so their coffee will stay hot all morning long.

19. Pickleball Rackets

This trendy sport can be for all skill levels and can be very fun to play. Consider getting your parents pickleball rackets to start playing. All you need is rackets, wiffle balls, and an open tennis court at your local park. This sport is a fun, active hobby for your whole family!

20. You

For most parents, just having you home and present is the best gift you can give them! So when you are around, get your head out of your phone and just talk and listen to your parents. That will no doubt be better than any purchased gift you can find.

Picking out holiday presents for your parents is a great way to show them how much they mean to you. For any of these gift ideas, adding a personalized card or note can add even more meaning to the present. 

For more helpful tips, tools, and advice, check out College Raptor’s articles. There you will find articles such as How to Pack For Your Study Abroad, The Art of Learning From Failure, and How to Use Social Media Wisely for Students.