Holiday Gift Giving & Price Guide 2018

Holiday Gift Giving & Price Guide 2018

This posted has been updated to reflect current prices for Dec. 2018.

The holiday season can encourage a lot of gift-giving. From the mailman to your personal trainer, here are some price guide tips for gifting cash or presents when you want to thank those who have provided you a year-round service—or who you work with!

What to consider when choosing how to thank those people and how much you’ll spend:

Budget. If giving a holiday gift means going over budget or puts you in debt you wouldn’t be able to pay off in a timely manner, don’t feel obligated to go beyond your means.

Homemade gifts are always appreciated. Whether it’s within your budget to give a cash tip or purchase a gift, homemade gifts are a great way to show your appreciation.

Wondering if gift-giving is allowed or accepted during the holiday season? Specific businesses/establishments may have policies in place or gift-giving suggestions designed to make your holiday gifting easier. When in doubt, contact the company to double-check.

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Holiday Gift Giving and Price Guide (updated for 2018)

Mail Carriers / UPS & FedEx Drivers
Gift Price/Idea Guide: Perishable items/small gifts under $20/snack or beverages
Mail carriers typically make life less complicated by saving multiple trips to the post office (especially during the holiday season). If you have a lot of scheduled pick-ups or drop-offs, and you talk with your mail carrier or UPS driver daily, a small gift is appropriate. However, if you never see the same mail carrier from one day to the next, go ahead and skip this gift.  

Gift Price/Idea Guide: $5-$20 gift card/item and up
If you have a personal relationship with your child’s teacher it should be acceptable to give a gift card, but cap the cost at no more than around $20. A nice handwritten card is also sure to do the trick.  You can also have your child involved with this gift-giving in some way—whether he/she writes part of the ‘thank you’ card or creates something, it can be an extra meaningful gift.

There are always exceptions to this rule. Teachers who do double duty as coaches are likely to spend a lot of their extra time with your child. If this person is an absolute rock star and you have a close personal relationship, or they have taught some of your other children then absolutely, treat them as if they are a family member. 

Barber or Beauty Salon Staff
Gift Price/Idea Guide: $5-$20 gift card/item and up
If you’re a fan of giving a gift card or small gift to your stylist or barber, a good rule of thumb is to spend up to the cost of one haircut or salon visit. However, if you usually tip your stylist or barber frequently throughout the year you may skip the extra gift this month.

Personal Trainer or Massage Therapist
Gift Price/Idea Guide: $20 gift card/item and up
Personal trainers and massage therapists have the opportunity to have regular clientele, and if you’re one of those individiuals who sees a trainer or massage therapist frequently feel free to consider gifting something similar up to the cost of one session.

Gift Price/Idea Guide: $0-$10
Coworkers are tricky. Consider giving everyone in your department something very small, but thoughtful. A heartfelt note goes a long way. Want to give a gift to many coworkers? You can buy candy canes, tape them to cards and wrap ribbons around them. This is a sure-fire way to let your coworkers know you appreciate them without breaking the bank.

Gift Price/Idea Guide: $0-$30
Real gratitude (not sucking up) goes a long way. Spend some time thinking about what your boss or manager enjoys outside of work, and find a gift that fits his/her interests. While your line of work and salary make a huge difference here, think about how this person has helped further your career.

Where to Shop? There are a tons of stores out there that have really beautiful, high end merchandise that cost a fraction of the retail value. T.J. Maxx, Ross and Marshalls are great sources for gifts under $10, and most of their inventory is typically easy to find and affordable. As always, set yourself a budget prior to shopping and you will be surprised at how far your money can stretch.

Prefer to go online shopping? Search the internet for coupon codes and promo codes. Many stores still run holiday promos throughout the month. You will be surprised what you can find if you Google hard enough!

What are some holiday shopping tips and tricks you use to check off everyone on your list? Tell us in the comment section below!

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