Graduation Gift Ideas

A graduation ceremony or commencement is a perfect time to honor someone important in your life. You can do that by giving them special gifts that represent how happy and proud you are of them.

Interestingly, the word commencement means “the time when something begins.” Whether it is graduation from high school, college, or even a master’s program, that someone close to your heart is about to face new beginnings and new opportunities.

Graduation serves a milestone as it reflects perseverance and hard work. So, students who are about to graduate deserve recognition. Before they enter their next journey, it’s a nice idea to give them graduation gifts.

In this post, you’ll get to know about graduation gift etiquette and various gift ideas.

When Are Graduation Gifts Appropriate?

As graduation season gets closer, don’t be surprised to receive a number of graduation announcements or graduation party invitations.

Receiving a graduation announcement or party invitation does not necessarily mean a gift is expected of you. Announcements are a way of sharing exciting news to everyone. While you are not obliged to send a gift, you may choose to do so.

In case you are invited to attend the commencement ceremony or graduation party, you have to bring a gift together with a graduation card. If you can’t make it to the ceremony or party, you may still be able to send your gift or card via mail.

Being invited to a graduation celebration means you are important to the host. Whether it’s a small or big gift, acknowledge that invitation with a gift.

If you are unsure which gift to send, consider the factors below:

  • Type of Graduation and the Degree of Achievement
  • Relationship with the Honoree
  • Needs of the Graduate

When Is the Best Time to Send Graduation Gifts?

Don’t worry about the time to send a graduation gift because there are no set rules for this. After receiving the announcement, you can send the gift anytime. Nevertheless, the sooner you send it, the better. In case you did not receive a graduation announcement or invitation, but you want to honor the accomplishments of the graduate, then feel free to send a gift.

What Are the Top Graduation Gift Ideas?

Now, it’s time to reveal the popular graduation gifts you can try. Considering the factors when choosing a graduation gift above, you can choose from the following gift ideas. Remember that no matter what the price or size of the gift is, it’s the thought of acknowledging the achievements of the graduate that really counts.

Flowers: Lei or Bouquet

Flowers also mean “to grow in a successful way.” That’s what makes them perfect graduation gifts.

Expensive gifts are not necessary as long as you want to let the graduate know how proud and happy you are. Traditionally, flowers serve as a gift to many of life’s celebrations and occasions. So, graduation celebrations are also a perfect time to splurge graduates with flowers.

Before the scheduled commencement ceremony, you can give a flower to the graduate in the form of a lei. In case you plan to give a flower after a ceremony, a bouquet of flowers is ideal. Whether you will be there in-person or not, beautiful bouquets are among the easiest ways to celebrate the graduate’s milestone.

When it comes to the variety of flowers, orchids, roses, and carnations are the top flower bouquets for graduation. You can also go for flowers that will match the colors of the school or the honoree’s favorite flowers. Besides, you can try flowers that are great for keepsakes. These flowers can be saved between the photo albums’ pages when dried.

Personalized Items

There are plenty of personalized gifts for graduation to choose from.

For high school graduates who are about to enter the college life and need to move away from their home to have a space of their own, you can give them a personalized gift that can make their dorm feel like home. As for the college graduates who are about to enter the working world, you can send them gifts that can remind them of the memories of their life as a student.

Photo albums can be a classic graduation gift, but its meaning remains incomparable. Since the graduates are going to make countless memories of their new adventures, you can help them keep track of them with a photo book. While they may have their photos on their smartphones or social media accounts, having a place for storing their favorite photos in printer form will be extra special.

Other than desk plaques, home decorating pieces, and custom photo books, you can try more personalized gifts like 3d crystal printing items. With 3d printing gift ideas, it’s a lot easier to keep the memories alive. You can go for 3d crystal picture cube, crystal portrait, wine stopper crystal, or 3d photo crystal key chains.


Another common graduation gift is money. Most graduates prefer money as a gift as they can use it in starting their next journey in life.

You may simply give cash ranging from $20-$100 if you are not too close to the graduate. If you have a close relationship with the graduate, then you can give a larger amount of monetary gifts.

You can add a creative touch with your cash, other than slipping the cash into the graduation card. You can try the following graduation money gift ideas:

  • Money bouquet (can be mixed with flowers)
  • Money lei
  • Money calendar (attach money to each month)
  • Money tree


When you want to send a practical or trendy graduation gift, make sure that the gift is useful to the honoree. Besides, it should represent sincerity and a heartfelt message of how happy you are for them. The gifts should remind them of the adventures and dreams that lie ahead.

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