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12 Gifts That Will Be Especially Useful in This Very Unusual Year

published Nov 16, 2020
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Credit: PayPal

It’s been an unusual year, and this holiday season is shaping up to look a lot different than previous ones. No matter your situation, there’s a good chance you’re looking at spending less in-person time with friends and loved ones. When you can’t be nearby (or even when you can), there’s nothing like a thoughtful gift to let someone know you were thinking of them during a tough year. And there’s no denying that getting gifts in the mail is really, really fun.  

We’ve put together a mix of gift suggestions, in a range of prices, including some things that your giftee might find particularly useful in our current situation. We’ve mixed in a few holiday decorations, too, because we love the idea of sending someone a decoration as a gift: Mail it early, at the beginning of the season, and it’ll be a fun surprise and a physical reminder that you’re thinking about them, even if you’re far away.

Budgeting during the holidays can be tricky — you probably don’t have a line item in other months for hundreds of dollars worth of gifts. That’s where PayPal’s new Pay in 4* solution can be really handy. Millions of trusted retailers will give you this option when you checkout with PayPal; just select “Pay Later” in checkout then select “Pay in 4”. It lets you split your purchase (between $30 and $600 total purchase amount at eligible merchants) into four payments: Pay the down payment when you buy, and the remaining three payments every two weeks. That way you can be generous with your gifts but stick to your budget, too.

So here’s a collection of some of our favorite gifts that are just as useful as they are thoughtful, all of which you can successfully budget for using PayPal’s Pay in 4 solution. You can check out some of the participating merchants here!

Credit: Anthropologie

Deck The Halls Monogram Ornament, $10 (Anthropologie)

These customized ornaments are a sweet gift to send to a friend to let them know you’re thinking about them, or a fun way to decorate your own home — get one for everyone in the house, or spell out a favorite word or phrase.

Credit: Anthropologie

Match Cloche, $30 (Anthropologie)

This lovely firestick receptacle is beautiful and useful and a little extravagant. In short, it’s the perfect gift. It comes stocked with elegant 4″ matches and is a great gift paired with a candle or just on its own.

Credit: Nordstrom

Packable Daypack, $32 (Nordstrom)

A day-sized backpack perfect for shorter outings, in a beautiful dark floral print. Great for day trips now, extremely packable for longer travel later.

Credit: Nordstrom

Skittle Stainless Steel Bottle, $35 (Nordstrom)

Who even knew that a water bottle could look this good? This stainless-steel bottle has a Memphis-inspired look that makes it pretty enough to leave out on a desk, or pretty much anywhere.

Credit: Backcountry

Solar Powered String Lights, $40 (Backcountry)

You may have been doing a lot of outdoor hangs lately — and you may have noticed that the outdoors can get pretty dark. This set of string lights can be charged via USB or solar cell, and hung pretty much anywhere – perfect for camping, a park hang, or just the backyard.

Credit: Anthropologie

aGo Pocket Bluetooth Speaker, $58 (Anthropologie)

A portable speaker is always really nice to have, and this one has a beautiful design in addition to its impressive sound. The wooden box makes it especially nice for gifting.

Credit: Nordstrom

Zeppelin Beach Blanket, $58 (Nordstrom)

This colorful cotton number is cozy as a throw now, indispensable as a beach (or picnic) blanket later.

“Pay in 4” is available at millions of retailers where PayPal is accepted. Click here to explore a few examples!

Credit: Anthropologie

Berry Leaf Wool Wreath, $68, (Anthropologie)

Wreaths are a great way to add a festive holiday feel to your home, even in a small space. And this lovely felt one can be reused from year to year.

Credit: Nordstrom

Kobenstyle 2-Quart Saucepan, $115 (Nordstrom)

Is getting someone a saucepan as a gift strange? Not when it’s this gorgeous lavender style they’ll want to leave out forever.

Credit: Backcountry

Primus Kamoto OpenFire Pit, $130 (Backcountry)

This folding fire pit means you can make a fire pretty much anywhere – camping, the beach, the park, the backyard. The included grate means it functions as a grill as well, and when folded it’s just a few inches thick.

“Pay in 4” is available at millions of retailers where PayPal is accepted. Click here to explore a few examples!

Credit: Anthropologie

Sunnylife Lucite Jumbling Tower, $140 (Anthropologie)

It’s a party game that looks like a piece of art. It’s the rare game that’s sure to delight both for the gameplay and the gorgeous mix of colors that will inevitably result.

Credit: Nordstrom

Set of 6 Stripe Rim Glasses, $168 (Nordstrom)

This rainbow-colored set of glasses, with subtly striped rims, is a beautiful way to beat the winter blues. Buy it for a very special person on your list, or just as a treat for yourself.

We hope that one (or more!) of these gift ideas will prove to be thoughtful and useful for someone on your list. And keep in mind that Pay in 4 can help you be generous with gifting this year, all while sticking to your budget. Check out the many, many retailers where you can use Pay in 4 to start gifting (and budgeting) this season.

Pay in 4 is available upon approval on purchases from $30–$600. Late fee amount and eligibility for Pay in 4 vary by state. Loans to California residents are made or arranged pursuant to a California Finance Lenders Law License. Learn more about Pay in 4 here.