Compared to the lot of students now, my student life was a doddle. Tuition fees were paid for, overdrafts were given out like sweets and you could have a decent night out for a tenner (aka a brown beer voucher). Those three years at university were among the best of my life.


But who’d be a student now? Prohibitive tuition fees can leave students in extreme debt, and thanks to a highly competitive job market these days there’s no guarantee of a job at the end of it. If there’s a student in your life – what can you do to make their life that bit easier?

Useful gifts can be a great way to support students or those taking a gap year before university. When I kicked off my gap year with a happy summer holiday in Spain, my brother bought me single trip holiday insurance. He also bought me a “comedy” sombrero – but he’s always had a dodgy sense of humour. It saved me a bit of cash (the insurance, not the hat) and was a thoughtful and practical present.

Other gift ideas could include useful stuff like books from their reading list or an eBook device so they can download the books they need. Give them some money towards a laptop or club together with other family members or friends to buy one.

Think of their daily needs – a helping hand is always appreciated. Have you thought about doing an online shop for them once a month to make sure they’re not surviving on Pot Noodles and crisps alone? Buy them a load of stationery, pens and pencils. We may live in an age of touch screens but even those at one with technology need to write things down and print stuff off occasionally! You’d be surprised what a difference a bit of a helping hand can make.