You've heard time and time again that when it comes to Christmas gifts, people don't want more stuff in their lives — they just want something small to show you're thinking of them. But honestly, we think that's only half true.
Sure, no one wants more crap they won't use in their house, but if you wanted to get them, say, the chance to have Serena Williams teach them tennis, they wouldn't exactly say no.
And that's why the experience gift is one of the best you can give. It's a combination of thinking about the recipient's interests while also giving them something to do — a new hobby to try or skill to improve.
We've pulled together some of the greatest experiences you can give as gifts this holiday season — check them out and see if there isn't something there for someone on your list.
This site is offering up big names teaching hot topics, like Annie Leibovitz on photography, Serena Williams teaching tennis and (soon) Kevin Spacey teaching acting. The time investment varies depending on the topic (and celebrity), but each class is $90, and easy to give as a gift.
If you have teens in the house, unquestionably they're already eyeing the keys to the car. This program from Toyota gives kids access to a go-kart track, along with instructors, to instill a love for driving starting at age 10. It also teaches safe ways to act behind the wheel (but you don't have to tell them that). Programs are $79 + HST for a half day.
You may not be too excited about giving an app as a present, but Headspace has gained accolades for helping even the least mindfulness-oriented people get into meditation. A yearly subscription is $7.99 (U.S.), and gives access to all of the courses, including those specific for pregnancy, creativity or generosity, to name just a few options.
The Woven Wolf
Here's a chance to do two great things at once. The Make Den, a Toronto craft studio, is running a Kickstarter in order to offer sewing and craft tutorials online — and if you donate a minimum of $25 to it, you'll receive one of the tutorials for free — perfect for the wannabe crafter in your life.
Alright, this does technically qualify as giving something
, but when it's food, we consider that an experience in and of itself. This new online marketplace for bakeries is currently live in Toronto, but spreading to other cities very soon. It offers delivery of baked goods from a variety of shops within 90 minutes of ordering — or you can pre-order for the future.
This site offers the chance to create a personalized scent based on a number of characteristics (and ingredients). While you could do this for someone, wouldn't it be nice to give them a chance to make their own individual fragrance? Just be sure to buy a gift card that will cover it — $100 should be enough.
The hundreds of sites across the country on offer via Parks Canada can be experienced through a gift certificate, whether it's a family pass ($136.40) for up to seven people going to a national park, national marine conservation area or national historic site, or a season's pass to a favourite national park (prices vary).
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