College Student’s Guide to Cheap Wedding Gifts

Spring weddings are right around the corner, and you may think you can’t afford anything the engaged couple has put on their gift registry. Before you decide to give up and arrive empty-handed, check these tips that will help you find a frugal and thoughtful gift.

All gifts are $50 or less and are sure to give you the creative edge in gift-giving:

Frame the invitation ($10-$30): The newlyweds can cherish their wedding day and put art on their wall with this gift. Take the invitation to a craft store, and matte it with a color that really shows off the invitation. You can use white chair covers for weddings multiple times with different styles and accessories to give your special events a whole new enchanting aura every time!

Pay for a date ($40): Weddings are so expensive these days that most couples forgo the honeymoon. If you know they won’t be able to get away after the wedding, purchase them a $20 gift card to a restaurant and a $20 gift card to the movies.

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Have a Happy and Green Holiday

Christmas is my favorite time of the year. The lights, pretty-packaged gifts and the holiday sweets make the winter months a little more bearable. But, unfortunately, Christmas is also a time when we over consume, wastefully toss gift wrapping paper and crank up our energy bills with Christmas lights.
Whether you’re spending the holidays at home or on campus, it’s important to keep the environment in mind.

Follow these tips to have a green holiday:

Wrapping: Use the “funnies” pages out of your local newspaper to wrap gifts, or use them as tissue paper. Find old paper bags and use them as gift bags. Top off your bag or wrapped gift with a large bow to add a touch of festivity. You’ll save money on gift wrapping, and you will also be doing Mother
Earth a favor.

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Make a Charitable Gift to Support Education

charityDuring the holiday season, we often turn our thoughts to those in need. A charitable gift to an education organization not only helps students while they’re in school, but can also give them a stepping-stone to a leading a better life. Consider making a donation to one of the organizations below, all of which are working to improve education around the world.

If you purchase a DonorsChoose giving card as a gift, your recipient can choose the classroom project they want to fund.


UNICEF not only provides for children’s basic needs, they also provide them with resources for their intellectual development. For example, UNICEF creates schools for children living in refugee camps around the world.

Millennium Promise

Millennium Promise is an international non-profit organization that works with impoverished communities to improve their living conditions. One of their primary goals is to ensure that all children have access to a full primary school education.

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Holiday Gift Ideas for Mom on a College Budget

She gave you the gift of life, and even though you might be a poor college student now, she still deserves a gift this holiday season. Sure, a framed copy of your report card for this semester is a good idea, but maybe you should consider changing it up this year.

Here are three more creative gift ideas you can get for your mom this year. And yes, we are keeping the fact that you might not exactly be rolling in the dough in mind. However, there are also some more luxury minded options.

1. Pampered Momma
College Budget: Body Lotions Estimated Cost: $25
Luxury Budget: Spa Gift Card Estimated Cost: at least $50

Most moms love being pampered, whether this means taking a bubble bath at home or getting a massage at the local spa. You can either create an at-home-spa experience for Momma or you can send her somewhere else for her pampering. The at-home spa could consist of body lotions, bubble bath, and a loofah. You can buy a gift card in any amount you want, but most spa packages cost at least $50.

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Holiday Gift Ideas for Dad on a College Budget

He’s the guy who taught you how to ride a bike. Then, when you were ready for a nicer set of wheels, he taught you how to drive a car. He’s provided advice and listened when you needed him.

There’s no way you can give him a gift as wonderful as he deserves, but you can give Dad something better than a burned CD full of music he’ll never listen to. Here are some creative ideas for gifts for Dad this holiday season. (As always, we are keeping in mind that you might not have tons of cash to put towards gifts this year. Hey, you’re a college student, we get it.)

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Holiday Gift Ideas for Your Sister on a College Budget

Maybe she acted as your second mom when you were growing up, or maybe she was the terror who stole your favorite toys and wouldn’t give them back. Maybe she walked with you to school on your first day and told you how to avoid the mean kids in class or maybe she was the mean kid in your class.

Either way, she’s your sister and now that you are both grown up (although that does not necessarily mean you are more mature), it’s time to show some sibling love and get her the best holiday gift you can think of…and can afford on your college student budget.

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Holiday Gift Ideas for Your Brother on a College Budget

Alright, so maybe he wasn’t exactly nice to you when you were both younger. Maybe he pulled your hair or hid your favorite toys. Hopefully he’s matured a little by now and has stopped irritating you just for the pleasure of getting on your nerves. He’s your brother and even though he might not deserve it at times, you should probably get him a gift this holiday season.

Here are some cheap and fun gift ideas you can get your brother this year. And hey, you don’t really have to spend a lot of money.

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Peer-Pressure Giving: Senior Gift

donations-jarThe senior gift is a tradition at many colleges and universities. Students and student governments approach fund raising for this monitory offering to their soon-to-be alma mater in a variety of different ways, from direct donations to elaborate events. The percentage of seniors who give back upon graduation is obviously a point of pride for the class, and a marketable statistic for the college. But is pressure to donate getting out of hand at some schools?

Although anonymous giving is often praised, it’s not an option for senior classes who wish to boast their senior-gift participation. At Dartmouth College last year, Laura A. DeLorenzo was the only student who decided against making a donation, and in turn was blasted with criticism by the student newspaper and blog, The Little Green Blog. The New York Times reports that the class had been offered an additional $100,000.00 if they could get every student to contribute.

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Cheap Holiday Gifts for Students

giftsThe holidays are when we spend time with family and friends that we haven’t seen in a while. We sing carols, feast on delicious family favorites, and exchange gifts. It is truly a special time of the year.

But what do you do when your part-time job doesn’t give you enough extra cash to buy mom that gold necklace she wants or to buy your significant other tickets to the concert he or she has been talking about since October?

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