28 awesome Zero Waste Gift Experiences to give in 2022

28 awesome Zero Waste Gift Experiences to give in 2022

Zero waste gift experiences are a great eco-friendly alternative to physical gifts that can fill up our homes, and could end up in landfill eventually.

Gift giving is a way to show love and kindness to friends and family

Giving gifts for birthdays or celebrations like Christmas can be a lovely way to bring joy to people, and show them you care about them.

People usually love to receive gifts, and the gift giver can share in the warm fuzzies too. Giving a well thought out gift can bring a little happiness to both the giver and the person receiving the gift.

Looking for low waste gift ideas for people who have everything?

However, many people are actively trying to reduce the amount of stuff or clutter they have. Especially people aiming to live lower waste or zero waste lifestyles. People taking this approach don’t really want things that could end up either being donated to charity, or worse, end up in landfill.

Many people don’t really need more bits and pieces, they already have everything they need. They could be in the happy position of being able to buy the things they need or want, so don’t really ‘need’ more stuff.

Low waste or clutter free gift experiences are an excellent solution to avoid giving gifts that are not really needed, or could even be unwanted.

Gifts of physical ‘things’ may not be the best option

Sometimes the people we want to buy gifts for are aiming to declutter their lives, and live a more minimalist lifestyle. They might have limited space in their homes, and really don’t need more items to store or display.

We might have the best intention when we give gifts, but it could be adding to people’s stress levels, when we give people more stuff.

Unwanted gifts waste your money, time, and natural resources – not very eco friendly

People often feel uncomfortable giving away or even throwing away unwanted gifts. No one wants to feel or appear to be ungrateful.

There are ways to deal with unwanted gifts in a more sustainable way. Donating to charity, regifting, and returning gifts for a credit where possible, are options in these situations.


Image for post about 28 awesome Zero Waste Gift Experiences to give in 2022

Better eco friendly gift options? Give zero waste gifts experiences instead

Low waste gifts that don’t add to clutter are ones that either don’t take up room long term because they are consumable, or are not physical items, but experience gifts such as vouchers or memberships.

You could even give people cash, especially if they are saving for an event such as a holiday, or saving up towards a purchase of a larger item. It’s the tradition in many cultures to give gifts of cash at weddings, to help towards the couples future together.

These types of gifts are perfect for people who don’t need or want more stuff in their lives.

Giving zero waste gift experiences instead of physical gifts

Here are some ideas for waste-free experience gifts that you could give your loved ones for birthdays, Christmas, weddings, anniversaries, or any other time you want to give them a treat.

zero waste gift experiences ideas

28 zero waste gift experiences ideas:

9 types of ‘Experiences’ gifts

Gifts of vouchers for experiences can be incredibly special to the person receiving thiem, as they are often things you might not include in your usual budget. They can be treats or luxuries that you maybe just don’t set aside time or money for.

Ideas include:

  1. Tickets to an event – concerts, theatre, sports event, comedy club
  2. Movie vouchers
  3. Voucher for a tourist attraction that’s right on their doorstep but they never go to, such as a city tour, or heritage train trip.
  4. Voucher for fun family outings such as bowling, escape room, laser tag, indoor rock climbing, mini golf, trampoline park, theme park
  5. Beauty treatment vouchers – massage, spa day, manicure / pedicure, facial treatment
  6. Restaurant gift vouchers
  7. Travel vouchers – to go towards a holiday or vacation, or activities to do on holiday
  8. Family photo session
  9. Charity donation in their name

6 types of ‘Membership’ gifts

Membership type gifts are a winner, as they often last for a few months or a year, so they really are a gift that keeps on giving!

  1. Museum annual membership – art museums, science museums, children’s museums
  2. Zoo or other wildlife sanctuary annual pass
  3. Fitness memberships – contribution to a gym or pool membership, voucher for a concession card for favourite exercise classes
  4. Toy library or other similar lending library
  5. Streaming services, such as Netflix, Disney +, or Audible
  6. Meal delivery services such as Hello Fresh

8 ideas for giving gift vouchers of your time

Giving the gift of your time is a highly personalized way to show someone you care about them. It could be a low cost for the giver, if they can make time to help a friend or family member. But it is priceless to have someone help you with chores or tasks.

Ideas include:

  1. Babysitting
  2. Car washing
  3. House cleaning
  4. Date night voucher for your partner
  5. Personal chef for a night, or meal prepping
  6. Pet sitting or dog walking
  7. Gardening help – lawn mowing, weeding, planting, shoveling leaves
  8. Helping declutter and reorganise a room, cupboard or whole house!

5 ideas for vouchers for classes or courses

Giving the gift of a voucher for a course or class is a fun way for the gift recipient to try something new or further explore a favourite hobby. Vouchers can be for a physical course at a local college or evening class, or an online course though websites such as Skillshare or university websites.

How about these ideas:

  1. Food related – cake decorating, baking, cooking, making beer
  2. Sports – dance, martial arts, yoga, swimming lessons, tennis coaching
  3. Creative or artistic – musical instrument lessons, painting, photography, technical skills like woodwork, graphic design
  4. Education – learning a language
  5. Self improvement – life coaching, health or wellness coaching

Bonus ideas for low waste gifts – consumable items

Making a gift basket or care package of your friends or family members favourite treats is a winning gift idea. Choose items with recyclable or reusable packaging.

Ideas include:

  • Home baking – biscuits, cakes, crackers, and seasonal treats like fruit mince pies at Christmas
  • Locally produced foods
  • Tea, coffee, hot chocolate
  • Wine or beer
  • Fruit baskets
  • Cheese selection
  • Flowers
  • Plants – houseplants, plants for the garden, or even trees

More ideas for eco friendly gift giving



Final thoughts on zero waste gift experiences

What do you think about giving zero waste gift experiences instead of physical presents for birthdays or holidays? Have you received a gift like those listed? What did you think of it?

Personally, my favourite types of gift experiences are either tickets to events, or homegrown or homemade gifts (I know these vary wildly in terms of the cost of money and time involved!).

List of 28 zero waste gift experiences ideas

10 thoughts on “28 awesome Zero Waste Gift Experiences to give in 2022”

  • These are all fantastic ideas, even with our grandkids, whilst there is still some ‘stuff’ given they always get events and experiences especially for January when summer holidays are happening. It keeps them entertained and doesn’t break mum and dad’s wallet…we are moving to no waste gifting more and more…

    • Hi Jeanie, thank you for your comment. I agree that is is likely for us in the Southern Hemisphere, with summer holidays at Christmas time! Lots of time to get out and about, lots of outdoor experiences at this time of year.

  • Love your post! Every year I have to tell my mum that she should not buy me any presents because I won’t use them plus they generate so much waste. Now, I can send her this list and hopefully, both of us will be happy 😀

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *