Guru Saves Christmas: Presents
Written by Robert Bester, Consumer Finance Expert Robert has been a writer for six years, specialising in consumer finance and the UK lending market. Concentrating on consumer credit products, Robert writes informative articles that help customers manage their personal finances efficiently.
23rd November 2020
7 minute read
Have you started to make your Christmas present list for 2019 yet? If you haven’t, that’s perfectly understandable; the smoke has only just started to clear from Bonfire Night and there is still leftover trick or treat sweets from Halloween that haven’t been eaten yet.
But soon it’ll be time to throw away the increasingly terrifying pumpkin in the corner and replace it with a Christmas wreath on the front door. When that happens, you’re going to have to start your Christmas shopping (preferably not 12 hours before the big day, unless you like fighting with a stranger over the last roll of wrapping paper).
The Guru’s advice? Get it done as early as possible. That’s not so you can be one of those people who tells everyone they have finished their shopping 364 days early as planned, but more so you can avoid crowds, keep stress low and get everything that you plan on buying.
So, sit back, relax and read the first in our #GuruSavesChristmas series on Presents to get yourself ahead of the game. It means you can have a (relatively) stress-free December and get some great presents for close friends, family and yourself!
When should I start Christmas shopping?
As mentioned, the earlier you can start Christmas shopping, the better. Bear in mind you also have winter sales that you might be able to save some money with, but there’s no reason you can’t finish the majority of your shopping in early November.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday should hopefully be a chance to get money off more expensive items and save on online shopping, but that’s not to say you should leave all of your shopping until the end of November. The more you can do now, the easier you will make it on yourself as it gets busier.
Read our piece on Black Friday 2019 and find out the important shopping dates leading up to Christmas.
Christmas gift trends for 2019
First off, what are the big trends for Christmas presents in 2019? What will your family and friends have heard about recently that they desperately want to get their hands on?
Thankfully the Guru has done some research and has found the top 5 Christmas present trends for 2019, so you don’t have to:
- Advent calendars – everyone from whisky to soap retailers have their own advent calendar. Watch out for beauty and cosmetics advent calendars – you can often get a good deal on the amount of products you receive in one calendar
- Subscription boxes – anything from meat to beer to cosmetics, getting someone a subscription is the new voucher, but make sure to let them know how to carry it on or stop it
- Vegan Cookbooks – there has been an explosion in vegan-ness in 2019, with many restaurants and supermarkets making sure they have plenty of options for vegans and those who are thinking of eating vegan. That means a vegan cookbook is just the thing for wannabe healthy-eaters in 2020
- Smart-home accessories – from smart doorbells to wifi scales, there are plenty of smart home accessories for you to choose from that are best bought for the gadget lovers of the family
- Self-sustaining or eco-friendly gifts – there’s never been a better time to get a grow-your-own kit at home, or even a whiteboard notebook so you aren’t wasting paper in 2020
Christmas Gifts for Him
If you need some inspiration for a male friend, husband, boyfriend or even a dad or uncle, you’ve come to the right place. Below we’ve put together some sought-after gifts that should go down well at Christmas time. At least they’ll bulk out his present selection by looking good next to the socks you’ve already bought him.
- Tile Mate – if he keeps on losing his keys, make it easier for him to find them again. The Tile Mate makes a loud ring that can be activated from your smartphone app. You can even double click the tile itself to ring your phone if you’ve lost that!
