Put simply, Dads like cool stuff. But that doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune on it. Here are 5 tips to save money on gifts for Dads, but still get something awesome. You’re welcome.
People say it’s the thought that counts. That’s true if you’re on the giver, but if you’re on the receiving end, it kind of sucks if you open a box to find a pair of socks from the dollar store. Ever had to fake a smile and word of thanks through gritted teeth? Of course you have. So why subject a Dad, a hero among men, to that kind of nonsense? Do these things instead.
1. Pretend you’re a kid again with a piggy bank
Throwing a dollar into a jar when you were younger felt like you were well on the way to buying that racing car. These days, everyone knows all the best way to get one is to lease, but whatever. The point is that putting 1 dollar away each day for 2 months can equate to $60, which frankly is enough to get a gift that’s not terrible. Plan a year out and you’ve got $365, a truly remarkable number given that tip money for the pizza guy is never around when you need it. Whether you get a piggy bank, a swear jar or just do it the grown up way online, set a goal and let those small numbers add up to = a happy Dad.
2. Give an activity rather than a gift
Know a Dad who’d love to fly a fighter jet? Or go on a speak easy tour of NYC? Or learn how to make sushi by hand? Yeah me too; that’s some pretty cool stuff, which we all know that Dad’s love. Unless the Dad in question is a brand new father, most Big Papas have had years of gifts thrown their way and are probably looking for something a little more exciting. For his birthday, I gave my Dad Looney Toons ties every year for at least half a decade. I’m sure he was thrilled. Bottom line- physical gifts are good, but experiences or activities can be even better, especially if you can find a great deal on, say, Groupon. Go take a look!
3. Hit the sales aisle
If you glossed over the activity idea, there’s no shame in hitting the sales aisle at your Dad’s favorite store. Why pay full price for those Levi’s when you can get them on sale for 50% off? We’re saving money here, and that’s what it’s all about. Welcome to gift giving 101.
4. Cook a meal (or get the ingredients for Dad to cook it)
Many, many Dads think they’re Gordon Ramsay in the kitchen. And tbh quite a few are legendary on the BBQ. That being said, you can save some dough and create a memorable experience by cooking the big man his favorite meal, or at least something in that ballpark. Or if the Dad in question is a control freak like mine, buy all the stuff so he can do it himself. A good option is always meat. Places like Meat Locker stock some incredible cuts and will ship them right to your door. If you want to make a Dad smile like never before, arm yourself with a 60 oz Cowboy Tomahawk steak and fire up the grill.
5. Use your credit card points as cashback
I recently discovered I had a tidy sum just sitting there minding its own business. I’m going to use it for something else entirely, but if I hadn’t just had the Cowboy steak idea, you can bet I’d be using those points to get a pretty legit gift. It’s pretty much free money, so use it. Here’s a tip though- sometimes going the cashback route is better than converting straight to Amazon as you can get more bang for your buck.
The main thing is that you don’t have to spend a fortune to get a Dad something he’ll actually appreciate. Do yourself a favor- avoid the wallet saver stores and look for something a bit more exciting. It’s perfectly fine and acceptable to save money on gifts by getting creative and thinking outside the box. Not everyone has disposable income to burn. Of course if wallet saver is your only option, get in there and hunt for something cool like Howard Carter in ancient Egypt!