Tips & Tricks

Last-minute Christmas gift ideas for every budget

Whether it’s a present for mum, dad, your flatmate or neighbour, we've got you covered — just in the nick of time!

by Marina on 21 December 2019
Last-minute Christmas gift ideas for every budget

The holiday season can be a stressful time of year. You might be preparing to host a Christmas Eve dinner for friends and family. Or you could be trying to figure out how to fit all 12 of your out-of-town relatives into your flat! While you’re busy planning out all those holiday details and logistics, it’s easy to forget to buy that gift for someone important on your Christmas list. We get it — it happens to the best of us.

That’s why we have you covered with some practical last-minute gift ideas for just about everyone in your life. Whether it’s for a holiday party or a Secret Santa gift exchange with friends, we’ve done some digging for the top gift ideas for every budget!


Gifts £5 or under

It’s common for many circles of friends to do a Secret Santa gift exchange for a mutually-agreed upon amount. Usually, this limit isn’t an outrageous figure, making it easier for as many people as possible to participate. So if you’re looking for a relatively inexpensive present for a colleague or friend, why not make something from the heart? DIYs are a fantastic gift option as they’re usually cheap to do yet an incredibly thoughtful present that’s sure to be appreciated. Many of the materials you might already have lying around your home, which means you won’t have to spend a lot on supplies! Some unique DIY gift ideas could be:

  • video montage or framed photo collage
  • flavoured homemade butter or sea salt
  • decorative throw pillow or blanket
  • perfume, cologne or body spray
  • favourite memories scrapbook
  • delicious seasonal dessert
  • scented mason jar candles
  • something sewn


Gifts £10 or under

Your kind neighbours are definitely important people to shop for — but it can be easy to forget to buy them a little something with all the goings-on at this time of year. So here are some affordable presents for that person who’s always shoveling your driveway, holding your parcels or looking after your home and pets while you’re away:

  • vintage-style jewelry box
  • homemade spa kit
  • mini waffle maker
  • herb garden kit


Gifts £15 or under

If you’re shopping for a picky sibling, a flatmate who has everything, or that aunt of yours with an eclectic taste, it can be difficult to rack your brain for good ideas. So we’ve done the thinking for you! You can’t go wrong with one of these unique yet low-cost ideas for the more difficult-to-shop-for people on your list:

  • digital barbecue fork
  • Bluetooth tracker
  • tabletop wine rack
  • coffee table book
  • hot sauce gift set
  • porcelain teapot


Gifts £20 or under

Who would we be without our nearest and dearest friends? Your best friend deserves something meaningful that will help them think of you whenever they use or see the present you gifted them. Whether they have a green thumb or are a wine lover, we have just the gift options for you. The best part is you can quickly find (or make) some of these presents...and they all fall within the £20 range!

  • hexagonal succulent planter set
  • electric wine bottle opener
  • homemade vanilla extract
  • aromatherapy diffuser
  • smart light bulb


Gifts £50 or under

For the very special people in your life like mum, dad or partner, you want to get them something extra lovely — but it doesn’t mean you have to break the bank to impress them. You can easily pick up one of the following present ideas at your nearest local home store or online. You’ll bring a smile to their face… and your wallet will thank you later:

  • homebrew craft beer making kit
  • espresso machine
  • ice cream maker
  • salami bouquet
  • smart speakers
  • coffee gift set


Holiday shopping at the eleventh hour can be quite chaotic and can get very disorganized really fast. It’s easy to overspend this month — especially if you didn’t plan ahead and are now frantically buying things in the nick of time. To make sure you don’t wake up to a nasty surprise on Christmas morning when you realise how much you actually spent, take Monese on your last-minute Christmas shopping spree. With the budgeting feature on your app, you’ll be able to set a limit before you head out on the hunt for any holiday presents you still have left to buy. You also have the spending overview feature, which will show you exactly where you’ve spent your money once you’ve finished making all your purchases.

With these budget-friendly ideas and Monese by your side, no one on your shopping list will be forgotten this holiday. We’d love to check out some of your Christmas pictures featuring your Monese card. Send your photos to our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and tell us all about how Monese helped you with your last-minute shopping.

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Marina Content & Community Manager
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