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare – the game that started a huge franchise of cinematic gun-toting has returned to its original name, which will perhaps conjure up some nostalgia if he ever played the original, released back in 2007. Alternatives for games include Death Stranding and The Outer Worlds
- Ring doorbell – the very latest smart home gadget comes in the form of the Ring doorbell. Not only is it great for home security, just imagine the excitement of him setting it up on Christmas day and getting the incoming family to try it out. Fun and practical all in one gift
- Whisky or spirits tasting selection – rather than buy one big bottle of whisky for him, why not get a tasting selection of whisky, rum or gin? Retailers such as Master of Malt or The Whisky Exchange both have great gift set ranges to choose from
- Airpods Pro – there are plenty of Bluetooth headphones available on the market, so it might be a good opportunity to treat him to wireless music this Christmas. You can’t go wrong with Beats, Bose or Sony but the new contender are the Airpods Pro, ideal if he already has an iPhone and wants to try out active noise cancellation
Christmas Gifts for Her
Are you looking for inspiration for your wife, girlfriend, mum, auntie or sister? Even if it’s just for a female friend, we’ve got plenty of inspiration for you. Have a look below at the Guru’s top present picks for 2019:
- Nespresso Essenza Mini coffee machine – the latest outing from Nespresso is a slimline version of their range that would fit nicely in her kitchen or possibly on her desk at work! The latest offer comes with free pods so she can use it straight away
- Fitbit Versa 2 Smart Fitness Watch – an excellent precursor to January is the latest smart watch from Fitbit, ideal for tracking exercise and steps on a daily basis, along with a trove of other smart features
- Edinburgh Gin Strawberry & Pink Pepper Liqueur – if she is a Gin fan, why not treat her to the latest flavours from Edinburgh Gin Distillery? Along with Strawberry & Pink Pepper you can also get an Apple & Spice Liqueur, Christmas and Mulled flavours that should go down a treat
- Dyson Airwrap – this exceptional new hair styler from Dyson comes with a price tag, but is the must have beauty gadget for 2019, all powered with exceptional dyson technology
- The Testaments by Margaret Atwood – as a sequel to the empowering novel and recent miniseries, The Handmaid’s Tale, The Testaments is the must-have book in 2019 and has already won the Booker prize to high acclaim, as if it needed anymore hype. Praise be!
Christmas Gifts for Family
Whilst you might have individual presents sorted, if your list is looking a bit light and you need to entertain the kids (even if they are grumpy teenagers), you might also want to think about family presents.
Whether it’s a fun boardgame or activity that will entertain the whole household on Christmas day, have a look below for some family gift inspiration:
- Slush Puppie machine – do you remember getting an original slush puppie? Just think of the fun you can have on Christmas day with different flavoured snow cones and your very own machine!
- Cluedo Game of Thrones – if you have Game of Thrones fans in the house and need to give them more encouragement to play a family boardgame, why not get this GoT themed version of Cluedo?
- Nintendo Switch – while your family might be pining after the days of playing Nintendo Wii (or you might still be playing!) the next best thing is a Nintendo Switch. Games like Mario Kart can still be fun for the whole family to enjoy. Alternatively try out the Switch Lite if you’re looking for an individual gift
- Pictionary Air – get ready to play a family classic, but this time with a tech-twist. Pictionary Air lets you draw in thin air, with teammates viewing what is being drawn on a TV or smart device
- Ikea Symfonisk – if you want to flood your living room with sound this Christmas, why not splash out on the new collaboration between IKEA and Sonos?. It comes in two versions that blend naturally into the background and treats the whole family to some background tunes while eating Christmas dinner
Christmas Gifts for Children
It might seem like kids are the easiest to buy for nowadays, but it can be tough to keep up with the latest trends in toys so it might not be as simple as you think. Below, the Guru has picked out the best toys and games for kids that would make perfect Christmas gifts:
- L.O.L. Surprise! dolls – these L.O.L Surprise! dolls have taken the top spot recently as the most sought-after dolls and playsets for little girls (and boys). Look out for the Winter Disco playsets and accessories
- Blume Dolls – these unique Blume dolls require you to add water for a crazy hairstyle to sprout out of a flowerpot. Series 1 is available now with 22 dolls to collect
- NERF Fortnite rocket launcher - by now everyone should have heard of the phenomenon that is Fortnite, though it can be tough to buy presents when all they want to do is play on a games console all day. With the NERF Fortnite rocket launcher, you can have some fun on Christmas day and a have a game in real life!
- Lego Star Wars range – there are plenty of Star Wars Lego sets available, for little ones (and adults) who are the biggest fans in the whole galaxy. There’s even an advent calendar for those who want to wake up to a new character every day in December
- Harry Potter Invisibility Cloak – if you’ve got any little Harry Potter fans in the house, why not give them an invisibility cloak they’d always dreamed of! With a little bit of help from AR on your smart device, you can have your very own invisibility cloak on Christmas day
Don’t forget to wrap your presents!
Last but not least, make sure you have everything you need to wrap all your gifts in time for Christmas so they can be ready under the tree for your loved ones. Have a think about picking up the following extras along with your presents:
- Wrapping paper
- Gift tags
- Gift bags
- Gift boxes
- Shredded paper
- Christmas cards
Once you have these Christmas essentials, you’ll be Christmas ready! Remember that if you want to spread the cost of your Christmas presents and protect your purchases, getting a 0% purchase credit card might be an option for you. Take a look at our range of cards using the link below. Good luck!