8 Christmas gifts for people who don’t need more stuff

What is the perfect Christmas gift for the person who doesn’t need anything? There are certainly people in need for whom new things are a luxury, but many of us have plenty of stuff, in some cases more stuff than we can keep organized already.

The idealistic solution for those who really want more stuff would be to skip gifts and instead encourage people to give to charity, such as this toy drive. That’s very admirable, but I have to admit that although I don’t like more clutter in my house, I do enjoy getting presents. A paradox, I know.

Some choose to give food (boxes of candy, towers of cheese) since it will get used rather than remain as clutter. However, during the holidays many of us are already overwhelmed with food from holiday parties and large family dinners. Food gifts, particularly perishable ones, easily go to waste. If they are eaten it is often followed with feelings of guilt about overindulgence and weight-gain.

Luckily there are other wonderful Christmas gifts that you can give to people who don’t need more stuff. Here are 8 Christmas gift ideas that won’t add to anyone’s clutter.

Museum memberships

Museum memberships are the gift of entertainment all year. I’ve written an entire post about how museum memberships are the best gifts for families. They are also a great gift for couples and single people, too. Plus, the gift may be tax deductible.

Restaurant gift certificates

Giving a restaurant gift certificate is better than giving food because it can be saved until after the recipient has recovered from the gluttony of the holidays.

Tickets to the movies, a play, a concert or another event

If you know the person’s taste in entertainment well, the gift of tickets can be great. If you aren’t so sure about their preferences go with a flexible option like a gift card to a local movie theater that can be used for whatever film the person wants. Some live performance venues also offer flexible gift card options.

Maid service

A maid service visit is a great gift. Many people would love for someone to do their cleaning, but paying for a service can feel like a real indulgence since cleaning is something people can do themselves.

Gift certificate for a personal care service like a massage or mani-pedi

Speaking of indulgence, a gift certification for a massage or manicure is a lovely treat for the recipient.

Gift certificate for handyman services

Unless they are very handy and have plenty of free time, most homeowners have some small nagging projects that they’d like to have done around the house but don’t have the time and/or the expertise to take care of. A few hours of handyman services can help get a few of those things off the list.

An offer to babysit

If you know a parent, offering to babysit can be a great gift. It saves the family money and hassle.

The key to a meaningful offer to babysit is being specific. Saying, “I’ll babysit sometime” may not seem sincere. Instead, if you know of an upcoming event specifically offer to babysit for that concert, party, wedding, or whatever. If you don’t know anything, ask the parent “When do you need a babysitter in the next couple months? As a gift I’d like to take care of the kids for you.”

If you are feeling really generous you can pair this gift with one of the gift ideas above: “Here is a gift card to our local movie theatre, and I will watch the kids so you can actually use it.” That is an awesome gift.

Gift certificate to a store that doesn’t sell toilet paper

I love a Target gift card as much as the next girl, but I’m likely to use it to buy things I would have bought anyway like toilet paper and soap. If someone is experiencing financial hardship or is a new parent still reeling from the new expenses that come from it, a gift card to a practical store is great. If, however, you are trying to treat someone, your gift card will feel more special if it is to a store where it will likely go to a splurge: a clothing boutique, a high end cookware shop, an independent bookstore, an electronics store.

Sure, that last Christmas gift idea is going to result in a thing being bought, but if the person is picking hopefully it will at least be a thing that will be used and loved rather than feel like more clutter.

What do you want for Christmas?


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