Custom Printed Birthday Book
Eighteen is the age a person becomes an adult, so it seems fitting to collect all those old photographs and memories from childhood and package them into a beautiful custom-bound book. It’ll be the perfect gift to show that special someone someday.
Lots of people have let a kid scratch off a lottery ticket, but kids can’t actually claim the money, of course. Celebrate the legal right to make dubious gambling decisions by giving them a selection of lottery tickets that probably won’t win. Or they just might! It could happen!
Remind them of how tiny they are, how insignificant their mere 18 Earth years is compared to the glory of the universe and its countless eons with this lovely set of tumblers emblazoned with Hubble and Spitzer space telescope images of majestic nebulae.
Put away childish things, then seal them up into an air and water tight steel container, dig a hole deep into the ground and bury them under a sidewalk. Put a plaque nearby or something like that, wait 82 years, and then have their 100 year old self return to open an archive of their childhood. No big deal.
Give them a chance to get some skin in the game with a gift of stock. The investment does not have to be large, as fractional shares of top companies can be bought and sold just like full shares, just enough to cultivate an interest in investing that will serve them well later on.
Metal Balloon Dog Sculpture - 18th birthday parties tend not to feature clowns entertaining the kids who attend, but that’s no reason to think an 18 year-old doesn’t like balloon animals. Acknowledge that they’re still a kid at heart and respect their new adult sophistication with this fine-art version of the classic balloon dog.
All the fine ideas on this page notwithstanding, nobody really knows what anyone wants, much less someone turning 18. So put the power in their hands by taking them on a whirlwind shopping spree at their favorite stores. You’re going to spend a little more, but at least it will be fun instead of nerve wracking.
Even if a person on the cusp of adulthood knows exactly what they want to do when they grow up, they might still have no idea how to actually get there. Enter the career coach. This 18th birthday gift will whip them into shape for the world of work, and teach them skills that will last a lifetime.
This is a tough one, because you have to take the month into account. A piece of garnet jewelry (January) is one thing, but are you sure you want to buy someone diamonds (April) for their 18th birthday? It’s fine to do that, obviously, but we can see why you’d think twice.