Take a look at these fun gifts to send in the mail including monthly and seasonal themes as well has punny phrases! Care package ideas for military members, care takers, college students, friends, girls, boys, and more.
Do you want to send some happy mail to someone you love? Are you looking for care package ideas that are more than just random gifts in a box? You’ve come to the right place! We’ve gathered 25+ care package ideas for nearly every occasion.
What are good things to put in a care package?
When putting together a care package, first consider the situation. Am I shopping for a holiday, a personal a way from home, someone sick, etc. Once you focus on the circumstance, ask yourself, what would I need in this situation? For example, are you creating a care package for a college student? Yes. They are away from home. What are some things they might be running out of? Is there an upcoming holiday in which I can help the decorate or be ready to celebrate. These things can all come together to create the best college care package.
Fun things to include in a care package
Something to ready
When creating a don’t feel like you have to splurge, though you can if you want to. A care package can be a small package with two or three items, or it can be an all-out party in a box type of package with everything on someone’s wish list. It’s up to you.
What should you not put in a care package?
Most package are sent via the USPS. It is important to focus on things that mailing services do not allow you to mail. Do not include knives or sharp instruments, liquids, powders, and odor-producing materials. Also make sure to ship quickly or include non perishable items. It is also wise to not include breakables, such as glass, as the a broken product could damage the contents of the entire package.
Care packages are a great way to show someone you care. Why don’t you take a look at this list of great ideas for some inspiration!
Who Do You Send Care Packages To?
While care packages are often sent to military and college students, there are so many ways to branch out to someone who may need a little cheering up from a friend, relative, or even a friendly stranger looking to brighten someone’s day.
Here are some people you may want to consider sending care packages to:
- Military – All branches need a little extra love throughout the year, particularly on holidays that they’re spending away from family.
- College Students – Send them at exam times or holidays when they can’t come home.
- Caregivers – Taking care of others is hard work. Let them know you appreciate their sacrifice.
- Nursing Home Residents – It would be especially nice to send a package to someone who doesn’t get mail or packages from family.
- Family/Friends Who’ve Moved Away – This is self-explanatory. Let them know you miss them and are thinking of them!
- Prisoners – You’ll need to check with the facility first to see which items are allowed in an inmate care package. When it comes to a care package for jail, you need to make sure you follow the guidelines strictly!
- New Moms – It’s a wonderful and stressful time, so make sure the new mama has a few things to take care of herself. Most of the gifts she’s received lately will be for baby, after all.
- Sick Friends or Family – If you know anyone who’s facing an extended stay in the hospital or recovery at home, a care package is a fantastic way to show you care.
- Someone Who’s Grieving – Grief takes a lot out of a person. You may consider things like a book of prayers for those who are grieving, gift cards to restaurants, so they don’t have to cook for a while, etc.
Themed Care Packages
You’ll find care package ideas for college students, sick friends, caregivers, sick people, stressed out moms, and more. Basically, we have something here for everyone.
Care Package for Christmas
Target does it again! So does my friend Kristin. Look at this Christmas Care Package to a college student. Target sells the Prize Punch Advent Calendar Care Package which can easily be turned into a 12 Days of Christmas Care Package for anyone. So cute. Thanks for sharing Kristin!
Blue Care Package
First of all, you don’t need a special occasion to send a care package. Send one out of the blue! There’s even a theme for that—a box of all blue items. Oreos, Rice Krispie treats, Jolly Ranchers, Cool Ranch Doritos, and Extra peppermint gum are just a few examples of what you can include. | My Inspiration Corner
Care Package Idea for College
This Just Add Water care package from my friend Kristin is brilliant! Fill the box with items that only require water to make. Tea, mashed potatoes, cups of noodles, lemonade, and oatmeal are just a few terrific examples.
Birthday Care Package
Send a birthday care package when your loved one is far away. Just because you’re miles apart doesn’t mean that you can’t celebrate like this collage care package party in a box! | Frugal Coupon Living
Birthday Care Package for Her
And here’s another option for a birthday party in a box. It includes candles, a tablecloth, plates, some party decor, and of course, a mug cake mix. | Almost Empty Nest
New Baby Care Package
How about a care package for new mom? This could be perfect for a baby shower you can’t attend. Add cute items including onesies, baby accessories, but also add practical things like baby wipes, butt paste and more! | Finding Mandee
Care Package for Sick Friend
Sending a cold and flu care package in the fall or winter is such a terrific idea! You don’t even have to wait until someone’s sick; having things like cough drops, acetaminophen, cough suppressants or expectorants, Lysol wipes, and tissue on hand is just plain smart. | The TipToe Fairy
Care Package for Best Friend
April showers may bring May flowers, but they also bring a lot of smiles when sent in a care package like this one! It includes crocheted shower poufs, body wash, lotion, nail polish, and more. | Organized 31
Care Package for Chemo Patients
Chemo Care Basket from Pink Fortitude: Dealing with cancer is a difficult task, particularly when you throw chemo treatments into the mix. A chemo care basket (or care package) will go a long way in reminding a friend or family member that you’re thinking of her or him during this time. | Pink Fortitude
Care Package for Military
Don’t forget a military care package for our service members. Creative ideas from The Military Wife and Mom including One Day Closer, One Day Stronger. When I created a package for a military friend, I include things that were not commonly available where they lived. This truly included hitting the grocery store grabbing some beloved snacks and packages of candy.
Care Package for Female College Student
Send your daughter, friend, or girlfriend in college the perfect care package. You can’t go wrong with some candy, tampons or pads, lotion, razors, and more. You may want to also include perfume, lip balm, essential oils, and other “girly” things you know she’ll like. | Organized 31
Care Package for Boyfriend
And here’s another excellent care package for guys from Organized 31! It includes beef jerky, pumpkin seeds, outdoor toys, and study supplies, but add in whatever your favorite guy likes.
