Tue | Oct 16, 2018

Seven tips to help you choose the right gift

Published:Monday | December 11, 2017 | 12:00 AM

With the holidays fast approaching, many are mulling over what to get their mother, father, husband, niece or girlfriend this Christmas.

Choosing the right gift for someone at Christmas can be a complicated task, as there are several factors one will have to consider. It choosing the 'right gift', it has to be something that communicates the right message.

Gifts can help write the narrative; for example, a bottle of Pinot Noir from Bordeaux for the wine connoisseur; a jersey with their favourite player's name on it for the sports fanatic, or a book for the well-read. Gifts can be statements of deep emotion and finding the gift that evokes the desired emotion is the ultimate test when deliberating. So to help you along in your search for the perfect gift, here are seven tips to help you out this 'gift giving season'.

- Make it interesting: This is for the person who may already have an idea of what to get, because the intended recipient has been lamenting about the item for the last three months. Still, make an effort in handing over the gift in a fun way. Make it an event. Send your loved one on a scavenger hunt or get creative or wacky with the wrapping - there's nothing more fun than unwrapping a gift, even as an adult.

- Break it down: Create a list of all the things the person is interested in, and use that as a guide to analyse your approach in choosing a gift. This way, you'll figure out what they already have, what needs have changed, and what's important to the individual.

- Nostalgia an option: Maybe your husband grew up in the video game era of Atari and Super Nintendo, then a classic game console actually carries more meaning than you could ever imagine. Choosing a gift that awakens the good memories carries ample value in comparison to a more contemporary gift item.

- What the person needs: Sometimes choosing a gift is easier than you think. Your father is a workaholic and rarely has time to sit back and relax. This can be an opportunity to plan a weekend and drive down to the south coast, or make a quick run to the beach for fish and festival. Providing an experience is always a go-to gift option, and provides an opportunity to bond and build relationships.

- Investigate: Take to Instagram or Facebook if the person you're shopping for regularly shares their thoughts and hopes on social media. Perusing your friend's page to see what they're interests are can provide clues to what their ultimate gift item might be.

- Charity: OK, so your uncle isn't in need of anything and actually does most of the gift giving and spoils his nieces and nephews. Try and find something he is passionate about and help in that area. It could be feeding the homeless, helping with his garden of roses, or even washing his car. Charity comes in various forms and finding the right channel to show your love and appreciation is key.

- Something from the heart: Relationships don't always go the way we want them to. A heartfelt note to your wife after a rough period can be a gift in itself. Forgiveness, gratitude, and expressions of love are welcome in the arena of gift giving, and a hug with a note will always be cherished.