The best graduation gifts of 2022: 35 thoughtful ideas

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If there was ever a time for pomp and circumstance, it is now.

Happy Graduation Class of 2022! Be it undergraduate, graduate school, high school or heck — even Kindergarten, everyone deserves to be celebrated after achieving this academic milestone.

Now more than ever, as many students had to endure a year or two of pandemic learning, Zooming from home and putting in the extra effort to stay focused on getting that degree.

Since some graduation ceremonies will still be virtual this year, getting your recent grad something really special may mean more to them than ever.

Graduation gifts can be big or small, and we rounded up plenty of each to mark this special occasion. Some are more practical, like diploma frames and your first post-grad work bag, while other are more fun, letting your former student still have some fun for the summer.

Read on for the best graduation gifts for 2022 and then break out the balloons and champagne (if of age, of course) to celebrate.

The best college graduation gifts of 2022:

1. GraduationMall Mahogany Diploma Frame with Tassel Holder, $39


Show off their amazing accomplishments with this diploma frame. It not only has room for the diploma itself but also an area to preserve your graduation cap tassel — yet another memory of the huge milestone event.

2. HP ENVY x360 Convertible Laptop, $1,050

An HP laptop

Retire their old college laptop and replace it with this new one from HP. The ENVY x360 Convertible Laptop can be used as a traditional computer, or flipped around as used as a tablet, perfect for their first post-grad job.

3. Personalized Champagne Milestone Vase, $75

A vase of roses
Uncommon Goods

For the graduate who loves mementos, flowers and possibly champagne if of age, this is a timeless gift. The bottle-turned-vase is fully customizable with your graduate’s name and graduation date, making it a great and personalized gift.

4. Our Place Always Pan, $145

A pink Always Pan on a counter with orange cups
Our Place

Start them off on the right foot with a new pan that does it all from Our Place. This is a great gift for the graduate who is now off the meal plan and cooking on their own, as it replaces the need for eight other kitchen items all at once.

5. The Bartesian Cocktail Maker, $370

A Bartesian making a pink martini

If your grad is over 21 and done with the college days of cheap beer and college bars, this is the gift for them. The Bartesian is essentially a cocktail robot, dispensing the perfect mix of alcohol and mixers to create classic cocktails for future dinner parties.

6. Beis The Work Tote, $138

A black work tote bag

Set them up for success with this versatile work tote from Beis. The bag comes in a variety of neutral colors to match any interview outfit, fully equipped with a laptop and a water bottle compartment for your commute.

7. Herschel Classic Backpack XL, $60

A black backpack and red on the inside

For those that prefer a backpack, here is a great option for work or even graduate school. The Herschel backpack in the XL size comes with a laptop compartment, water bottle sleeves and more space to fit all your office or school needs.

8. Here For The Burn Candle, $36

A black candle with a white label that reads "adulting do not disturb"
Here For The Burn

You heard the candle. This is a great little gift to show your grad some love and humor. The Here For The Burn candles make awesome gifts and have a variety of funny phrases to choose from, in addition to delicious scents to warm up there new post-grad home.

9. EveryPlate Meal Kit Subscription, $4.99 per meal, use our link for $1.79 per meal and take 20% off your next 2 boxes with code NYPEP

An orange box of EveryPlate meal kit

This is the gift that keeps on giving, teaching your grad to cook and enjoy eating well. EveryPlate is one of the meal kits we reviewed and loved, and we think your graduate will love it too. Plus, at just $1.79 per meal, that is cheaper than their normal ramen and ice cream.

10. Amazon Music Unlimited, $10 per month, free for 30 days

A chart showing Amazon Music

The worst thing about graduating is that once you are done with college, you are also done with the student discounts that come with it. When their Spotify or Apple Music discount ends, give them the gift of a few months of Amazon Music Unlimited, so they can enjoy all the music and podcasts they want, free for 30 days.

