No doubt you will have seen the plethora of online gift guides coming at you from every which way. I know I have! Which is why I thought it would be fun to share an alternative Christmas presents post. I have also managed to snaffle you an offer or two to help your pocket – I’m that kind of girl!
My thinking is that getting alternative Christmas presents means that you can step away from the usual smellies, candles and socks and give something more memorable. Something which lasts longer than the festive period and gives someone something to look forward to. Although I am partial to a smellie or two (because I don’t buy them for myself) I prefer to receive something I can experience over things which will end up in cupboard or in the jumble.
Alternative Christmas Presents
It might seem a bit daunting going out and trying to choose something different for someone for alternative Christmas presents, which is why I am going to share a variety of things with you, from subscription boxes, to experiences and some indoor stuff as well. I hope that it will spark some ideas and help you to make Christmas last that little bit longer for your family and friends.
A different kind of subscription box
I am sure that you are all very aware of the good old make-up or well-being subscription boxes which are on the market and while they might be your thing, to me they are more stuff. So when I found out about Buckt, I was really pleased. It is a monthly subscription box for activities around Manchester (they are in Birmingham too) where you receive five activities to do within two months of the date of the box. It is for you and one other (of your choosing, they can be different people for each activity) so you’re sharing the experience too.
I recently got to give axe throwing a go (you’ll have spotted it if you follow me on Instagram) with the Buckt crew and it was brilliant. I loved that it was something new and different to do during the week. Plus, the bonus is that you don’t have to come up with the ideas as the fab team at Buckt do the leg work for you. Unlike many subscription things, the value of the box is huge! On average each box is worth about £100 and there is nothing else to pay over the monthly amount of £25 (remember, that’s for two people!), you can also cancel at any time even after the first box.
I am partnering with them next year so have snaffled a cheeky 50% discount for you for your first order, meaning that a duo box is only £12.50. I would love to receive this as a present as it is something to look forward to in January. To the website and add the code: URBANWANDERER (and when you get asked about how you find it, add my name and I get a cheeky £10)
Last year was the first time that I tried Go Ape and I loved it! There are so many around the country and I think it is a brilliant present for anyone – one of the girls there when we went was pretty nervous and she came off feeling amazing for doing it! I only recently found out that you can buy Go Ape vouchers to gift people. Again, this is something a lot more memorable than a pair of socks and it’s not just because of the amount of bark you’ll be pulling out of your pants after a bum land off the sip slide!
You’d also be surprised that gifting memories rather than things can be as cheap as a tenner – perfect for the office Secret Santa present too. I am actually already planning another trip to the Buxton Go Ape as they have recent changed the course and I am excited to check it out. Oh and Delamere and Rivington…
There are currently some pretty good discounts going on over at Go Ape HQ and I have a referral link you can use to make the most of it – buy your Go Ape vouchers here.
Get on a plane
I don’t mean spending a fortune on sending someone on a far away journey, but they will get to feel the luxury of Concorde. Two years ago, we bought a tour of the Concorde and Nimrod tour at Manchester Airport for my parents and they loved it so much they returned the favour last year.
For £35 for the combined ticket and a three-hour visit, it is well worth the money. Plus, you can look around the other planes in the compound and watch the flights taking off from the viewing area – totally recommend taking a picnic for that.
The Manchester Concorde is the only one where you can go inside and sit on the Jasper Conran leather seats and experience the space as a passenger would. The stories told by the team bring the experience to life and they are happy to answer any questions you might have (of which I had many!) They are doing some updates to the plane soon so we are looking at returning for another visit.
Whether you are in or around Manchester or not, you can take your recipient on a day trip to somewhere different. It doesn’t have to cost the earth and if you travel regularly, I would totally recommend getting a Two Together discount card, as you get a third off each journey you take together.
For local Manchester folk, you can check out my post on 5 Day Trips from Manchester by Train to get you started.
We love taking day trips and you can make it even more exciting by planning the activities and making it into a bit of a treasure hunt. I created a mystery pack for Jit the other year and we spent the day exploring Leeds. For train prices, I use Trainline to work out the best times and prices for my budget.
Alternative Christmas Presents and Last Minute Gifts
So there are a few alternative Christmas presents to get you started. I know you’ll be able to come up with more, but if you’d like some gift ideas for the eco minded, then check out my post from last year for some ideas.
Where gift vouchers used to be the rubbish presents, I think there is a lot to be said about them these days. They are far better than the book token or card for New Look as you can give something well thought out, suitable for the recipient and will be more than something which ends up in the cupboard. Remember, experiences last far longer than things do!
Do you enjoy giving and receiving alternative Christmas presents?
What has been the best one you have received so far and what will you be gifting this season?
Disclosure: The links for Buckt and Go Ape are referral links, which mean I get a little something in return (at no cost to you) I only work with and promote products and organisations which I use myself. All comments, photos and opinions are honest and my own – unless otherwise stated.