Print this Cheat Sheet and make the care package your kids want.
Print the Care Package Cheat Sheet for student-approved care package items!
If you're looking for ways to cut costs on care packages, watch this video and print the cheat sheet!
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Missing your student? Buy, pack, and send the box they want with the best cheap ideas for care package success. Download the bonus cheat sheet!

Watch this video of insider tips for a winning care package on a budget!

Care Package Success

Nothing rivals the campus move-in experience. Except, maybe, hauling all that stuff home when they return in the summer.

Not only did my kids bring home giant IKEA bags full of bedding and sundries, but also many of the items I had carefully chosen for their care packages.

As a matter of fact, I stifled a gasp as I helped them transport unopened personal care items, snacks, and stress relieving games.

I had spent my precious time carefully choosing care package items I was sure they would be delighted to open. What’s more, I’d mailed those sweet gifts for a pretty penny.

Many times the postal fee was greater than the amount I’d paid for the items inside!

This year, I’m determined to beat the system. Want to know my secrets for care package success? First, print out my cheat sheet, then watch the video above. You’ll also find handy links below to many of the items I reference in the video.

Cheap Ideas

These were some of the items on my kids' care package wish list.
Believe it or not, these were some of my kids’ top picks…

When you put together a care package to send your young adult, you will feel a connection-even if they’re miles away. But, as I learned the hard way, what we think they’ll love may not hit the mark.

My 21-year-old son and I went on a Dollar Tree shopping trip just before he returned for his Junior year. I gave him my permission to be completely honest about the care package items I’d sent the previous year.

To my surprise, the tiny basketball hoop and beef jerky I thought he’d love held no appeal. Instead, he schooled me on his favorites, along with items he’d love to share with his roommates.

I’ve compiled lists of school supplies, personal items, prank toys and snacks most students would be thrilled with but we may not have considered. You can buy them at Dollar Tree stores, or at your favorite discount retailer.

Subscription Care Packages

If you would rather pay to have someone else shop for and send your care package, there are many services available. Here are two different approaches.

Please keep in mind, I haven’t used either service and can’t give a first hand recommendation. Give me your feedback if you use either service or another not mentioned here!

Campus Cube

  • $39.95 or $29.95 ea. + $5.95 SHIPPING, no monthly fee, pay per package

Me to You Box

  • 8 month subscription (one curated box/month)=$335.92

Dollar Tree Resources

Jot Shipping Labels (18 count)

Template download for shipping labels

Jot “Grown Up” Stickers

USPS Resources

Here are links to United States Postal Service helpful information:

Please share your care package success stories either by commenting below or on my Facebook page!

Don't send your student a care package without watching this video first!
Print this Cheat Sheet and make the care package your kids want.
Watch this video for practical care package ideas that will save you money.
Save a bundle on care packages with this insider tips and tricks. Free cheat sheet!