What to give a Boston-bound individual?
May 20, 2012 4:32 PM   Subscribe

Boston-specific (or not) graduation gift?

We have a young man who is graduating high school and will be attending university in Boston. I *think* we have some of the gifts settled but would like suggestions for gifts that are Boston-specific. What would be especially useful to him? Gift certificates are fine; he likes jazz. He doesn't wear a watch; he's not getting a car. Non-Boston ideas also welcome.
posted by Morrigan to Shopping (11 answers total)
Not sure what youR price range is, what his interests are aside from jazz, or where in Boston he'll be, but something like a membership to the New England Aquarium or Coolidge Corner Theater might be nice. On the more practical side of things, money for a T pass, food (a gift certificate for something near campus, probably), or school books would always have been welcome when I was an undergrad.
posted by divisjm at 4:43 PM on May 20, 2012

I see you're from Virginia. If he is from a non-northern climate, how about a gift certificate to a place like REI? Boston gets cold(er than D.C.), and I knew kids in college who seemed to be new to the idea of things like gloves and hats.
posted by dixiecupdrinking at 4:53 PM on May 20, 2012 [1 favorite]

Get him a gift certificate to the coffee shop nearest campus (if he likes coffee) or to an outdoor retailer that has a store near his school.
posted by MadamM at 5:01 PM on May 20, 2012

If he's not familiar with the Boston area, I highly recommend the Not For Tourists guide to Boston. I've used the New York, Brooklyn, and DC versions, and in addition to providing basic info on transportation, parks, museums, restaurants, etc., they're invaluable for finding things like grocery stores, post offices, and places to study.

Also seconding the coffee shop and outdoor retailer gift certificate ideas (REI and EMS both have stores in the area).
posted by rebekah at 5:22 PM on May 20, 2012 [1 favorite]

I'm a grad student in Boston, I also attended college in the area.

If you're looking for a really fabulous gift, how about a sturdy city bike with an internal hub gear, and really high quality rain gear?

You could get him a gift certificate to MixMenu or one of the other online food ordering sites. I was so incredibly busy in college that I almost never had time to go out for dinner, and even on the few occasions when I had time, I couldn't really afford it. Yeah, it's nicer to go out to a nice restaurant than to get delivery, but if you know you're staying up until 4 working on a project, delivery is pretty fantastic.
posted by Cygnet at 5:24 PM on May 20, 2012

For a jazz lover, perhaps a gift card at Regattabar. It's a classy jazz place with great music and sound and it's always all ages. You'll have to make sure that giftcard link is legit, though.
posted by shushufindi at 5:37 PM on May 20, 2012

Water-proof boots. Rain jacket. Down jacket. Hats, gloves, scarves. Warm sweaters. Fleece socks.

Did I mention just how much I love Boston winters? :)
posted by Shusha at 6:20 PM on May 20, 2012

A Zipcar membership, for those days when he really needs to get somewhere.
posted by snickerdoodle at 6:26 PM on May 20, 2012 [3 favorites]

Umbrella and scarf. Two things I never really used before moving here that are now necessities.

A Red Sox cap is also Boston specific, yet ubiquitous.

Can you tell us which school he'll be attending? That might help us with coffee shop suggestions and such (for example - Regattabar will be great if he goes to Harvard and not out of reach for MIT, but a pain to get to from Northeastern.)
posted by maryr at 6:43 PM on May 20, 2012

It's not super-awesome, but I would have been miserable in my dorm without my electric blanket this year. Saved my life in the winter (and this past winter was MILD). Seconding good rain shoes (or a gift certificate to such a place). snickerdoodle's suggestion of Zipcar membership is also an awesome idea.
posted by smirkette at 8:32 PM on May 20, 2012

Get him a T pass with money already loaded on it.
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 5:15 AM on May 21, 2012

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