Care Package for Sick
Make a get well care package for someone’ who’s sick or just had surgery. Tissues, hand sanitizer, juice, and snacks are just a few of the things you could include to make them feel a little better. | Mod Podge Rocks
Care Package for New Car
Teens, college students, or anyone with a new car will so appreciate a car care package. You can include so many fun things here, like a travel mug, ArmorAll wipes, an air freshener, a mini first aid kit, and even some snacks (that won’t melt in a hot car) to grab on the go. | Sweet Parrish Place
Small Care Package for Friend
This fall care package for a friend is so cute! The tag reads, “Thank you for bee-ing such a great friend,” along with Burt’s Bees hand cream and lip balm. It’s simple but thoughtful. | About a Mom
Care Package for College Students
Midnight Munchies strike us all at sometimes, but this is especially true for college students staying up late to study for finals. (Or students who are up late and out with friends, let’s be honest.) From Cheese Nips to JIF on the Go to Monster Energy Drinks, it has everything a starving student needs. Add trail mix, granola bars, chocolate, pretzels and more. | Creative Art Room
Themed Care Package Idea
College care package ideas are a must. Go with a theme. Send a space-themed gift basket like this one from my friend Kristin to someone you love to the moon and back! Include a space-themed shirt and some fun meals or snacks. You could even theme the snacks after space, such as Milky Way bars, Mars bars, Moon Pies, Starburst candies, Cosmic brownies, and more.
Care Package for Caregiver
Do you know someone who’s a caregiver for a terminally ill or severely disabled family member? They have hearts of gold! Let them know that you’re thinking of them with a caregiver basket with some goodies, gift cards, lotion, wipes, and drink mixes. You’ll also want to include crossword puzzles, coloring books, colored pencils, pens, Sudoku, etc. to help them pass the time during some of the quieter hours. | Cook Eat Go
Care Package for Mom
Frazzled moms everywhere would love a stress relief care package that includes a heating pad, Epsom salts for a good soak, brownie mix for a sweet treat, and a stress ball to help work off some of that stress when the moment strikes. Add face masks, socks, tea bags and other thoughtful gifts too. | Cutefetti
Care Package for Her
But don’t feel that you have to go all out on an expensive care package. It’s the thought that matters. Any friend would find this Tickled Pink package delightful! Fill it with all things pink, such as notebook, hand sanitizer, gum, nail polish, pens, etc. | Life Anchored
Yellow Care Package
Send some sunshine in a box to brighten anyone’s day. Include yellow items (yellow like the sun) such as Twinkies, apple juice, Lemonheads, and other snacks, drinks, or gift cards with yellow packaging. | Creative Art Room
College Care Package Before Exam
Encourage your college student to “stick with it” with a stick-themed care package. Include pretzel sticks, beef sticks, sticks of gum, Pocky sticks, Chapstick, etc. Anything that looks like a stick is fair game! | Michelle Paige Blogs
St Patrick’s Day Care Package
For St. Patrick’s Day, you only need to stick with the usual theme—all things green, gold, or rainbow. In addition to gum, candies, and the usual fare, send some Lucky Charms cereal and a shamrock charm or necklace for good luck. | My Inspiration Corner
Easter Care Package
Who wouldn’t love this Easter care package with eggs filled with money, yummy baked treats, and delicious candy? What a fun gift! | Wondermom Wannabe
Halloween Care Package
Give someone a Spook-tacular Halloween surprise by sending an unexpected care package. This one from Kristin reads, “We Miss You a Skele-ton.” Isn’t that adorable? There are so many great Halloween snacks and candies that you can easily find some to go with the theme, but don’t forget a shirt and/or mask just in case your recipient would like to dress up for the occasion.
October Care Package
Here’s another idea for Halloween in a box! Include caramel apples, candy corn, Pop Rocks, and all your other Halloween favorites. | Smashed Peas and Carrots
Christmas Care Package
College students or anyone who just moved out on their own in the past year could probably use a holiday decorating care package with a candy wreath, ribbon, jingle bells, a decorative wreath, and a few other bits and bobs to make a room look special. Don’t forget to add some cards from family and friends as a surprise. | Organized 31
Winter Care Package
We miss you snow much! How adorable is that message from Kristin for a Christmas or winter-themed care package?
What to Put Inside Care Packages
Snacks (popcorn, chips, crackers, cookies, nuts, protein bars, jerky, dried fruit)
Powdered drink mixes
Gum or mints
Books and bookmarks
Soap or body wash
Shampoo and conditioner
Meds like acetaminophen or cough drops for Get Well packages
Laundry detergent pods (for college kids)
Homemade baked goods
Easy prep foods
Small, inexpensive toys for kids
Nail polish or manicure sets
Scarves/hats/gloves in winter
Entertainment books like Sudoku, crosswords, word searches, adult coloring books, etc.
There’s so much more you could include, but those items will get you started with some fantastic care package ideas.
Other Care Package Tips
Here are a few more tips to make your care packages extra-special.
- Wrap each item individually if it’s a package full of gifts, especially for Christmas or birthdays.
- If you don’t want to wrap each item, adding printable tags with fun notes makes each piece a little more thoughtful. | Skip to My Lou
- Try to create a theme around the snacks, the color, or the decor for the care package box.
- Adhere to any guidelines that the organization or facility may have for incoming care packages.
- Include a handwritten note—it’s just more personal that way!
Where Can I Buy Care Packages?
If crafting care packages is not your forte, it’s okay. There are plenty of places where you can buy care packages. Look on Etsy for a number of Care Package ideas, many that ship quickly and directly to the receiver!
Are you sending a care package to someone you love? Which one will you make?
Updated. Originally published 5/3/2020.
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