Exchange Student

8 Cool Gifts for Exchange Students

If you’ve ever lived abroad, you know how stressful it can be to feel lonely and out of place in the beginning, and how challenging it is at the end when you have to say goodbye to the good friends you’ve made and places you’ve considered home. This is exactly what exchange students on your campus are facing too, and it is wonderful that you are thinking about them! These cool gifts for exchange students can be given for a variety of occasions – welcome gifts, birthday presents, going away mementos, or even “just because.”

Cool gifts for exchange students 

1. A State Necklace

State Necklace

Did you guys take a road trip to all your favorite places in your state? Don’t let her forget it! She will love this 14K gold plated state pendant necklace that she can wear to remember her “second home” in the USA. The necklace is both delicate and stylish, has a 16-18 inch one-size-fits-most chain, and is a great accessory for casual wear. This is a thoughtful gift for a foreign exchange student who will soon be heading back to her home country.

2. America: The Cookbook

America: The Cookbook

Do you ever really get to know a place without knowing its FOOD?? Definitely not. Well this gift idea for foreign exchange students goes even further – not only introducing them to staple American foods, but also letting them try their hand at cooking too! Whether it’s a welcome gift that you can explore in the kitchen together throughout the year, a birthday gift for your foodie friend, or a sayonara gift they can take home to impress their fam, this 800 recipe cookbook is a delish delight.

3. A Netflix Gift Card

Netflix Gift Cards

When you need a study break but it’s too rainy/snowy/humid (insert excuse here) to go outside, Netflix comes to the rescue! Not only is a Netflix gift card a cool gift for foreign exchange students because of its entertainment value, Netflix also offers them low-pressure practice with the English language and a spectrum of historical, political, and cultural movies that can add to their understanding of our great ol’ country. It’s also a top gift idea for Chinese exchange students, since Netflix has yet to be available in China. They might already have a list made of movies they plan to watch!  

4. Peanut Butter & Jelly Kits

Peanut Butter and Grape Jelly Squeeze Packs

You mean, peanut butter and jelly ISN’T a classic combo around the world?! We know. It’s always a surprise the first time you find out your favorite childhood sandwich isn’t a staple in other countries. But that’s why this going away gift idea for foreign exchange students is so necessary. If they’ve come to enjoy and indulge in the gooey combo we grew up on, then you better send them off with their own supply. Especially because they definitely won’t find this brand of health-freaks approved, natural ingredient PB&J pouches they can take on the go.

5. Scratch-Off Map of the United States

Scratch Off United States Map

No exchange student joins an American college without wanting to get some travelling done too. This detailed, scratch-off USA map poster ranks high among welcome gifts for exchange students. The 17 by 24 inch map comes with its own bucket list to kick-start planning. The map then turns into a colorful piece of art as they use the scratch tool, push pins, and stickers to track their travels. This is one gift they won’t leave the US without.

6. National Parks Pass

National Parks Pass

If you live in California, Alaska, Utah, or Colorado (or any neighboring state), a unique gift idea for foreign exchange students is a pass to the many National Parks you have at your disposal. A National Parks pass not only opens the door to US’s 62 National Parks, but also to national wildlife refuges and national forests and grasslands. The perks extend to up to one carload or 3 additional people along with the pass holder. This is particularly a great German exchange student gift idea, so they can compare the natural wonders of the US to the natural wonders of their home.

7. A Relevant Wild Sam Travel Guide (Or Set)

Wildsam Field Guides Series Book Series

Living in or near-to a major US city? Planning a trip to take the new exchange students for an out of state adventure? With the tagline “Feel at home wherever you go,” a Wild Sam Field Guide is a cool gift for exchange students any time of the year. It’s not your standard tourist guide, but a way to delve into a city’s secrets and soul, find the hotspots your grandparents went to, and enjoy with your entire group.

8. A Photo Frame—Featuring Your Favorite Memories!

Customizable Letter Board with 8-Opening Photo Collage

Saying goodbye is never easy, but photos of memories can bring smiles to take the pain away. This 19 by 17 inch collage frame contains one central letter board surrounded by 8 individual photo frames of different sizes. 144 letters and numbers are included to customize the letter board with your own unique message. A thoughtful gift for a foreign exchange student, plus lightweight so it can travel back home. (Note that it is made of plastic and a few reviews have been mixed about quality.)

Shop thoughtful gifts for a foreign exchange student!

Whether saying “welcome!” or “good bye!” or “we’re so glad to have you here!” – a foreign exchange student will absolutely love the kindness and hospitality shown to her through these gifts. If some of these cool gifts for exchange students end up being a few of your own favorite items, we get that, too 😉

Here’s a recap of our cool gifts for exchange students!

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