I get it — life is hectic, holiday travel makes your head spin, and you can't possibly cram all the thoughtful gifts you would've already gotten if you had time into your carry-on bag, anyway. Get a load of these unique gift card ideas that would make the perfect present — because, obviously, you can't fit a helicopter under a Christmas tree any other way. Plastic gifts don't have to mean that the gift isn't awesome, and just because you're a dedicated procrastinator doesn't mean you can't still be super thoughtful.
But in all seriousness, loads of businesses offer gift cards with a range of delivery options. Obviously, the fastest method is email, but you can also get a wrapped box with complimentary swag from said business that looks just as legitimate under a tree as would a ready-to-wear gift. You can get your friends and family custom-made clothing, a wine tasting picnic on horseback, or a night out to see a favorite band, all in the form of a piece of paper or plastic. The options are truly impressive.
Here are 10 of the coolest and most unique gift cards that will wow even the most challenging gift recipient on your list. For the man or woman who has everything, let us begin.
1. Lasting Wall Art — Canvas Pop
Canvas Pop will turn your favorite Instagrams (and other photos too) into lasting canvas prints that will hang on your wall in style. Their gift cards, which start at $30, are the perfect gift for the person just starting to personalize his or her space.
Canvas Pop, $30 And Up
2. A Month Of New Fitness Experiences — ClassPass
ClassPass, if you haven't heard of it, is kind of like a yoga Groupon. ClassPass users can attend unlimited classes at participating workout studios, allowing three visits per-studio each month, for a flat rate that is a fraction of what one would pay to try all of their studios individually (the price varies by location). Try yoga, barre, and even indoor surfing. This is a perfect gift for the active but distractible person on your list.
ClassPass, Prices Vary
3. Custom Tailored Menswear — Proper Cloth
Proper Cloth makes sharp custom menswear for less than you'd pay for the same item, not made to the customer's exact-size at a department store. The stylish man on your list wants this gift card.
Proper Cloth, Choose Your Own Price
4. A Charitable Donation — TisBest
Let your loved ones donate to their most valued charities through TisBest. Your friends and family can give to up to three of the hundreds of charities that work with TisBest. Its partner charities range from the ASPCA to UNICEF to Greenpeace. This is the best ever kind of re-gifting.
TisBest, $10 And Up
5. A Year Of Outdoor Adventures — National Park Service
Give the gift of lasting memories in the form of the America The Beautiful National Park Annual Pass from the National Park Service. This card covers entry fees to more than 2,000 parks, recreation areas, and national wildlife refuges. This gift is perfect for the explorer on your list.
America The Beautiful Annual Pass, $80
6. A Wholesome Cooking Class — Sur La Table
Sur La Table offers gift cards and cooking classes that are offered in cities across the country, which is just plain awesome. Sure, your mom could spend this gift card on a spatula, I guess, but wouldn't it be that much cooler if she could take a class on how to make amazing Korean cuisine?!
Sur La Table Gift Card, $10-$500
7. A Home Software Studio — Adobe Creative Cloud
So, this one isn't exactly a gift card, per se, but you can buy it online and have it delivered instantly, so it counts! Adobe switched from selling its apps — like PhotoShop, InDesign, and Premiere — for a one-time fee to a subscription model a few years ago, so you can give the gift of production value to the little creator on your list!
Adobe Creative Cloud, $50/month
8. A Once In A Lifetime Experience — Cloud 9
Cloud 9 lets its customers in on some of the best adventures in a given area — from ziplines to helicopter tours and scenic cruises, you can give your friends and family the gift of a once in a lifetime experience.
Cloud 9 experiences, $50-$2,000
9. Handmade Goods — Etsy
Not everybody is a DIY guru, but just about everyone can get behind a handmade touch around the home. Let your loved ones pick out their personal favorites among the many handmade items on Etsy with an Etsy gift card.
10. A Night Out To See A Favorite Band — Ticketmaster
Who doesn't love a good concert?! With a Ticketmaster gift card, your friend can get the VIP treatment with already-paid-for tickets when their favorite band comes to town.
Looking for more holiday cheer? Check out Bustle on YouTube.
Images: tales of a wandering youkai/Flickr; 401(K) 2012/Flickr Canvas Pop; gbsk/Flickr; Proper Cloth; srdjanstojiljkovic/Flickr; jfdervin/Flickr; Adobe; Cloud 9; pillowmeRustic/Etsy; Lettuce/Facebook