The never-ending money pit that is buying gifts can feel like a slippery slope for many. Whether it’s Christmas, a wedding, or a birthday you can run through that dilemma of do you go for some cheap gift ideas, or go all out and get a mega present.
Often, you worry that the go-to cheap gifts will be just that, cheap. The last thing you want is your friends and family to perceive you as a cheapskate.
With the average US consumer spending an average of $906 on Christmas gifts, it can make the holidays feel less than ideal. However, there is a solution.
To prepare you for the onslaught and to reduce down your costs throughout the year, this guide will help you figure out ten cheap gift ideas that will be suitable for any occasion.
Time to make buying gifts exciting and affordable!
10 Cheap Gift Ideas for Every Type of Occasion
To get the most out of the cheap gift ideas mentality, you sometimes need to get a little creative. It’s true when people say that true giving comes from the heart.
Whenever you are on a tight budget, and you need to summon a mighty present from seemingly nothing, you can try frugal living to save up for Christmas, or you can get creative.
Let’s run through ten of the best cheap gift ideas to give you a little inspiration.
One of the best ways to give a gift that stands out is to get crafty. This is probably one of the best cheap gift ideas if you have somebody who appreciates creativity.
1. Create Your Own Homemade Fort Kit
Whether your gift is for an adult (perhaps a Valentine’s Day present) or children, we all remember the joy we felt when building a blanket fort. Bring back the joy of making a fort by assembling your homemade fort kit.
Get together a combination of bedsheets, ribbons, a set of walkie-talkies, a flashlight, a set of bungee cords, a set of strong clips, rope, glow sticks, and a pillowcase to keep it all in.
You can usually pick up the entire set for around $20 from a combination of dollar stores. The fun you’ll have getting involved in creating the fort will help make it a memory to last a lifetime.
2. Etch a Family Recipe into a Cutting Board
Recipes are a tradition for many families that they pass down through the generations. Why not make your favorite recipe stand out by cutting it directly into a cutting board.
You can go through a homemade option by carving it yourself or even take it to an engraving store to do the work for you in a neater fashion. You can pick up a good quality cutting board for under $20, this gift can also get passed down through the family.
That’s not just a cheap gift, that’s you creating a legacy.
3. Cupcake in a Jar
One of the cutest little gifts you could ever hope to receive. Creating and crafting a cupcake may seem like a throw-away gift.
But wrapping that adorable little cupcake up inside a jar, giving it the authentic feel of one of those old wooden ships inside of a jar makes it stand out. It may take you a little time to make the cupcake and fit it in the jar without squashing it, but it can be worth the effort.
The Individual Presents
Sometimes, getting creative just isn’t everybody’s forte. For that reason, you can check out these individual cheap gift ideas that will still stand out from the crowd without breaking the bank.
4. The Blanket to end all Blankets
Nothing is better than a birthday/Christmas morning spent on the sofa cozied up in your newest blanket. Luckily, there are a wide variety of blankets which are perfect for getting cuddly.
Whether she’s 13 or 53, you can guarantee that a mermaid blanket is bound to have her grinning from ear to ear. If you’re feeling particularly thrifty, these crochet knitted masterpieces can even make your own mermaid blanket.
If you’ve got a loved one who craves warmth but isn’t into the whole ‘mermaid’ thing, then a wearable blanket could be the answer. Blankets that act like a robe have risen in popularity and have also decreased in price.
Because of this you can easily grab these types of blankets cheap from your local Target and can make a welcoming present on a cold Christmas morning.
5. A Nice Poster or Print in a Quality Frame
It’s not unusual to see millennials with walls completely bare or even worse, plastered in unremoved posters from college. Picking out home decor for others can be as challenging as discussing politics over Christmas dinner.
Luckily, the internet is awash with amazing artists creating incredible posters and content. If they’re into music try and find a concept poster for one of their favorite bands.
If they’re into Marvel films, the internet has a whole host of fan-made artwork that is simply incredible.
Make sure to pair up your online artwork with a nice frame to finish of the look of the gift.
6. Christmas Tree Ornaments
We all had our favorite ornaments when we were younger. You’d fight between your siblings to put it on the tree first, often not knowing where it came from, only that it was your favorite.
What better gift to give at Christmas than a Christmas ornament. The beauty of ornaments is that you can handcraft so many of them and they can be completely unique.
For cheap gift ideas that add sentimental value and appreciation, gifts don’t come much better than these.
The Keepsake Collections
When it comes to gifts almost all gifts can be instantly forgettable. It is rare when the receiver treasures a particular gift.
Cheap gift ideas that can become keepsakes are an incredible way to give a gift which will leave people talking about your present for years to come.
7. Customizable Letterboards
Letterboards were all the rage years ago, and like all things, when we run out of new ideas, we re-use the old ones. Letterboards are making a miraculous comeback as one of the must-have home decor accessories.
The beauty of these boards is you can completely customize them to show the receiver of your gift just how treasured your memories are. For a wedding, you can recite things the happy couple has shared leading up to their big day.
For your best friend, you can mention private jokes with single words and bring back memories you shared from years before. For your significant other, you can remind them of a place you met, a memorable date and even a pet-name you have for them.
The possibilities are only as limited as your imagination.
8. Photograph in a Frame
Nothing says a captured memory like a photo, they say a picture tells a 1000 words so why not blow one up and slap a frame on it. At the risk of making it sound trivial, a framed picture can be a beautiful gift to give and can actually be one of the best cheap gift ideas if you’re on a budget.
All you need is a captured memory, somewhere to print the picture and a frame. If you’re feeling particularly artsy you can even decorate the frame with other small bits and pieces to make it extra personal.
Everything from colored drawing pins with string between to attaching and gluing cute smaller passport sized pictures around the frame can make a bog standard gift into a personalized masterpiece.
9. Coffee Mug, Photo Calendar or an Old-Fashioned Scrapbook
We all love the personal touch; it adds a great keepsake to your household which you can keep for years. Whether you decide to go for a coffee mug with your face on it with a cheeky message, a photo calendar sharing amazing memories or an old-fashioned scrapbook, all can be amazing gifts.
Photo calendars are a super easy way to put together memories, quickly and easily. Cheap gift ideas don’t come much better, however, than a scrapbook.
You can put a scrapbook together for under $10 if you are particularly thrifty, and the memories, hand-written notes and crafts you can put into it can make it a hugely treasured gift.
10. Journal with a Personal Message
Stationary is always a fond favorite when it comes to cheap gift ideas, but why not make your stationery stand out with a hidden personal message. You can add a treasure map note inside the gift making the receiver jump from page to page to land on the final personal note eventually.
It can be a fun exercise, and you can include fun, cute messages inside which show you put real time and effort into making the perfect gift.
Cheap Gift Ideas That Beat the iPad’s of the Gift World
When it comes to cheap gift ideas, there is one thing that really makes them stand out, and that’s effort.