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Last Minute Present Ideas That Don’t Look Like You Procrastinated

Did you put off your Christmas shopping until now? Forget to get something for a family member? Someone random coming to your Christmas dinner that you weren’t planning on? No worries. You can still get a great gift, even a thoughtful gift! Get inspired with these last minute present ideas. 

Well, it’s December 21st. And I’ve got some bad news for you. It’s unfortunately (probably) a little too late to start your holiday shopping on Amazon.

There ARE some major U.S. Metros that offer Same-Day or 1-Day shipping from Amazon – so you may be in luck. Just hop over to Amazon to check to see if same-day delivery or next-day delivery is available where you live. 

However, if you’re like the rest of us who live in Small-Town USA – it’s too late to get a physical gift delivered. 

But don’t worry! I’ve got some great last minute present ideas for you today! Take a deep breath. You’re in the right place! 

Even though it is the eleventh hour, there’s still plenty of time to get the perfect gift for your best friend! Or that random person who is going to be coming to your Christmas dinner (how embarrassing would it be if they were the only one who didn’t have something to open?). These are my favorite last minute present ideas that are still thoughtful!

This last minute present ideas guide contains affiliate links, but nothing that I wouldn’t recommend wholeheartedly. Read my full disclosure here.

A pinterest graphic with text overlay that says

Last Minute Present Ideas That Still Look Like You Thought Ahead

Give an e-gift card

An image of gift card holding by Santa Claus.

You can order a gift card via email or text message in just minutes (or print it out and throw it in a Christmas card). It may seem like a “cop-out”, but the person that receives it will probably love it. I don’t know about you, but I love receiving gift cards because I can pick out exactly what I want.

Amazon gift cards are usually the safest option because people can get literally anything they want on Amazon. But you can also buy gift cards from other retailers on Amazon – like StarbucksUberDoorDashBestBuy, Apple, and more!

You can also snag a traditional plastic gift card when you run to go to the grocery store at the last minute. I love how there are so many gift card options now at most stores. Remember those days when you actually had to go to the store to get a gift card for it? 

Give an experience

A pinterest collage of the best experience gift ideas,

I’m all about experience gifts over more clutter. It means even more when you can do the experience with the recipient too! 

Most of these you can buy either online (and print) or by phone. It can also be as simple as a note on a Christmas card. One year I gave my sister and mother-in-law a mani/pedi and we all went together. I just wrote a card that said nails were on me later that week.

Experience gift ideas

  • Massage or facial (SpaFinder is great for this)
  • Movie tickets
  • Concert or gift card to buy tickets from TicketMaster (great for a music lover!)
  • Sporting event tickets
  • Admission to a theme park
  • Pass for an indoor playplace
  • Dance lessons
  • Restaurant gift certificates
  • Tickets (or membership) to a museum 
  • Paint and sip night
  • Cooking classes
  • Pottery class
  • Comedy club tickets 
  • Wine tasting
  • AirBNB or VRBO gift card
  • Escape room
  • Online class – can be anything you think they would be interested in… cooking, photography, fitness, etc. 
  • Hot air balloon ride
  • Outdoor adventure (ziplining, kayaking, fly fishing, etc). 

Give a subscription

An image of a woman holding her gifts with text overlay that says

This is another one that doesn’t cause more clutter – a subscription to something they will use and love. I love that it is a longer-lasting gift that they can use way beyond Christmas Day. It is like a monthly mini-Christmas all year long.

Subscriptions are usually incredibly easy to buy and send, which makes them great last-minute gifts! You can sign up for a new subscription service in minutes! 

Ideas for monthly subscription gifts

  • Amazon Prime – even if they are already an Amazon Prime member they can use the money to buy something on Amazon instead
  • Streaming Service (NetFlix, Hulu, etc)
  • Audible
  • Babbel to learn a new language
  • Spotify Premium
  • Magazine Subscription – one year I got Magnolia and another year I got Better Homes & Gardens and loved them both!
  • Skillshare or Master Class Subscription
  • Gym Membership

Subscription boxes to gift

They have subscription boxes for SO many different things! Explore hundreds of different ideas and sort by the recipient on CrateJoy!

Find something with in-store pick-up

An image of a woman carrying a  basket of goodies.

Even though it may be too late to order gifts from Amazon, chances are you can still find some great ideas online and do an in-store or curbside pickup (or in some cases delivery) so you don’t have to deal with the lines. I love the beauty of shopping without waiting in lines!

