Dad's Day On A Budget

Ways to save this Father’s Day

Fathers DayThere was a time when most Father’s Day gifts were either a tie or a collect phone call from the kids. (If you’re under the age of 30, you can ask your parents what a collect call was.) Nowadays, however, it’s become big business, with the National Retail Federation estimating some $12.7 billion being spent on gifts in 2015.

While getting dad a coffee table that serves as an actual game controller, or maybe a week on a yacht would be pretty fantastic, those aren’t realistic options for most people. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to get dad something nice and thoughtful without spending a ton of money.

Around $10

You never know when dad might need a can opener...or knife...or screwdriver...or ruler...or wrench...or any other of the 11 different tools on this 11-in-1 multitool. Also: it's the size of a credit card, so it's easy to carry.

If dad likes to grill, these skewers give him a lot of "flexibility" when it comes to his kabobs, and these claws for pulling pork can help save his fingers from burns. And a serious griller clearly needs a serious grilling apron so he has everything at the ready (including a frosty beverage).

Over at the Personalization Mall, they have "Loving heart pocket tokens" that you can personalize with a short message to let him know how much he means to you. It's smaller than a quarter, making it a great memento for dads who are getting ready to deploy.

Around $20

Help dad keep his bar looking good with some old timey bar glasses, a set of "DAD" whiskey stones, or an unusual pirate-themed corkscrew.

Beards might be in style, but military dads have to keep themselves well groomed. Don't let him use some cheap can of shaving cream—get him some high quality shaving soap, such as those offered by Truefitt & Hill. If he has super-tough stubble, Bluebeard's Revenge is an award-winning brand that will make it easier to shave with more use. His face will thank you.

For the geek at heart, a Flux Capacitor car charger won't send him back to the future, but will keep his gadgets ready to go. If he's more a gamer geek, then how about some flasks that look like old NES cartridges?

Around $50

Having a dead cellphone battery is always annoying, but even more so when there is no electrical outlet handy. The Crankerator will charge his phone while getting his arm a light workout, making it a great gift for dads who are always on the go.

Maybe your dad is the snacking type? If so, then a personalized Bucket of Man Snacks would be perfect. Or perhaps he'd like to make his own bacon—which would be fine, because Williams-Sonoma has a kit for that.

For those who enjoy their tech, either a Roku or Chromecast will let him stream straight to the TV. Or let him create his own video content from the air with an affordable and fun drone.

So while, sure, getting him a Millennium Falcon-turned-bass-guitar might be epic (and take three months to get), getting one of these more-affordable options will still make it a Father’s Day to remember.

Mark Dye

About the author: Mark Dye

Mark Dye has been writing articles, recording podcasts, and putting together books on personal finance for nearly a decade. His work has been recognized by the American Bankers Association and the Institute for Financial Literacy, and received an 2011 APEX Grand Award for Writing. Follow Mark on Google+.

Contact: Mark Dye


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