There is a silver lining for all those who are having a hard time coping with the pandemic. Yes, everyone is locked in, and everyone’s lives are riddled with uncertainties, but COVID-19 has also forced people to pause, take a step back and rethink much of what they thought was normal before.
It has made people spend more time with themselves and more time with nature, and as a result, many have begun to appreciate the simpler way of life.
A 2020 global survey by Accenture showed that consumers have dramatically evolved and that 60% reported making more environment-friendly, sustainable, or ethical purchases since the pandemic. The same study also shows that nine out of 10 were likely to continue doing so.
This study indicates that many are becoming more aware and concerned about the environment and sustainable living.
Hence, it is high time that gifting turns sustainable too.
Gifting is important. It shows the people in your life that you appreciate them. However, normally, sustainability is the last thing on anyone’s mind when shopping for gifts. Nevertheless, plastic decorative items, non-biodegradable gifts, plastic gift wrapping, and such are things that must be reconsidered because of the negative impact they have on the environment.
The holidays are a time when most gifts are exchanged. So, what better time to consider gifts that are sustainable and conserve the planet than during the holiday gifting season? And what better time to give these gifts to the people who have made a difference in your life in some way, knowing that they will love these gifts and use them for years to come?
Benefits of Sustainable Gifts for the Holidays
Here are a few of the benefits of sustainable gifts that will make you feel good about giving but at the same time will keep your ecological footprint down:
- They are good for the planet- It seems very obvious, but it is worth saying again! Sustainably produced products are excellent for the planet.
- They show you care- Giving sustainable gifts shows you and your company in a positive light. And good values leave a good impression.
- They are exclusive- Most companies do not think about giving eco-friendly gifts, and hence in that respect, your gift will stand out from the rest.
- They encourage local arts and crafts- Picking up gifts that local artisans sustainably make and encouraging age-old handicrafts is always a great way to say you care. But even better, these kinds of gifts are also highly prized.
And finally, think about the packaging…
Packaging may play a huge part in the presentation and excitement of receiving a gift, but it does not have to be destructive to the environment. It can still be beautiful, eco-friendly, and sustainable.
Six Sustainable Gifting Ideas to Enrich Your Holiday Gifting Experience
Let’s look at some sustainable gift ideas that are gaining popularity
1. Plants and flowers
Who does not like a burst of fresh green in their homes- especially when it is dull and dreary outside? Potted plants make some of the best gifts. You could even extend it to flowering plants or even fruit and vegetable plants that people can plant in their gardens. And the bonus is that plants have a cleaning effect on the environment and are as eco-friendly as they come. Giving a plant as a gift also allows the recipient to enjoy it for years.
Flowers, too, make beautiful gifts. You could choose from flowers that are grown locally and sustainably in your area.
2. Homemade treats
The holidays are an excellent time for homemade delectables. The very fact that it is homemade will bring warmth to the heart of the receiver. You could find a local baker or a food artisan and patronize their business. Brownies, jams, honey, dry fruit, pickles, etc., always make welcome and useful gifts. Gifting food items makes the gift more personal as well as easy on the environment.
3. Gift a service
Gifting a service, especially during the holidays, can be a lot of fun. You could gift a class- e.g., yoga or a dance class. You could also gift services like a massage or a manicure/pedicure. Perhaps, you can even consider something utilitarian like a single house-cleaning service or some babysitting sessions.
These are very personal gifts, and they create memorable experiences. And even if someone does not use the gift, it does not end up in a landfill. These gifts are better than anything you could ever put in a box.
4. Make a donation
This is not just easy, but it is unselfish and benefits people who need help. Find out the favorite charities/causes the recipient supports or feels passionate about and donate in their name. And what better time to do it than during the holidays when thinking about other people makes the season more meaningful.
Here’s how to find out more about your recipients without bothering them.
5. Gift a dinner
A gift card to a new local restaurant is perfect during the holidays. Everyone is in the mood to go out, celebrate a bit, and generally have a good time. Also, a warm cozy dinner at a restaurant is a great way to add to the festive feeling and again also helps patronize local businesses.
6. Other sustainable options
If you are thinking that giving only eco-friendly, bio-degradable gifts, services, etc., will considerably narrow down your choices, there is another aspect to sustainable gifting that you could consider.
Indeed, everything cannot be made of biodegradable material. Or perhaps it can, but the world has not reached that stage yet. However, when gifts are given for the sake of it or due to compulsion, many are thrown into the garbage and end up unused in landfills. These gifts serve no purpose; they do not make the giver or the receiver happy, nor are they good for the environment.
Hence, you should pick your gift carefully – considering what the recipient will love and use to its full potential.
If you do not want all the hassle of thinking of what gift to buy, you could also try Eva – the gifting assistant. Eva is an AI-powered chatbot that can handle your whole gifting process, from finding out what the recipient likes and interests and choosing the perfect gift they will cherish and use for years to come. This in itself is a sustainable way to gift.
As people realize that their lifestyles, health, and environment are interconnected, they are beginning to shop sustainably. This means buying products that don’t end up creating unnecessary waste on our planet. And this should be one of the more critical aspects you should consider before choosing a gift this holiday season.
To learn more about how we can help you with your holiday gifting or to avail of our free trial, get in touch with us now!