So, we’ve reached that time of year when suddenly Christmas is very close and a lot of us have, well, not done our shopping. If that’s you, then don’t panic. We’ve got some great last-minute Christmas present ideas for you, whether its for your parents, your friends, or your partner. Find great gift ideas and places that are great for last-minute gift shopping with the help of our handy list!

No matter who you’re shopping for, there are some great Christmas gifts for uni students around, that won’t break the bank. So let’s jump in.

What the heck do you buy university students?

Whether you’re a student buying for a friend at uni, or you’re shopping for a pal that has recently left to study, university students can often be a bit tricky to buy for. Especially when you’re on a budget. But it doesn’t have to be a total pain to find the perfect gift.

Below, we’re gonna dive into easy gifts for most students, many of which you can buy on the high street on a tight budget. It’s time to go shopping…

Easy Christmas gifts for a student budget

uni student gift cards

Gift cards

We know it sounds obvious, but some of the best gifts come from ourselves. If you’ve left it this late, and you really don’t know what to buy someone, a gift card is a great way to ensure that they get something they really love.

If you want to make it a bit more of a personal gift, why not pair it with some chocolates, wine or flowers? That way you have shown effort, but also not clogged up their shelves with some random item they may never use. Your choice of gift card also tells the person you’ve put thought into it, by selecting a place or brand they love shopping at!

Experience gifts

Places like Virgin Experience, Red Letter Days and Wowcher are great options if you don’t want to get someone something physical. You can spend as much or as little as you want, and get them a one person or group experience to enjoy. A memory is a great Christmas gift, and they definitely won’t know it was a last-minute panic buy!

Concert tickets

Just like buying someone an experience day, concert tickets are an alternative to filling someone’s house with more stuff. If you know your best friend loves an artist who is performing near them soon but would never spend money on themselves, then why not get those tickets for them? You could even buy two and take them yourself.


If you know someone who loves something in particular (beer, socks, magazines, a certain TV show), then you can get them a subscription to a service that will post them those items each month! There are subscriptions for pretty much anything, some of our favourites are:


You could also DIY it, and build people personalised hampers for Christmas. All you need are Christmas gift bags or wicker baskets and some of our friends and family’s fanciest favourites. That cheese your dad never treats himself to? That bottle of Jack Daniels your mum has been eyeing up for months but would never splurge on? Buy it, bag it, gift it. Sorted. Complete with some gift wrap and ribbon, and you’ve got a really heartfelt gift.

DIY craft kits

Got a friend or family member that is particularly crafty? Buying something personal that the recipient really enjoys doesn’t have to break the bank, but can be a really sweet gesture.

Or, if you feel like you need to spend a little more, why not put together some mini stocking fillers with crafty bits, and shop around for other gift ideas?

christmas gifts for uni students

Drinking games

Whether you’re the student house that always hosts pre-drinks, or you’re heading to someone else’s student housing, drinking games are an easy, cheap gift. Think about it, it’s pretty much a deck of cards! What can possibly go wrong? You might want to pair it with a bottle of JD, though, for the perfect gift.

Some of the best games are the straightforward ones, after all. Check out Cards Against Humanity and other popular board games.

Practical gifts for your fellow students

Now, these gifts might not be super, super exciting, but they sure do have thought behind them.

These practical gifts aren’t strictly for students, either, so if you’re struggling to find your I’ve-got-everything family member a gift, these could do the trick.

uni students gifts ideas

Planner or journal

Got a friend who loves writing notes? Maybe you rob them after each lecture, even. You can pick up a decent planner, journal or writing set in most shops and online. Or if you do have a few days to turn it around, why not find a personalised gift online somewhere like Etsy?

Noise cancelling headphones

We all know that student housing is famous for being, well, noisy. So if your friend is struggling to find those precious moments of peace, some noise cancelling headphones could be the answer to their prayers.

Portable charger

A total lifesaver, a portable charger can be great for festivals, events and travelling. Got a friend who is always asking if you have a charger? Or maybe your Mum is constantly draining her battery listening to voice notes from her mate Janet? We got you. Plus, you can pick them up pretty cheap, so if you’re on a tight budget, no problem.

uni student gift ideas

A backpack

Sure, it might not be mega exciting, but a decent backpack or satchel is crucial for every university student (or anyone with a job, really). You can usually pick something snazzy up in somewhere like Typo, so not only is it a practical gift, but it can be stylish too.

Cooking classes

Now, depending on how well your uni friends can cook… This Christmas gift idea could fall into a couple different categories! But the chances are, helping your pal learn to cook would definitely have some practical benefits. Shop around though, as it can get pricey.

Eco friendly Christmas gift ideas

Thinking of gifting green this Christmas?

Eco-friendly gifts are on the rise! They’re often locally made, sustainable, and either something consumable, able to be kept for ages, or reused. Best part? They’re planet-friendly and totally a pretty sweet gesture.

Check out these eco-cool gift ideas.

university student christmas gifts

Reusable water bottle

A reusable water bottle is the perfect Christmas gift for a university student, or ya know, your Dad. Not only does it encourage less single plastic use, but it’s also super practical for those long lecture days. Plus, with countless styles and designs available, it’s both a functional and fashionable accessory.

We’re big fans of Chilly’s reusable water bottles.

Plastic-free phone cases

Now, this could also go in the practical gifts section, but we’re gonna leave it here for now! Can anyone remember a time we didn’t put a case on our phones? It’s weird not to, these days!

Nevertheless, if you’re looking to cut down on single use plastic, why not check out some plastic-free phone cases? Wave cases are eco-friendly, protective, biodegradable and free from plastic. Plus, they’re very pretty!

sustainable soaps

Sustainable soap

If you’re eco conscious (or the recipient is), you’re gonna wanna check out some great eco friendly beauty products. Of course, you can shop somewhere like Lush that pride themselves on creating cruelty free, fresh cosmetics, or why not take a peek at Friendly Soap?

uni plants

Cute gifts for a uni room

A uni students’ room is their sanctuary, so finding homeware and decorations within your budget can be some of the best gifts. Here’s a few student gifts you can easily get online, or during a trip to IKEA (because who doesn’t want to go to IKEA!):

  • Coasters
  • Photo frames
  • Film posters
  • Arty prints
  • World scratch maps
  • Bedding
  • Plants
  • Sunrise alarm clock
  • Candles

Where to get your last minute Christmas gifts

Stuck for time? Don’t you worry, there are plenty of places to grab a last minute Christmas gift. Here are a couple of ideas to get you started.


Just like Amazon, Argos has next day delivery. However, they also have same-day delivery for £5.95! So why not explore their app or website and see what you can find? You’ll be sure to find some great household gifts, tech presents or kids gifts for last-minute Christmas gifts.


Whilst ordering from Amazon isn’t the most environmentally or socially ‘woke’ option, sometimes it is the only option. Why not get a free trial of Amazon Prime, and order a whole bunch of gifts as soon as possible? You’ll be able to find loads on the website that will be delivered the next day! You can also find small businesses to support too!

Also, Amazon can be a great place to get Christmas gift ideas too, as you’ll be met with all sorts of categories. So it doesn’t matter whether you’re shopping for your best uni pal or your Nan, there’s lots to choose from.

Still stuck for ideas? Take a look at our sustainable Christmas present ideas too or range of thoughtful gifts for under£5!