The holidays are stressful enough without you having to worry about finding the right gifts for everyone on your list. We all have friends or family members who are difficult to shop for. But there are ways to find the perfect presents without causing too much anxiety (or creating a drain on your bank account)! Here are five ideas to help guide you in your gift-giving process.
1. Identify their interests.
One of the best ways to think of a present for someone is to come up with a list of their favorite things. You can identify how they like to spend their time, what hobbies they enjoy, or what they’re always gabbing about. If your BFF is obsessed with beauty products, she’ll love a subscription to FabFitFun (where she can get monthly packages of cosmetics and wellness items.) Maybe your cousin can’t stop talking about his love for “Doctor Who.” Then his favorite Christmas gift will definitely be a Doctor t-shirt from Hot Topic. This tactic is a surefire way to show people that you pay attention to them, so your gift will always be appreciated.
2. Don’t just pick items you would like.
Most novice gift givers make the major mistake of giving someone a gift they’d love to receive themselves – but not necessarily one anyone else would be into. You might be obsessed with your Wireless PS3 Controller from MiniInTheBox, but that doesn’t mean your non-gamer girlfriend will be feeling it. Unless you have totally similar tastes as the person you’re buying for, think less about your own preferences and more about theirs.
3. Keep your ears open for hints.
The good thing is that people are constantly dropping hints about presents they’d like. As long as you pay attention, you’re bound to pick up some ideas. Your aunt might mention she loves a good red wine. Head to Proflowers to pick up a gourmet basket complete with delicious snacks and vino. You should also listen closely when your friends or family compliment gifts they see other people getting.
4. Check out their music or DVD collection.
If you’re struggling with what to buy a specific person, another way to get some ideas is to take a look at their music or DVD collections. Even if your mom is super hard to shop for, you might notice she has a thing for Stevie Nicks. Amazon has tons of awesome box sets (like the Fleetwood Mac “Rumors” Deluxe Edition). If you search your uncle’s DVDs to find he has an incomplete collection of “Breaking Bad” episodes, you’ll know he’d go crazy for the complete series on Blu-ray.
5. Think outside the box.
Some of the best gifts are the non-traditional ones. Instead of giving a very impersonal gift card or holiday sweater, try coming up with ideas that are a little more unique. Maybe your dad would love a trip to Vegas for the weekend. You can search Expedia for great bargains on everything from flights and hotels to car rentals and activities. Another great gift that’s outside the box is a subscription to Ancestry.com. Your family will love the chance to research their heritage, and you’ll look totally thoughtful for thinking of it!
Don’t fall into the trap of getting people something unoriginal. Make your present their favorite of the year, but don’t forget to check out CouponPal to ensure you’re getting the best deals possible! Happy shopping!