With a thousand other things going on, Christmas really snuck up on me this year. Luckily, we’ve still got time. Although I do wish Christmas was here already (vacay is much needed), I’m grateful for a couple weeks to throw together my last minute gift purchases. With just about one week left to ship in time for Christmas, I’ve put together my best tips for creating the perfect gift. (Bonus tip: most online stores are shipping in time for Christmas as long as you purchase before 12/18!)
Shop the Major Stores (Online)
If you’ve been anywhere near a mall lately, you know that they are jam-packed with other people who’ve waited until the last minute to buy their presents. If I’m not shopping early in the season (read: November), then I try to stay away from the mall at all costs. No one likes to park in the overflow parking lot, then walk 100 yards to the mall, then be blasted with the heated A/C inside the mall. No one. Shopping online means you get to do it from bed or during your lunch break, you often save even more money and you don’t have to deal with nasty, Grinch attitudes in person. Pro Tip: most online stores are guaranteeing Christmas shipping if you purchase by 12/18, so get on it!
Stick to First Word Interests
My #1 gift tip is to think about your gift recipient – now what was the very first word that came to mind? When you think of your friend, what “defines” them to you? Is it her obsession with pugs? Is she a fitness fanatic? Does he have a passion for vintage cars? Using the “first to come to mind” test, you’ve got a great chance at picking an item that will be relevant to your recipient. Pro Tip: Make sure you’re thinking outside of the box. They love to run? Don’t buy them a pair of running shoes, buy them a membership to your local run club.
Curate a Themed “Basket”
When I don’t know someone very well or I want an elaborate gift, I’ll create a curated basket based on their interests. If they love going to the movies, gift them a movie-night-in box complete with Netflix gift card, popcorn, theatre candy boxes and some comfy slippers. If they love coffee shops, gift them a cute mug, coffee syrup, whipped cream and a boutique package of coffee beans. This gift works super well for co-workers and in-laws too! Pro Tip: It can be hard to find themed items at local stores. To save time (Prime for the win) shop Amazon!
Gift Experiences, Not Tangible Items
I’m pretty sure there’s some quote out there about how experiences are better than things. I would agree 65% of the time. Some people just have everything they’d ever need, and if they don’t, then they buy it for themselves. These are the hardest people to shop for (examples: my dad and my fiancé). So instead of buying them one more thing to add to their shelf, buy an experience that you both can share. Whether this is a weekend trip or an all-expenses paid behind the scenes tour, you’ll have more fun (and great memories) sharing the day together than a watch or iPad could provide. Pro Tip: Solo experiences are fun and less expensive, but being able to gift an item that you can enjoy too makes it all the more worth it!
Last Minute Gift Ideas
Still stumped? Browse the following for my favorite last minute gift ideas and stocking stuffers!