5 Fun and Frugal Last Minute Christmas Gifts
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It’s not too late to still get a great Christmas gift for your loved one on a budget. There are many last minute Christmas gifts that will make anyone on your list happy. With that in mind, I thought I’d share some last minute Christmas gift ideas – several of which I’ve used in the past.
If you’ve waited around to buy Christmas gifts then the time to act on getting that Christmas gift is now. Don’t panic, you want to stick to your budget. You can still be frugal and get last minute Christmas gifts that will make both your wallet and the person you’re shopping for happy.
I’ve written about my disdain for going out shopping at this time of year, and thankfully there’s several ways a person like me can still buy a gift from the convenience of your own house through sites like Amazon.
While some of the gifts might require you to actually go out and fight the crowds, they’ll still score you some great last minute Christmas gifts.
This list is not exhaustive, but should provide you some ideas on what you can possibly purchase. As an aside, if you’re looking for specific ideas, I’ve also written on great Christmas gift ideas for your wife if you need help coming up with other ideas. 🙂
Gift Cards Make Great Last Minute Christmas Gifts
I know for some a gift card shows you don’t care about the person – though I’d beg to differ. Part of the reason that gift cards make great last minute Christmas gifts is they can be used on what the person wants and you can get them in many places.
You can buy them online or in store. I know shipping is an issue at this time of the year and if you’re like me you won’t want to pay an exorbitant price to ship with two day shipping but there is a solution.
Many online retailers now offer you the choice to buy an electronic gift card and it gets delivered to the recipient’s email inbox. If that’s not an option, you can even get a gift card at your local grocery store.
My gift card go-to is Gift Certificates.com as they have thousands of retailers to choose from or you can get the recipient a “Super Certificate” that allows them to choose where they want the gift card from.
I also like to buy American Express gift cards as they work same as cash and the person can use it however they see fit.
Experiences make good gifts if you’d rather not give a gift card. LivingSocial is a great option to get a gift that won’t bust your budget.
My other favorite option is buying an Amazon Gift Card as they can be sent via email and can be used on virtually anything!
That’s also not to mention that you can use any remaining balance you have on anything you want with the Amazon option as opposed to being limited like you would with a department store card.
Speaking of Amazon, if Amazon is your go-to for the holiday shopping season, make sure to check out these money saving Amazon hacks before you shop. I love shopping on Amazon as it helps me avoid the crowds so I’m always looking for ways to save money on Amazon.
If you’re looking for last minute Christmas gift ideas, look no further than coffee as a possible Christmas gift. If you live with or are related to a coffee lover, then brew up some joy for them with the gift of coffee.
Don’t limit yourself to just coffee; give a travel or coffee mug or even a gift card to your local coffee shop.
My wife loves coffee and if I am in the pinch for some last minute Christmas gifts than I need look no further than a coffee gift card. You’d think I bought her a diamond with how much she loves them.
**Check out the Last Minute Deals section at Amazon for more great last minute gift ideas!!**
If you’re thinking of coffee as an option, a bag of Peet’s coffee is a good choice and one my wife always enjoys.
If the recipient doesn’t have a coffee grinder this one from Epica has worked well for our needs over the years.
Is your loved one not a coffee fan, but loves tea? This gift set from Tea Forte has been a big hit with my wife and other family members that love tea.
**Related: If you’re still looking for a gift for that child in your life, check out my Christmas gift ideas for kids post – each one is $25 or less!**
Since I’m not a fan of Christmas shopping I look for gifts that make it easy on me but also get me several gifts in one. That’s where a gift set comes in for last minute Christmas gifts. You can either make one on your own like with the coffee above, or get one that is pre-made.
If you’re looking for Christmas gift ideas for your husband then one to consider is this hot sauce gift set from Zombie Cajun. If your husband loves hot sauce this is a great set that provides good variety. It looks great to me and something I’ve asked my wife for. 🙂
If you’re looking for that special woman in your life then consider this Burt’s Bees Essential Everyday Beauty Kit. I’ve bought it for my wife in the past and she loved it.
digital photo frame
If you’re like my family then you have a lot of pictures on your phone but have dozens you’d love to display around the house, That is where a digital picture frame comes in as one of the last minute Christmas gifts you might want to consider.
They can vary wildly in price, though have found the ViewSonic 8-inch Digital Photo Frame to be of good value for what you get.
We love ours as it allows us to display a number of pictures of our kids without having to pick just one. If you use Amazon much, this can be a great last minute Christmas idea for the photo lover in your life.
If you find the ViewSonic not to meet your needs, here are some of the top rated digital photo frames on Amazon that might fit your needs.
amazon fire tv stick
The Fire TV Stick is a great last minute Christmas gift idea for the tech person in your life. This is especially the case if they’ve cut cable recently.
At just $39 the Amazon Fire TV Stick offers a simple way to stream content to your TV. You can get content from a number of apps like HBO NOW, Netflix, ESPN and many more.
If the recipient wants something a little more robust, the Amazon Fire TV is good option to consider as it provides even more content options for the cord cutter, especially when you pair it with the Amazon Echo.
The Amazon Echo Dot is a great budget option vs. the standard Echo, without losing a lot of the features. If you have Amazon Prime, either make good last minute Christmas gifts as you can have it within two days.
It’s also important not to overlook potential savings on your Christmas shopping needs. You can take advantage in drops in prices from your online shopping with Paribus. Paribus compares prices against what you paid to find rebate opportunities.
They also work with Amazon on shipping fees if no delivery attempt was made by the guaranteed delivery date.
There are many last minute Christmas gifts you can buy that will not bust your budget and still leave the recipient happy. Are you done with your Christmas shopping, or will be looking for some last minute Christmas gifts yourself?
John is the founder of Frugal Rules, a dad, husband and veteran of the financial services industry whose writing has been featured in Forbes, CNBC, Yahoo Finance and more.
Passionate about helping people learn from his mistakes, John shares financial tools and tips to help you enjoy the freedom that comes from living frugally. One of his favorite tools is Personal Capital , which he used to plan for retirement and keep track of his finances in less than 15 minutes each month.
Another one of John's passions is helping people save $80 per month by axing their expensive cable subscriptions and replacing them with more affordable ones, like Hulu with Live TV.
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