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Grads Make Top Gift Picks, and Caffeine is No. 1

This year, an estimated 3.3 million seniors will graduate from high school, and many will head to college come fall. Odds are pretty good that you’ll be making the rounds of grad parties with gift in hand sometime soon.

Americans spent nearly $4.8 billion on graduation gifts in 2015, with the average present costing $100 or more. No doubt you’ll want to give that special grad something he or she will appreciate and put to good use.

But what?

To help you, Best Buy went straight to the source, asking more than 500 high school grads what they want and what they’ll use these gifts for. Their top-two choices are no-brainers: money (82 percent) and gift cards (53 percent). Ranking third is tech (39 percent).

And get ready for this: Not only did single-serve coffeemakers and compact refrigerators take the top two spots on their lists, but grads have dropped any pretense that their needs are purely academic. More than 80 percent of them say they plan to use computers, tablets and TVs for personal entertainment.

But don’t worry parents, it’s not all fun and games. Half of the top six favorites are laptops or computers – everyone needs a good computer for school right? And three-fourths of grads say they plan to use their new technology to take notes and write papers for classes.

Here are new grads’ top six gift picks this year:

  1. 1. Keurig coffeemaker
  2. 2. Compact Refrigerator
  3. 3. MacBook Air
  4. 4. Microsoft Surface Book
  5. 5. iMac
  6. 6. Samsung smart HDTV                                             

You can find more inspiration on graduation gifts at www.bestbuy.com/giftideas.

And if you decide to give tech to your grad this year, remember that select gadgets come with free setup by Geek Squad, a $39.99 value. When you make a qualifying purchase, just give your grad the instructions you receive for setting up a one-on-one appointment with a Geek Squad Agent. Visit BestBuy.com/FreeSetup for the list of devices that qualify.


The Best Buy 2016 Grad Top Tech survey was conducted April 8– April 18, 2016 by Research Now and Best Buy Enterprise Research among a nationally representative sample of 512 recent high school graduates and college students finishing their freshman year ages 18-24. The margin of error is +/- 3.6%.