Most larger stores have pickup options, so it is worth checking out the options for you locally. Just give ’em a ring or check online to make sure they’re offering the pickup service near you. Their options may change around the holidays when everyone is doing their gift shopping!

This is a great option if you’re dealing with shipping delays at the last minute. 

Stores that offer in-store or curbside pickup

Coupon book

An image of  DIY printable coupons.
Print this coupon printable

Make your own or print one out, like this. The key is that they can redeem the coupons anytime they want throughout the year.

Acts of service coupon book ideas

A collage of acts of services coupon ideas.

The coupon ideas I tend to love are acts of service – things you can do for the other person! These are great because most of the time they are free and always super appreciated!

  • Cook dinner
  • Do the dishes for a week
  • Distraction-free game night
  • 1-hour massage
  • Cleaning chores
  • Breakfast in bed
  • Kid-free afternoon for shopping
  • Wash their car
  • DIY project or help around the house with the Honey-Do list
  • Tech help or teaching them something on their computer or phone
  • Garden duty or pulling weeds 
  • Mow their lawn or rake leaves
  • Walk their dog or clean out the litter box
  • Organize an area of their house

Monthly coupons

An image of DIY monthly coupons for last minute gift ideas.

This is probably my favorite on this list of last minute present ideas! This is the gift that lasts all year long!

Last year for the kids we did monthly coupons as a Christmas gift and we had so much fun using the coupons throughout the year. Each month had a different envelope with coupons on it. We let them open all of them on Christmas morning to see what was coming, but then after that, they weren’t allowed to open them until the month so it was like a little surprise each month. 

For example, one month was Me and Quinn getting our nails done together while the boys played mini golf. Other months were ice skating, going shopping for a new outfit, movie dates, museum days, bowling, and the local family fun center. Sometimes it was one-on-one time with each kid and other times it was the whole family together. We made so many great memories!

Family fun monthly coupon ideas (themed by month)

  • January: Indoor Campout, Snowman Building Contest, Ice Skating, Ski Day, Sledding 
  • February: Valentine’s Craft Day or Heart-Shaped Pancakes
  • March: DIY Obstacle Course or Nature Scavenger Hunt
  • April: Easter Egg Decorating or Picnic in the Backyard
  • May: Mother’s Day Tea Party or Father’s Day Craft Session
  • June: Beach Day or Backyard Water Balloon Fight
  • July: Firework Watching or DIY Ice Cream Bar
  • August: Camping Trip or Movie Night Under the Stars
  • September: Apple Picking or School Supply Shopping Spree
  • October: Pumpkin Painting or Halloween Costume Making
  • November: Thanksgiving Craft or Family Game Tournament
  • December: Holiday Light Tour, Nutcracker Ballet, Christmas Cookie Baking

More family monthly coupon ideas

  • Dinner Date: Kids pick the restaurant.
  • Arts & Crafts Day: Get creative with paint, paper, and glue.
  • Science Experiment: Make a volcano or slime.
  • Pizza Night: Everyone gets to top their own pie.
  • Karaoke Party: Belt out your favorite tunes.
  • DIY Mini-Golf: Create a course at home with household items.
  • Bike Ride: Explore local trails or parks.
  • Pajama Day: Stay in your PJs and watch movies all day.
  • Farm Visit: Meet the animals and pick some produce.
  • Library Day: Pick out new books and have a reading session.
  • Dance Party: Create a playlist and dance like nobody’s watching.
  • Cooking Class: Whip up a new recipe together.
  • Board Game Marathon: Spend the day playing everyone’s favorites.

Share recipes

Print this printable recipe card

Print out these recipe cards (or make your own) and write out your family’s favorite recipes. Bonus points if you know it is a recipe they love! 

Swing by the grocery store and grab some cooking tools, a kitchen gadget, dish towels, or an oven mitt to pair with this for an easy gift idea!

Printable calendar

Everyone needs a new calendar for next year right? This one I designed with bible verses brings you inspiration all year round. The best part? You can print as many copies as you want!

Printable gifts

Speaking of printables, they make GREAT last minute present ideas. There are so many different types of gifts that you can print quickly and easily at the last minute. Here are some of my favorite printable gifts from Etsy. 

Hope you enjoyed these last minute present ideas for all of your procrastinators out there! Even if you’ve waited until the last minute this holiday season, you can still give the ultimate gift that doesn’t feel like you waited. 

Which last-minute gift idea are you using? 

​Let us know in the comments!

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