birthday gift ideas

10 Birthday Gift Ideas That Don’t Cost Money

Birthdays come with a little pressure to buy the perfect that the person will remember until the birthday or event. The pressure is greater if you are trying to live on a budget. Skipping a birthday party because you do not have the perfect gift is not the solution. Instead, explore birthday gift ideas that do not cost money.

While reading the list, you will discover that some gifts are free while others cost something else. For instance, the gifts will cost your time, effort, and creativity. Let us now look at some of the gifts you can consider this year.

1. Free lessons

Do you have a special skill that the recipient is interested in? Give them free lessons as a birthday gift. For instance, you can teach them a new recipe, play a musical instrument, garden, or play a sport. You will give them your time and skill at the same time, which may motivate them to develop their skill further. Be willing to go further after the birthday to help them master the new skill for a lasting impact.

2. Services

Sometimes we look too far for birthday gift ideas while we are staring at them. If your parent’s or a parent’s birthday is around the corner, plan to spend a few days or just a day with them and do something. For instance, you can clean, garden, mow the grass, or just babysit the young ones. You can also offer to do laundry or dishes every day for a week or a month. You give the person time to rest and enjoy their favorite things.

3. Breakfast in bed

This may sound old and common but it still works. The little things we ignore can spark a new love in your relationship. Do not stop offering your partner breakfast in bed, especially on his or her birthday. This also works for other family members. Prepare their best breakfast before they can get up and serve it in bed. You can do it for a day or week if possible.

4. Art

Are you a creative or an artist? Use your gift to make something special. It may cost you a little to buy materials for a painting or drawing but you probably have them already. Sing a new song, make music, or write a poem for the person. An alternative is to create a handmade birthday card with a special message. Handwritten cards and notes are special too.

5. Create new memories

Birthdays make people reflect on their past and celebrate their progress. Add to the reflection while creating new memories at the same time. For instance, you can use old photos to tell their story. Alternatively, you can make videos with their friends and family members. Allow everyone to share his or her thoughts and favorite memories with the person. The videos and photos may outlast every other gift that you could buy.

6. Cook their favorite meal

Everyone has a special meal that just makes his or her day. You may not have enough money to buy the meal in the restaurant. However, if you are a good cook, you can prepare it at home. You do not even need to live with the person. Offer to visit them and cook. If we are talking about your significant other, prepare the meal together. Cooking the meal could also be the special free lesson that you offer on a birthday.

7. Explore the outdoors together

The outdoors offers tons of activities that make birthdays memorable without spending much. You just need to get to the venue, which could be a walking distance of your home. For instance, you can go on a road trip, hiking, skiing, or kayaking together. You can also go fishing, explore the woods, or just ride bikes together.

Do you have a favorite sport in common? A birthday is a perfect day to enjoy it together. You can also learn a new sport together that will create new bonding opportunities in the future. Outdoor activities are perfect when celebrating a birthday together as a family. Everybody has lots of fun without thinking about expensive birthday gift ideas.

8. Play indoor games

We understand that outdoor games are not everyone. If the person likes to stay indoors, explore new games. We have so many games now in the market that will make a game night fun. The traditional board games are still fun. Allow them to choose the games so that they can enjoy their day.

9. Regift

Have you received a gift before that you could not use or did not need? Regifting is always a great idea for dealing with unwanted gifts. It may not be in bad shape or something cheap. You just do not need the item or it does not fit. Instead of piling it with trash items, give it away to a person that needs it on his or her birthday. Just repackage the item and give it as a new gift if it matches the person’s needs and lifestyle.

10. Movie night

A movie night is always fun for a couple or family. Most families are subscribed to movie channels. Create time to watch the person’s favorite movie or TV series with them. If you are celebrating a kid’s birthday, invite their friends and allow them to pick their favorite movie and snacks. A movie night can last as long as you want it when you are at home.


Giving the most memorable gifts does not always mean that you spend all your money or exceed your budget. We have shared birthday gift ideas that will cost you time and presence instead of money. You will discover that some people treasure such gifts more than random gifts from stores. However, you can combine these gifts from others from gift stores around you whenever you can.

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