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Gifts that keep on giving

Here are some ideas for presents that will save the recipients money.

By Teresa Mears Dec 22, 2009 5:33PM

We’ve been talking throughout the holiday season on how to save money on holiday gifts. How about gifts that save the recipients money? And if you can regift any of these items, so much the better.


Here’s Kiplinger Personal Finance magazine’s list of 12 gifts that save money for the recipients:

  • Movie rental subscription to a service such as Netflix.
  • Espresso machine, so your friends and family can make their own lattes at home.
  • A smart power strip.
  • Cooking classes.
  • AAA membership.
  • At-home fitness equipment.
  • National Park visitors’ pass.
  • Warehouse club membership.
  • Savings or investment account.
  • The perfect carry-on bag, to avoid checked-bag fees.
  • A home-energy monitor.
  • A subscription to Kiplinger’s magazine (or any other good personal-finance magazine).

Several other personal-finance bloggers also had ideas for gifts that save the recipients money.

Liz Pulliam Weston, MSN Money columnist, listed five gifts that save people money: a better carry-on bag; sandwich and snack wraps; rechargeable batteries; a subscription to Shop Smart, the new Consumer Reports shopping magazine; and a better crock pot.


Erin Huffstetler, at the guide to Frugal Living, suggested in her list of gifts that save money a newspaper subscription, CFL bulbs, coupon books and reusable shopping bags, a water bottle and a water filter, among other things.

Liz Kay at the Baltimore Sun’s Consuming Interests blog had some additional ideas, including a kitchen herb garden and a museum subscription or annual pass.


Jeffrey Strain at The Street noted that many gifts actually cost the recipient money. An iPod, for example, requires the recipient to spend money on music. His suggestions for gifts that keep giving include a basic tool kit, a fruit tree or other food plant, or a coffee maker and thermos.


What do you think? Have you given any gifts that keep on giving? Do you find these good suggestions and do you have additional ideas?


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