10 Alternatives to Traditional Gift Giving. Gift-giving is one of the best — and worst — parts of Christmas. What’s better than seeing excited children digging into their stockings or tearing open colorful wrapping paper on Christmas morning? Not much! But as people get older, gift giving (and getting) is less exciting. You can’t buy your brother that new car he’s been ogling or gift your sister a leather couch. Nobody has that kind of money. Other than those luxuries, your siblings, in-laws, and parents probably don’t want much. You probably don’t want much! But because gift-giving is such a crucial part of Christmas, you have to do something. If you and your loved ones are willing to look outside the traditional (gift) box, consider one of these alternatives to traditional gift-giving.
When Christmas rolls around, you may be mad at your parents for giving you so many siblings. How are you supposed to buy a gift for parents, siblings, and all of your nieces and nephews? Well, your siblings are probably a little old to care too much about gifts. If you play Secret Santa with the adults, you only have to buy one gift — not ten!
This gift exchange is best done in early December so everybody can hang the ornaments they get this year. It’s a great way to give somebody something small without adding permanent clutter to their home. What’s not to love?
Make a Recipe Book
You’ve probably got somebody in your life who just seems to be lost in the kitchen. You’ve also got people who love being in the kitchen. Unless somebody just hates cooking, giving someone a custom-made recipe book full of recipes you know they’ll love is a great, heartwarming idea.
An abundance swap is one of the easiest ways to have a quiet Christmas this year. With an abundance swap, everybody involved exchanges quality items they have at home but don’t use. It’s a great way for everybody to get great gifts without breaking the bank!
Give an Experience
No, no, no — we don’t mean you get to give away any of your “World Famous Massages.” (They’re not great and nobody wants them.) Instead, buy someone tickets to a movie premiere, take people to a restaurant they’ve never been to, or go to a Christmas play. Just make sure to do something that you know they’ll never forget!
Make a Calendar
Sure, everybody already has a calendar on their fancy little smartphone, but they still make great gifts. Calendars are one of those things that can be both functional and emotional. You can make a calendar for your family (or workplace) with pictures of everybody. Add a nice touch by including important dates like people’s birthdays and anniversaries. Just make sure you don’t forget anybody!
Give Baked Goods
You, your friends, and your family may be at the point where gifts seem to be a hassle — not just giving gifts but also receiving them. You don’t want much anymore and everything else just seems to clutter up space. Instead, you can do a baked goods exchange, so you can give great gifts that won’t annoy anybody!
Buy Something Someone Needs
For the adults in your life, you might opt to buy something someone needs. If your parents are remodeling, go to Lowe’s. If you know your sister is struggling to buy her kids’ school supplies, buy your nieces and nephews some great school gear. Just make sure you don’t give your wife any cleaning supplies!
If you have grandchildren, your children are probably more worried about their kids than they are about themselves. Consider opening a savings account for your grandchildren. Kids are expensive, so your grandchildren may not have one already. The savings accounts should probably be a gift for your children, though; your grandchildren probably don’t want money they won’t use until they’re grown.
Donations to Charity
If you’re trying to get a gift for someone who has made it clear that they really don’t want anything, donate to charity in their name. Find a charity that you know they’ll love and give them a certificate of donation.