Money is the standard solution for last minute gifts, or last-second-I-totally-forgot gifts. Since money is actually a really great gift, it works out every time. You can disguise the fact that you almost dropped the ball by doing some “quick” origami and making a nice arrangement.
Here’s a gift you can give at the very last minute that will leave them feeling like they owe you one. Offer to do someone’s chores or yard work for an entire work day. Go all out and let them see you bust your hump. They deserve it, and so do you - you almost forgot to get them a gift after all.
If procrastination is winning the gift shopping battle, you can emerge victorious by running down to your local art, science, or history museum to grab a gift membership. It will seem like something that you put a lot of thought into, finding a gift that enriches their lives, exposes them to new cultures, and all that junk.
When traveling, some people really like an element of predictability to anchor their experience in an unfamiliar place. With a recognizable name like Hilton, you know exactly what to expect. Unfortunately, that name and that predictability come at a premium. You can help take the sting out of a vacation’s most expensive element by picking up the tab ahead of time.
A Costco membership can save someone a lot of money, eventually, after they actually use up those 200 rolls of toilet paper, that 20 pound block of cheese, and pallet of Raisin Bran. You can visit the Costco website and set up a membership for someone as a gift and they can get the actual membership card later.
Buy them a couple tickets to a great event or show as a little test. Will they give the extra ticket to you? You just gave them this very thoughtful gift, after all. Or do they keep them both. In which case, maybe they just get a box of chocolates from the drug store next time.
Back in the old days you were really rolling the dice when you chose a hotel. Either you called blindly after skimming the phone book or simply drove all night and hoped you saw a vacancy sign before you ran out of gas and got murdered by a vagrant. A hotels.com gift card is not just a way of picking up the tab for a night’s stay; it’s also the priceless gift of peace of mind.
Why just give money when you can pair it with the experience of spending a day together? Everyone has a list of things that they want to buy but can’t quite justify the expense. Cross a few things off that list by taking them on a shopping spree. If you need to have something for them to open or unwrap, just make a little gift card and let them pick a day that works for them.
Don’t rush to buy them a present they’ll almost never use. Let’s be honest, no one likes to be on the receiving end of those. Instead, get them a present that they’ll be rushing out of the door to use. Treat them to a night out in one of their top local restaurants. Who wouldn’t love an evening of gourmet food, fine wine and absolutely no dishes to do afterwards?