Experience Gift Ideas for a Zero Waste Holiday Season
This post is all about the best experience gift ideas I could find on the interwebs for you!
Alright, the holidays have crept up, and it’s time to finish all of our holiday shopping, y’all! I’ve suggested some sustainable gift ideas and handmade gift ideas in previous blog posts, but today I want to focus on my favorite kind of gift: experience gifts! When I can, I offer my loved ones experiences, because I love giving them a unique moment and memory or a new skill, AND it comes with no waste. The perfect zero waste gift, right?!
In the past, I’ve been a real grump about how commercialized and materialistic the holidays have become. However, this year I’ve decided to embrace thoughtful and intentional gift giving. Everyone wants to give around the holidays. Honestly, that is part of the fun! So, instead of discouraging buying this year, I hope to encourage everyone to purchase sustainable and low waste gifts. That means, the more experience gifts the better! If you haven’t given an experience in the past, I hope this list of experiences can help direct you to the perfect gift for your loved one!
The Gift of Relaxation
Who doesn’t love a nice deep tissue massage, facial, or acupuncture session? Treating your loved ones to a luxurious spa experience will help them feel rejuvenated after the busy holiday season and jumpstart them into the new year. Last year, I gave Sebastian a foot massage from a local spa in our town, and he loved it so much! The holiday season can be a stressful time for people. With traveling, scheduling family time, and cooking, I know that anyone would love a relaxing day at a spa to sum up the season!
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The Gift of Learning
This experience gift often keeps on giving. Some of my favorite learning experiences I’ve given include cooking classes, pottery classes, foraging courses, photography classes, and music lessons. With these experiences, your loved one will leave with a new skill they can keep forever. Last year, my brother and sister gave Vasco a children’s art class. He had so much fun and was able to bring back adorable pieces of artwork. We also gave my mom a cooking class a couple of years ago, and we had so much fun learning to cook new dishes with her. So, do some googling and see what sort of courses you can find locally to gift! I think you’ll be surprised to see the variety of classes available.
You could also gift an online course rather than a local class. This is a great option if you know there’s a really specific niche that will interest your friend or family member and you can’t source the education locally. I would really love to recommend my friend Heidi’s online course for gifting!
This year, my friend Heidi finished creating her beginner’s herbalism course. I have taken the online course and learned so much about natural home remedies that I can use on a daily basis. The course is wide ranging from tinctures that help colds to tea blends for heart health. I absolutely love Heidi’s teaching style. She makes the giant topic of herbalism more digestible by breaking it down into easy to follow sections complete with videos and a Facebook group for discussion. For any of your friends or loved ones interested in creating more natural home remedies, I highly recommend gifting this course to them.
Heidi also has a course about Natural Soap Making which I haven’t taken myself but am sure is full of great information! Another great option for gifting this year.
Another fun learning gift for your favorite bookworm – an audiobook subscription! I really love using Audible for purchasing audiobooks. You could gift your friend or family member two or three month’s subscription to Audible so they could listen to their favorite new reads on the go!
The Gift of Adventure
Adventurous experiences provide your friends and family with an adrenaline rush and a chance to be brave! These adventures can include skydiving, theme park passes, zip lining, rock climbing, skiing passes, or a hot air ballon or helicopter ride. Some of my friends received indoor skydiving passes for their anniversary last year, and they had so much fun. I gifted Sebastian season passes to Six Flags one year as well! Often, these experiences can offer your loved ones a once in a lifetime opportunity that they wouldn’t always pursue themselves.
The Gift of Exercise
For my sister’s birthday this year, I gave her credits for ClassPass. ClassPass gives you the option of choosing exercise classes from multiple gyms rather than choosing one specific membership. Therefore, she can try all of the yoga studios before committing to one! You could also gift a trapeze class, dance class, or other sporting class. This would be a great gift for all of the athletic people you have in your life.
The Gift of the Arts
Who doesn’t enjoy going to see their favorite band live or visiting an interesting museum they haven’t seen before? CityPASS offers entry into multiple museums and attractions in a given city. Often, entry for one single attraction costs up to $25, but CityPASS groups together multiple attractions for one single price. This could be a game changer for your favorite museum goer! You could also gift movie tickets, comedy show tickets, or tickets to a local theatre production.
The Gift of Cuisine
You can never go wrong with a gift card to your loved one’s favorite restaurant. Or rather, gifting a gift card to a restaurant they have never tried before! I know I often get stuck going to the same places over and over again. Add some variety to your loved one’s culinary experience by giving them a new restaurant gift card. In addition, I also enjoy gifting wine or beer tastings if you have any local wineries or breweries.
The Gift of Travel
Airbnb gift cards are an easy way to gift an experience of your loved one’s choosing. With this gift, they can opt to go wherever they want to go. The options are limitless, and the price limit can be any range you choose. Furthermore, Airbnb also offers experiences on their site geared towards specific cities. *If you sign up for Airbnb with my link right here, you get $40 off your first home booking.* Alternatively, check out farmstayus.com to find a unique family experience for someone in your life. During a farm stay, your loved one can experience a range of activities, from taking care of livestock, to gardening, to learning how to can vegetables!
Of course, I have only brushed the surface of experience gift options. Think about what your friends and family enjoy, and try to choose an experience gift geared towards their personalities. I hope this list gives you inspiration and plenty of options to get you started! I can’t wait for my loved ones to try out the new experiences I plan to give to them this year! Happy holidays to all!
What is your favorite experience gift to gift for a zero waste holiday season?!