The best high school graduation gifts of 2022:

1. Apple AirPods Pro with MagSafe Charging Case, $175

White Airpod pros

Listen up, this is what they really want for graduation. Airpods are a must-have for all high school grads, allowing them to take calls and listen to music remotely and with ease. We found this pair at Walmart for $175.

2. Dash Mini Waffle Maker, Grill and Griddle 3 in 1 Pack, $38

Three mini grills

Dash to Amazon to get this set of three perfect gifts for your grad. These mini griddles and waffle makers make the best present for a high school student who will soon have to cook on their own. They can make breakfast, lunch and dinner, and come in fun colors to match their dorm.

3. Things They Don’t Teach You in School Game, $20

A card game called "things they don't teach in school"
Uncommon Goods

We know they just finished high school, but how about another lesson? This card game is a great way to connect with your recent grad and prepare them for the college cocktail parties to come, with trivia and fun facts.

4. Homesick Candles, $34

A New York City candle

You don’t want them to be homesick once they head off to college or the next post-high school step, right? Help to remind them of home with a candle from their home state, or even one that reminds them of a treasured memory with Homesick Candles. They have one for almost every state, country and nostalgic memory, so be sure to browse them all.

5. Opopop Discovery Kit, $40

A kit of popcorn and a yellow bowl

This is a perfect gift, especially if all they will have to cook with is a dorm microwave. Opopop is great for study sessions or a movie night with friends, and the Discovery Kit includes six flavors of flavor-wrapped kernels and the microwave-safe bowl to pop them in.

6. Montblanc Luxury Pen, prices vary

A black and gold pen

Just like graduation, getting your first luxury pen is a right of passage. Get them a stunning writing instrument from Montblanc, choosing from an array of options they will cherish. Many also come with free personalization, making the gift even more special.

7. Nikon Z50 Compact Mirrorless Digital Camera with Flip Under “Selfie/Vlogger” LCD, $1,197

A black Nikon camera and additional lens

Allow them to capture every moment of their next adventure with this awesome camera from Nikon. The digital camera comes with two lenses and the ability to flip the screen to be forward-facing, perfect for selfies, vlogs, TikTok and more.

8. Pandora Congratulations Graduation Bracelet Set, $240

A silver Pandora bracelet with three graduation charms

Wear your accomplishments on your wrist, so you never forget the special milestone. This set from Pandora includes the bracelet itself, plus three stunning charms to start their collection. It comes with a 2022 stack of books and cap, the Wise Owl charm and a star that says “congratulations.”

9. Chamberlain Coffee Complete Coffee Collection Night Owl, $135

A set of Chamberlain Coffee Night Owl with beans, mugs, cups and more on an orange background
Chamberlain Coffee

Fuel their future late-night study sessions with this complete set of Chamberlain Coffee. This is an especially good gift if they love influencer Emma Chamberlain, or just have a knack for coffee. The kit comes with two bags of Night Owl blend coffee beans, a Night Owl Coffee Bag, a tote bag, to-go cup, mason jar, a mug and a stainless steel straw set, too.

10. A graduation trip with Jet Blue, prices vary

A blue sign saying "you are here, where to next?"
Jet Blue

Instead of an object, give them the gift of an experience with a graduation trip on Jet Blue. Right now they are offering tons of super affordable flights, with flights from New York to Boston starting at just $39, Newark to Miami for $45 and more.

The best middle school graduation gifts of 2022

1. BaubleBar Custom Multi Cutout Pisa Bracelet, $36

A stack of gold bracelets

Celebrate your little one becoming a high schooler with this bracelet from BaubleBar. You can choose to have their name spelled out, or opt for their high school’s name, initials or graduation year — the options are endless.

2. Customized Hydro Flask Water Bottle, prices vary

A customized Hydro Flask bottle
Hydro Flask

Now that they will be roaming the halls of high school, make sure they are hydrated with the coolest bottle in the school. Let them customize it themselves, or design a bottle for them in their new school colors using the My Hydro site, adding personalization, too.

