Even the most organized of holiday shoppers can find themselves scrambling to buy a last-minute holiday gift, whether it be for an unexpected guest at a family gathering or a present to exchange with a neighbor or co-worker. Thanks to the Internet, using your credit card and/or Paypal account you can shop for great gifts online from the comfort of your home, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Here are some ideas for last-minute gifts you can buy right now:
Most major retailers such as Apple, Amazon and Best Buy now offer electronic gift cards that can be purchased instantly in any denomination. Purchasers can opt to either print out a gift certificate to include in a holiday card, or send the recipient an email with a link to their present. This is the perfect gift for someone who you do not know well or is difficult to shop for, while tech-savvy pre-teens and young adults love receiving e-gift cards, giving them the experience and independence of online shopping without the need for their own credit card.
Gourmet Food & Drink Subscriptions
If your recipient is a food lover (who isn't?), consider purchasing an online subscription to a '... of the month' club. These gourmet gifts deliver specialized food and beverage products every month to their members' home or office, making this a gift that lasts throughout the year. You can find gift clubs offering everything from organic chocolate to grain-fed beef, and there's even a monthly gift club for dog owners, delivering a unique, seasonally-inspired assortment of dog treats every month.
Give Experiences Rather Than Things
Instead of gifting things, why not give experiences? When shopping online, you can purchase gift certificates for a day at the spa, hotel stays, theater subscriptions and sporting events. These experience-based gifts are among some of the most thoughtful, heartfelt gifts you can give, making these presents a great choice for that someone special on your shopping list.
The holidays are the perfect time to 'pay it forward' by making a donation to a charitable organization. Many non-profits have websites that allow you to make a gift donation on behalf of someone else, with the recipient receiving a thank-you email, card or small gift directly from the charity. Consider making a cash contribution to an animal welfare service on behalf of an animal lover, donating to a scholarship at the school your recipient graduated from or contributing to your local hospital.
Thanks to the huge variety of online instant gifting options, you can shop for thoughtful, creative, last-minute holiday gifts without rushing off to your local gas station or all-night convenience store. Shopping online is a great way to buy unique, personalized presents at any time, offering a great solution for those awkward, embarrassing last-minute gift dilemmas. Online shopping is the perfect way to find thoughtful gifts throughout the year for everyone on your list, even the ones you forgot about!
Written by Erica Alman, a self confessed online shopaholic. She loves hunting down bargains online and enjoys sharing her experiences on shopping blogs. Click here for more info about online shopping.