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Gifts In A Pinch

Finding a gift for a birthday, Christmas, or graduation present, is exciting and makes you feel good. But what happens when you forget to put that house warming party on the calendar? Or, when you’ve been working overtime and you realize your nephew’s birthday falls on the first day you’ve had off in awhile? Before that feeling of anxiety overcomes you, relax. You can get something they will love just in the nick of time with these last-minute gift ideas.

eGift Cards

Gift cards are among the most top-requested gifts. Gift cards allow your recipient to get what they want at a retailer they enjoy going to. What’s more, eGift cards are an environmentally friendly, quick gift option. Most retailers and restaurants offer eGift cards along with plastic gift cards.

When you send an eGift, the gift card is sent digitally to the recipient’s email address. Then, they can access the eGift card from their smartphone or tablet. Or, if they prefer, they can print the eGift card information and present the piece of paper to the cashier when shopping in-store. Most eGift cards can be used for online and in-store purchases, making them a flexible choice.

Groupon Deals

Get creative with your last-minute gift when you send an experience or outing using Groupon. Enter in the recipient’s city and see what event and restaurant offers are available in that area. Gift them an ax-throwing session, a painting class, or a nice dinner at a new restaurant in the area.

Using a Groupon deal is easy. The person you send it to will receive an email notifying them of the gift. They can either print the email that includes the voucher or bring it up on their phone to show the merchant at the time of redemption. Make sure you tell them to read the fine print on the email though as the voucher may expire if not used within a certain amount of time.

Subscription Boxes and Services

Although we live in a digital age, receiving something in the mail is still exciting. More than just a one-time gift, subscription boxes, and services allow the recipient to receive a gift consistently. There are many types to choose from. Depending on what the recipient is into, you can gift a streaming service for a year, a monthly snack box delivery, 6 months’ worth of beauty samples, and more. Here are a few examples of some popular subscription services to check out.

  • Amazon Prime
  • Blue Apron
  • Birchbox
  • Netflix
  • FitFabFun
  • Dollar Shave Club
  • BarkBox 

eBooks and Digital Magazines

If your friend or loved one has enough books to fill an entire room, you may want to consider sending them an eBook or digital magazine subscription. Besides not taking up as much physical space in their home, digital books and magazines can be accessed on an eReader (like a Nook from Barnes and Noble or an Amazon Kindle) and on iOS and Android devices. If using an iOS or Android device, the recipient will need to download an eBook app before being able to read the book you sent. Popular eBook apps include Amazon Kindle, Nook, eBook Reader, Google Play Books, and Scribd.

eBooks and digital magazines are accessible. They can be viewed on a smartphone, tablet, computer, or eReader. They are often a few bucks cheaper than their physical counterparts and can be customized to fit the reader’s needs. For example, the font can be enlarged, and the reader can always pick up where he or she left off. No bookmarks needed.

Donations to Charity

Does the person you need to buy for seem to have everything? Or, are they passionate about a particular cause or issue? If so, donate to a charity or foundation you know they support. Or, you can even send them a gift card to support a charity of their choice.

While there are a ton of organizations out there, it’s important to use caution when donating. To ensure that your gift goes the distance in terms of impact, visit charitywatch.org and see the letter grade given to the charity you have in mind. This nonprofit organization does the homework for you, investigating where and how donation dollars are spent. It’s a helpful website for anyone interested in giving.

Buy Online, Pick Up In-Store

After a long day, you receive a calendar notification on your phone. Your sister-in-law’s birthday party is tomorrow night and you completely forgot to swing by the store on your lunch break. Now what? Well, there are any of the aforementioned options listed above. Or, you can combine the ease of online shopping with the convenience of picking it up at a store near you.

Browse store products and add them to your cart as needed. However, instead of waiting for the items to be delivered or paying extra money for expedited shipping, you can select in-store pick up. The service is free and it’s a game-changer. Try it out for yourself at any of the following stores. These retailers even offer same-day pickup when you order by a certain time.

  • Best Buy
  • Kohl’s
  • Walmart
  • Home Depot

To be on the safe side, read each store’s pick-up policy. Most retailers will send you an email or text alert notifying you that the order is ready to be picked up and there might even be a special parking spot or line you can use since the gift is already paid for. You’re just going in to grab it. Such a quick process, right? The confirmation email, invoice, or an ID is typically required to make sure the item goes to the rightful purchaser.

In conclusion, you can still give a fantastic gift, even at the last minute. So, if you just received an email about a co-worker’s retirement party and you’re in charge of the gift, remember that you have plenty of options at your fingertips.

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