3. YADEA Electric Kick Scooter KS3 Lite, $379

A black and pink scooter

While they can’t drive yet, if they live close enough to school, this electric scooter is a great gift. Make sure to also get them a helmet, and then let them ride off on this light-weight electric scooter, coming in pink or neon yellow.

4. Dare To Roam Prodigy Backpack, $98

A light orange backpack
Dare To Roam

Set them up for success with a new backpack from Dare To Roam. The line, deigned by singer Ciara, is made with anti-microbial fabric to keep them cleaner in the crowded hallways of high school, plus they come in array of colors for all students.

5. Bake Me A Wish Congratulations Desserts, prices vary

A chocolate cake with the word Congratulations
Bake Me A Wish

Say congratulations in a delicious way, with a personalized dessert from Bake Me A Wish. The bakery can customize just about anything for your graduate, and then ship them with ease right to your door nationwide.

6. Nintendo Switch Bundle with Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, $370

Mario Kart 8 Nintendo Switch

If they have been begging for a Nintendo Switch, this may be the milestone to gift one. The coveted Mario Kart 8 Deluxe bundle is finally back in stock at Walmart, after selling out multiple times over the holiday season.

7. Urban Outfitters Desk Lamp Bluetooth Speaker, $30

A lamp with a phone on it
Urban Outfitters

This lamp will make them more inclined to study next year, when they can listen to their favorite music at the same time. The desk lamp comes with a cup holder to hold their pens, pencils and other necessities, while the base itself is a Bluetooth enabled speaker and can pair with any smart device.

8. Casetify Phone Case, prices vary

Two phone cases in purple black and white patterns

If they got a new phone for the start of high school, make sure it is protected with a good case. Not only are Casetify cases durable, but they are trendy as well. Make sure to take. alook at recent collaborations, too, like Harry Potter, Olivia Rodrigo, the NHL and more.

9. Polaroid Now Starter Set, $155

A white Polaroid camera and box of film

Polaroids are perfect for decorating your new high school locker, making memories last a lifetime. This starter kit is a great gift, coming with the Polaroid Now i-Type Instant Camera in either black, white or an assortment of fun colors like pink, green, blue and more. It also comes with two packs of color film and one black and white pack, for artistic shots of all your new buddies.

10. SnackBOX Care Package, $39

A red box filled with snacks and treats

Honestly, at the end of the day, all they really want are some good snacks and treats. This SnackBOX will last you into the summer, as it comes with 50 snacks fro them to munch on after completing another year in school. Add a gift message and then send it right to their door, perfect for a long-distance congratulations.

The best Kindergarten graduation gifts of 2022

1. Fire 7 Kids Tablet, $100

A pink kid's tablet

Set up your child for success with this e-learning tablet. Sold on Amazon, the Fire 7 Kids Tablet comes in three bright colors and comes with parental controls and educational apps to make reading and learning fun.

2. Mickey Mouse Cooler Backpack, $70

A Mickey Mouse backpack and cooler

Get them ready for a big-kid school day with this backpack from ShopDisney. The bag doubles as a cooler, keeping their lunch nice and fresh and snacks extra yummy.

3. Build-A-Bear Online Exclusive Cuddly Brown Bear Graduation Gift Set, $20

A teddy bear with a graduation shirt

Give your newest graduate this cuddly bear, complete with a graduation tee. The Build-A-Bear comes fully stuffed when you order online, or you can choose for it to come unstuffed to then take in to your nearest store to stuff in-person.

4. The Night Before First Grade Book, $4

A kid's book called "The Night Before First Grade"

Make sure your child is as excited for first grade as possible with this book. Read to them before the first day of school and settle their worries, with this fun and silly story about the night before school.

5. Crayola 5-in-1 Card Making Kit for Kids, $22

A pack of Crayola products

Create some fun graduation cards together, or craft throughout the summer with this fun kit from Crayola. The five-piece set comes with markers, glitter glue, scissors and colorful construction paper, which is all you need for a great graduation crafting party.

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