Best Toy Subscription Boxes for Kids (or for Adults, Young at Heart)

By on April 24, 2017

best toy subscription boxes

Warmer weather is a welcome change as winter morphs into spring. But for parents, the excitement over spring’s arrival can be short-lived, because it means summer vacation is just around the corner. Hearing your kids tell you how bored they are a day or two after school lets out can end up providing permanent background noise for the summer. However, we can help you jump ahead of your kids’ boredom with some surprises in the mail. The best toy subscription boxes will give your kids something to look forward to each month this summer, while providing fun toys and activities that’ll chase the boredom away.

We’ve compiled a list of the five best toy subscription box options that involve a variety of activities and age levels, so you hopefully can find the right one for your kids this summer! (And these subscription boxes are so fun that you’ll probably end up keeping the boxes coming once school starts again.)

If you’d like to learn more about other types of subscription boxes, check out these articles:

Amazon STEM Club – Ages 3-13

Because the Amazon STEM club toy box subscription offers three different options based on the age of the children, it’s one of our favorite subscription choices. There are different boxes for children aged 3-4, aged 5-7, and aged 8-13. Certainly, you can use different subscription box providers for kids of different ages, but it may be easier to just stick with one provider.

STEM is short for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, so the Amazon STEM Club looks to challenge children educationally with its toys and activities, while trying to make science fun.

You’ll be able to cancel your subscription at any time, which is another nice feature, as you aren’t locked into receiving a minimum number of boxes. So if you’re only looking for something for the summer, you can cancel the boxes in September. However, understand that once you sign up for the service, the boxes will arrive automatically every month — and you’ll be charged — until you cancel. (This is the case with all of these boxes.)

Sample Boxes

  • 3-4 year olds: Plastic drill toy with table and pattern cards (think Lite-Brite with plastic screws)
  • 5-7 year olds: Desk of cards with individual experiment ideas and a notebook for recording results
  • 8-13 year olds: Science kit with test tubes, heat-sensitive paper, and ingredients for experiments

Check Price on Amazon

Groovy Lab in a Box – Ages 8 and Up

Groovy lab in a box review

Groovy Lab in a Box offers science themed toys and experiment ideas, focused on STEM.

We really appreciate that Groovy Lab in a Box provides numerous options for purchasing the box. You can select from monthly, bi-monthly, or single-occurrence gift boxes. And you’ll save a bit by committing to a longer time frame on the subscription.

Groovy Lab in a Box is aimed at children ages 8 and older.

Sample Box

  • Directions and equipment for building a portable lantern out of ice

Check Options at Groovy Lab in a Box

Kiwi Crate – Ages Newborn-16

Kiwi Crate review

Kiwi Crate offers a variety of boxes aimed at different age groups, which is helpful if you have more than one child and want to deal with just one subscription. Kiwi takes the STEM idea described above and goes one step further by adding Art to make it STEAM.

As part of the some of the subscription boxes, you’ll also receive a copy of an age-appropriate magazine, which has additional activities related to that month’s theme.

Kiwi Crate subscriptions are able to be canceled at any time. You can save a bit of money by committing to a longer subscription period, or you can select a month by month subscription.

Sample Box

  • 0-2 year olds: Called Cricket Crate, this box includes simple toys and board books
  • 3-4 year olds: Called Koala Crate, toys and art supplies to create costumes and simple toys
  • 5-8 year olds: Called Kiwi Crate, directions and supplies for experiments related to art, science, and engineering
  • 9-16 year olds: Called Doodle Crate, includes ingredients and instructions for completing various art and design projects
  • 9-16 year olds: Called Tinker Crate, includes components and instructions for completing various science and engineering projects

Check Options at Kiwi Crate

Loot Crate – Ages 10 and Up

Loot Crate review

Loot Crate is aimed at fans of pop culture, gamers, and geeks, offering collectibles, t-shirts, and gaming related items.

You’ll find several different types of boxes with Loot Crate, including monthly subscription options focused on basic geek-dom, Anime, gaming, and clothing. There are even partner-affiliated crates for franchises like Halo, Firefly, WWE, and Sanrio.

Sample Box

  • Comic, graphic novel, collectible pin, coffee mug, and t-shirt

Check Options at Loot Crate

Reading Bug Box – Ages Newborn-13

When selecting a subscription to Reading Bug Box, you will be able to pick the child’s age, gender, and reading interests, and the Reading Bug Box folks will put together an individualized gift box for your child, which is a nice feature. It’s not a one-size-fits-all approach, as most other subscription box providers use.

You can select month to month subscriptions, or you can save a bit by committing to a longer subscription. You also can select gift subscriptions for teachers, and the boxes’ contents will be geared toward a particular grade level.

Sample Box

  • Two to three age-appropriate books with some extra gifts

Check Options at Reading Bug Box

Bonus Pick – Candy Club – All Ages

Not all of us are perfect parents. So if you’re looking for something a little less educational and a little more delicious, consider the Candy Club subscription box. (And if your kids can’t finish a particular candy that is in the box, well, you may have to help them.)

You can select a month to month subscription, or you can save a bit by committing to a six- or 12-month subscription. And you can add extra jars of candies for a little extra cost.

Sure, you could go to your local grocery store and pick bulk candies that you’re sure you’ll like and probably save some money. But it can be fun to try some new candies through the Candy Club subscription box.

Sample Box

  • Three jars of premium candies, along with a bonus type of candy

Check Options at Candy Club

One final note about these best kids subscription boxes: The age ranges provided by the subscription box providers are best estimates. Your 7-year-old child may be completely bored with a box aimed at ages 5-8. And some boxes aimed at ages 3-4 may have small pieces that could be dangerous for young children who like to put small objects in their mouths.

So take the recommended age ranges as just that — recommendations.

About Kyle Schurman

Having a tech background as a writer makes me the go-to source when family members' devices don't work. Fortunately, I'm more skilled at helping solve readers' problems through writing than trying to fix my parents' printer over the phone.

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