12 Last Minute Gift Ideas You Can Purchase Without Leaving Home

Lisa Koivu

Unbelievably, Christmas is tomorrow! If you’re finishing up some last-minute shopping but aren’t interested in braving the malls, check out our list of 12 Last Minute Gift Ideas you can pick up from the comfort of home. Just think – you can get all of your shopping done in the same amount of time it would take you circle around looking for a parking spot!


1. Magazine Subscriptions

Check out this great list of magazine deals available at DiscountMags.com. There are magazines for everyone and many subscriptions cost less than $5 through December 25! Amazon is having a $5 magazine sale and 19 magazines are available. If your recipient is super tech-savvy, there are currently FREE one year digital subscriptions available for Cosmopolitan and Seventeen.


2. Music

Is it possible to go wrong with an iTunes gift card? I can always use more music! Or, if you want to go a different route, purchase Tune Up for your recipient. With Tune Up you can keep better track of your music in iTunes, as well as fix mislabeled music, delete duplicate songs, and more.


3. Literature

Does your recipient have a Kindle? If so, get him/her a few books to read. Did you know that Amazon even has a list of the top 100 FREE Kindle books? I keep finding new things to download that I totally don’t need, but hey … they’re free!


4. Tickets

If you’re going to treat someone to a movie, show, concert, or sporting event, you don’t need to have the tickets in-hand.  Though you probably will need to do a little bit of pre-planning.  Log into sites such as StubHub.com for sporting, theatre, and concert events, and Fandango.com for movie tickets.


5. Entertainment

Give the gift of streaming movies and television shows with a gift subscription to Netflix. Find a show or movie you both enjoy and set up future viewing dates.


6. Meal Planning

Send your busiest friends and family members a gift subscription to E-Mealz. Not familiar with E-Mealz? Check out our E-Mealz Review. In short, for very little money, E-Mealz sends you a full meal plan for the week based on the criteria you determine (such as number of people to be fed and favorite/nearest grocery store). It’s a real time saver! Right now, save 20% on gift subscriptions with coupon code “GIFT20″.


7. Get Crafty

Get your craftiest recipients an online knitting/crocheting/sewing/candy flower-making/etc. class via new daily deal site Craftsy! Lots of different classes are available and prices vary per class.


8. Gift Certificates

Many of our favorite sample sale sites and daily deal sites offer gift certificates for future shopping fun. Groupon is a great place to start because they’re located in most cities and gift certificates are valid on local deals, travel deals, and gift options. We also love Gilt Gift Certificates because Gilt has a little bit of everything for everyone. Combining the best of both worlds, we love the deals at Gilt City. Their deals are mainly located in a handful of major cities, but they also throw in some great national deals, too. If you’re looking for the gift that EVERYONE will love, send an e-gift card to Amazon. Since Amazon has everything, this gift is sure to please. If the gift doesn’t have to arrive tomorrow, check out PlasticJungle.com, where you can buy gift cards for less than full price!


9. Wine

Send them some discounted wine from InVino or Lot 18. Sure, it won’t make it to them by tomorrow, but let them know it’s headed their way. (And they won’t know you didn’t pay full price.)


10. Flowers

They’re probably not going to arrive tomorrow at this point, but you can never go wrong with a fresh bouquet of flowers! Have them delivered to someone near or far. If you’re in the NYC, Chicago, or Washington DC areas I highly recommend checking out H. Bloom. Alternatively, you can’t really ever go wrong with a bouquet from FTD!


11. Subscription Boxes

Send a gift that will keep his/her mailbox happy for months to come: a subscription box! Subscription boxes are so popular right now, and for a set amount of money you can send your recipient a box full of products ranging from things like beauty products to pocket squares to tea to organic snacks!

12. Make a Donation to Charity

OK, so making a donation to charity isn’t necessarily that exciting for the recipient, so we recommend using Kiva.org. Kiva gives micro loans to individuals and small businesses in poverty stricken areas.  The loans must be repaid over time, and the loan money comes from all of us.

The way it works is you log onto Kiva and find a project that you might be interested in funding.  You then choose to donate a certain amount of money, which will get paid back to you over time.  You’re kind of acting like a bank, though you won’t get paid in interest.  You will get lots of good will, however.

Kiva offers gift certificates, so the recipient of your gift can choose which project to fund, and then keep re-giving the funds after they’re paid back.   This is literally the gift that keeps on giving.



If you are going to brave the stores today, be sure to check out our 2011 Holiday Gift Guide for some last-minute shopping inspiration!

What great last minute gift ideas do you have that can easily be purchased today? Please share!