Gift Ideas for Seniors

We all have someone on our gift list who is hard to shop for because they already have it all, or have limited space, such as someone in a nursing home or assisted living home. Most often, without being too nosy, you usually have an idea of their income as well. Here are a few gift ideas (many can be used year around, not just at Christmas time), of items they will really appreciate, want, use, and that won't take up a lot of space.


By mom-from-missouri from Plattsburg, MO

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December 18, 2004

It is not easy to find a gift for elderly friends and relatives. I give them stationary, a ball point pen and stamps. By Jean Sterling

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Despite claims that the economy has improved somewhat, it has worsened for those on fixed incomes and on social services. Cash gifts go uncounted unless tied to some traceable source.

Christmas tree with money

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I live in Senior Housing/low income housing. I do not have a car nor do a lot of the people that live here. Although we have a marvelous Council On Aging that has a bus for different trips there are still places that we are unable to go.

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November 20, 2009

When buying an appliance such as a coffee maker for a senior citizen, make sure it has an automatic shut off in case they forget to turn it off.

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Need a Christmas/birthday/anniversary gift idea for someone who is on medicare and often gets prescriptions? Get them a gift card to their pharmacy. If you give them a gift card for their pharmacy or a prepaid visa, they can use that to pay their copay on something they may otherwise go without.

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December 20, 2007

If you are wondering what to give older friends/relatives for the holidays, here is an idea: Consumable gifts are always welcome since seniors do not want to get things that will end up collecting dust or ending up in a yard sale!

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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

My grandpa just lost his wife (my grandma) three months ago. I don't know what to get him for Christmas now. When my grandma was alive I usually got them a gift card to go out to dinner somewhere nice. Any ideas of what to get him would be appreciated. Thank you.

April from Henderson


By Julie (Guest Post)
October 15, 20070 found this helpful

I think you should still get him the gift card and make a date night with him. He will be especially lonely around the holidays and by you going out to eat with him he will be reminded how much he is loved by those still on earth. God Bless!

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October 15, 20070 found this helpful

Do you live near enough that you could take him out to dinner yourself? I am sure that even though your grandmother is no longer alive, he would enjoy a meal out. Or perhaps he has a friend he could go with. I am sure whatever you choose he will appreciate.

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October 15, 20070 found this helpful

How about a supply of frozen dinners that he could just cook in the micro? Or a box of necessities like toilet paper, soap, laundry detergent, etc....Or a gift card to a grocery or drug store or for gasoline? The idea of taking him out to dinner is great. I see elderly people with their children at my favorite buffet all the time and they always look so happy!

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By Rosie (Guest Post)
October 16, 20070 found this helpful

You might take him out to dinner yourself, since he is now alone. He would appreciate the company and I think you will, too.

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October 16, 20070 found this helpful

How about a really nice fuzzy and soft blanket to wrap up in, when he is feeling cold and sad? A mug set with a ton of different coffee, tea or flavored syrups if he is set on one type of coffee. A cleaning service, once a month for a few months, or a year, or a coupon for you to do it.

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By dar (Guest Post)
October 16, 20071 found this helpful

There are so many things to do. The first thing, is he ready for winter? Does he need gloves etc. What does he need help with? If you have a husband or kids you could all make him a coupon book with ways to help. Say keep walks shoveled and dust the house mop floors. I am assuming at his age he does not drive but just in case he does a book with car washes and cleaning his car inside would tickle him I know my Dad was so happy with his before he passed away and then my mom wanted one.

You could also (getting back to your coupon book.) Promise a day to come in you and your family be it sister's, brother's children, etc. and clean for him. You could invite him for hot cooked meal's. You can make extra and freeze it and when you can take the frozen food over to him to warm up for a hot meal. This could all go into your coupon book.

Check to see if your area where you live has meal's on wheel's they are people who make sure senior citizen's get hot meals. They also have a program where someone comes into clean once a week. Check into that or if you are not strapped for cash you can hire a maid to clean.

Make sure he has rides for appointments. We have a system for old people that will pick older people up and take them to appointments and some places deliver groceries and prescriptions. Make sure he has help with his winter heating bills they have programs for senior's for gas and electric where if he can not make the full payments they will help.

Do all you can to help in these ways they are important. Most important spend time with him on Christmas. He will not want to be alone. Can he spend the night with someone? Right now he will want to talk. Take him to movies but wait until he seems ready but for now all these things he will need help with. And hugs do not forget to add hugs for him in your coupon book. I know I went way over what you asked but I know what he needs and he also needs everyone's help and love most of all.

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By beneda (Guest Post)
October 16, 20070 found this helpful

Does Your Grandpa like to read? How about a gift subscription for a magazine or even the local newspaper? Or if he has a sweet tooth you could do some baking and make up a basket of goodies. If he has a hobby get him something relating to that.

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October 16, 20071 found this helpful

How about a date with you? I bet that would really be appreciated, or have him for dinner once a week.

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By Jan (Guest Post)
October 16, 20070 found this helpful

My mom passed away last year so for Christmas we got my dad gift cards to places like Kentucky Fried Chicken, Applebees & his favorite Pizzaria. This way if you can't take him out as often as you'd like, he can bring take home from his favorite places on you! My dad loved this so much more than things he didn't need. Good Luck.

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By (Guest Post)
October 16, 20070 found this helpful

One of the best gifts is when we give of ourselves, if you live close enough, make & give a few coupons that will be good throughout the year when he wants to use them.
A hand-made coupon for a meal out; A coupon for a church social or other function, he'll be your guest; if he has a vehicle - a free car wash; a movie of his choice (popcorn included); a holiday dinner at your home; if he has a pet, a free pet grooming; a free hair cut; a trip to the local grocery store - you'll cart his groceries for him; an item that encourages him to keep up a hobby he likes; a free cleaning of any part of his home would encourage him as I'm sure his chores pile up with only one person to attend them (could include a flower or plant to spruce up his pad); think about what HE likes, even a magazine to encourage a hobby or interest keeps life interesting. I'm sure he'll appreciate your thoughtfullness more than you know.

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November 17, 2015

I have to buy to presents for the senior citizen part, one for a male and one for a female. I don't know what to get. I need help, but I really don't have a clue what to get.

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May 31, 2017

Making up some gift bags of items for people in a nursing home is sure to brighten the day of anyone receiving this thoughtful gift. This is a page about gift bags for seniors in nursing homes.

Gift Bag Stuffed with Gifts

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June 7, 2017

Choosing the perfect gift for an elderly parent is easy if you think about what they would really enjoy, such as special foods, a chore jar, books, and such. This is a page about Christmas gift ideas for elderly dad.

Christmas GiftS Being given to Elderly Dad

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