Gift giving is a challenge any time of year, whether it’s the holidays or birthdays. It’s especially difficult for established adults who have everything they need and don’t have a wishlist. Even if you know what their hobbies are, you might end up picking out an item they already have or don’t need.
Giving someone a practical gift takes a little thought, but some tried-and-true options are always well-received. The latest luxury watches and high-tech gadgets are often safe bets, as they are useful to a broad age range and work for people who are single, married, or have kids.
Here are some more great suggestions for useful gifts for practical people.
Wine Bottle Opener
Traditional corkscrews can be challenging to operate, especially when the cork is tightly lodged in the bottle. Fortunately, the latest wine bottle openers make it easier than ever to open bottles with just the lift of a lever or press of a button.
Wine bottle openers that run on electricity can use either mechanical force to open a wine bottle safely and easily. However, even non-electric openers can make smart use of air pressure or levers to make opening easier. Since the electric openers are usually rechargeable and easy to use, they make good gifts even for people who aren’t great with technology.
Roku Streaming Media Player
The advent of smart TVs has made it easier for Netflix and other streaming media services to be accessed anywhere. However, not all TVs have streaming services built-in, especially older TVs in hotels. Plus, it’s hard to watch live sports or your favorite shows on TV while traveling.
Roku is compact and brings Netflix, Hulu, and many other streaming services to you by plugging into all modern TVs. Not only is it perfect for entertaining yourself, but it also helps when you have surprise guests who need entertaining. It’s a practical choice for TV and movie fans who need fast, on-the-go access to a variety of media.
Hobby or Skill Lessons
If the person you’re buying a gift for has expressed an interest in a new hobby or is working on an existing skillset, getting them online or in-person lessons can be a great option. Anything from painting lessons to cooking classes can make an excellent gift.
In-person lessons are trickier than online ones, and you may need to search around to see what local businesses allow you to buy lessons as a gift for another person. Make sure to choose lessons with multiple time options available. One-on-one lessons are usually the most flexible, and their increased price may be worth it if the recipient is serious about improving their skills.
Even in the smartphone age, nothing can replace the elegance of a designer watch. A watch completes an outfit, both at work and when out on the town. It adds class and sophistication to even simple outfits, taking your recipient’s stylish attire to the next level.
Famous brands like Rolex and Cartier are sure to impress the recipient. Since these brands have various styles available, pay close attention to the recipient’s wardrobe and other jewelry to pick out a watch that’s perfect for them. People who wear little jewelry might appreciate a more understated style, but others may prefer a larger or flashier model.
Although some watches have colored leather bands, you can also get ones with silver or gold bracelets. Silver or stainless steel may be the best option for matching a wide variety of wardrobe colors, but a leather band works well if you know the recipient’s favorite colors and overall style.
Heated Neck Wraps
Neck and shoulder pain is a chronic problem for many adults. Taking over-the-counter medication is a hassle, so many people enjoy having a small heating pad that drapes over their neck and shoulders. Even if they don’t usually suffer from neck or shoulder pain, many people enjoy having something extra to stay warm with in the winter.
Although some electric options are available, many neck wraps contain special beads that retain heat and warm up in the microwave. Some of these beads also retain cold, so you can put them in the freezer for use as a cold pack as well. High-end neck wraps often contain lavender, which is also helpful for relaxation.
The best option partly depends on the recipient’s work schedule. For example, people with long commutes might appreciate a microwaveable one they can heat up before heading to work, while retirees won’t mind one that plugs into a wall for use at home.
Busy professionals and stressed-out parents are always looking for new ways to cook healthy food fast. Slow cookers are great if you have time to set it up in advance, but sometimes, a quicker option can be a lifesaver when work runs late, and the kids are hungry.
Air fryers use a minimal amount of oil to make delicious fried food without packing on the calories. You can make everything from french fries and chicken nuggets to Japanese-style tempura.
If you’re not sure about your recipient’s preferred recipes when cooking at home, look for a combination air fryer and pressure cooker. This gives a wider range of recipe options that include meats and vegetables in addition to fried foods.
Pour-Over Coffee Makers
Kitchen gadgets can be a challenge to pick out for friends and family. Some are too inexpensive and basic for gift-giving, and other, more substantial items are likely to already be in their kitchen.
Pour-over coffee is an emerging trend that is starting to move from boutique coffee shops to home kitchens. The beauty of pour-over coffee is that it puts control back into the hands of the maker, allowing customization of the exact flavor intensity and blends used. Try giving a pour-over coffee set with a coffee grinder and a bag of gourmet coffee for the ultimate gift set.
Giving a Thoughtful Gift
Ultimately, you don’t have to have the perfect gift for every occasion. With online shopping, people are now able to buy things for themselves year-round with relative ease.
What’s important is that you pick out a thoughtful, meaningful gift that shows you care about the recipient. Then, you can give them a gift that’s convenient, helpful, and stylish, which makes them more likely to think of you every time they use it.