Thoughtful gift ideas for seniors

Person holding gift bags with Christmas tree in background

Buying Christmas gifts for seniors or grandparents can be a thoughtful and rewarding experience. But it can also be difficult! When buying gifts for seniors or grandparents in your life, think about your loved one’s hobbies, interests and preferences.

Remember to also consider their health conditions and any limitations they may have when selecting a gift.

Here are some tips and items to help you choose the perfect gift:

Personal items

Seniors often appreciate practical gifts that make their daily lives easier.

  • Reading glasses or magnifying glass
  • Cozy blankets
  • Heated throws
  • Comfortable slippers or house shoes
  • Ergonomic tools designed for seniors

Handmade and Personalized Items

  • Personalized gifts add a special touch.
  • Photobook or memory album
  • Framed family photo
  • Birdhouse or feeder
  • Homemade jam, salsa or another tasty treat
  • Bookmarks
  • A written story, poem or song about the person
  • Painted or sculpted potter or garden stepping stone
  • Wall hangings, ornaments, magnets or window suncatcher
  • Engraved jewelry
  • Monogrammed items
  • Personalized calendar

Home Brighteners

Items that help feel their residence feel like home are always a good option.

  • A houseplant or potted flowers
  • Bath towels
  • Decorative throw pillows
  • Card games, puzzles or board games
  • Materials for a favorite hobby like knitting, reading, music or gardening
  • One-cup coffee maker or Keurig


If the senior in your life is tech-savvy, consider gadgets that enhance their daily life.

  • Tablet/iPad or e-reader/Kindle
  • Fitness tracker such as a Fitbit or Apple Watch
  • Smartphone
  • Digital photo frame
  • Bluetooth speaker
  • Headphones
  • Doorbell camera system such as the Ring camera

Subscriptions and more

  • Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, Peacock, Max subscription
  • Magazine subscription
  • membership
  • Flower or book of the month subscription
  • Chocolate subscription box
  • MasterClass subscription for online learning
  • Dollar Shave Club subscription
  • Gift cards to their favorite restaurants
  • Fillable life storybook
  • Once-a-month lunch dates

For nursing home residents

Seniors living in a nursing home may have specialized needs. Consider both practical and fun items. You can also check out our list of nursing home necessities for additional ideas.

  • A basket with their favorite baked goods and treats
  • Sudoku, crossword or word search books
  • Adult coloring books and colored pencils or pens
  • Large-print books or audiobooks
  • Lap blanket
  • Armchair caddy
  • Slipper socks
  • Tennis shoes
  • Clothing, such as sweaters, sweatshirts, sweatpants and T-shirts
  • Lotion or other toiletries

Bonus gift ideas

  • Consider making a donation to an organization whose mission is important to you and your family. Ask your family members for a list of favorite charities, or research some non profit groups you could support.

Whatever gift you give this holiday season, remember that the gift of your time is the best gift of all.

Check out more holiday stories: Resources

Related resources

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