The annual struggle of buying presents for the men in your life.

Big Bash League
Thanks to our brand partner, Big Bash League


Life is tough as the gift-organiser of the family.

I suppose I should blame myself for taking on that role. I’d begin by sending a text to my siblings ahead of Father’s Day or my dad’s birthday asking for contributions towards a big gift, then I’d call my mum for ideas, then I’d purchase the present and wrap it. Later I’d carry the card around so everyone could sign it.

Unfortunately, I was doing a terrible job of it. Every year, twice a year, my dad ends up with a hardware voucher, whether he likes it or not. A few times I’d have to debt collect. “Um, you forgot to pay me for dad’s present. Can you transfer the money, please?”

presents for men
“Life is tough as the gift-organiser of the family.” Image via iStock.

Clearly I’d completely given up on putting in any real effort when it came to buying gifts for certain men in my life – my stepsons were getting money every time, my husband was being sent to the movies (sometimes I’d even throw in the popcorn). And my dad? Well he swore those hardware vouchers were “fine,” he said the only reason he hadn’t used them (for the past three years) was because he was saving for “something big”. Yeah right.

If I received the same gift every year twice a year (on my birthday and on Mother’s Day) I’d be pretty pissed about it, so it’s time to put more effort when it comes to buying gifts for the men in my life. I know I can do better.

There are so many amazing gift ideas at our fingertips. All it takes is a little effort (on my part) and this list for you.

1. Weekend away

Sometimes the hardest part of having a weekend away is the organising of it. My husband hadn’t seen a friend of his for quite a while when I organised for him to fly to Tassie for a catch up. Yes, it involved hacking into his email and communicating with his friend behind his back but I wanted it to be a surprise. They’re are great packages you can access and if you can tie the weekend away in with a visit with friends, relatives or a cool event, even better.

2. Whale watching

There’s nothing more amazing than seeing whales breach, on a boat, only metres away. It’s absolutely breathtaking. There are a number of whale watching tours that run excellent trips and virtually guarantee you’ll see whales within the first few minutes of arriving at your selected location. A waterproof camera goes really well with this gift, or maybe a waterproof phone cover for those us with smaller budgets.

There’s nothing more amazing than seeing whales breach, on a boat, only metres away. It’s absolutely breathtaking. Image via bartonie__c Instagram.

3. Learn-to-surf lessons

Surfing lessons are so much fun, however my husband and step sons have been surfing all their lives, so I had to pick up my game and invest in some kitesurfing lessons. The booking cost includes all equipment and trained professionals will guide them through. Whether you book surfing or kite surfing lessons, they’ll have an absolute ball.

4. Big Bash League

There’s a big difference between watching BBL on TV and actually being there. A similar example is letting your kids play an electronic cricket game as opposed to taking them to watch one. I know, I know, Jarryd Hayne used to play an American football computer game and look at him now. I’m sure he would have much preferred to watch it in real life, as will your kids. BBL is a truly entertaining experience like no other that will guarantee an amazing day out for anyone. Even rabid cricket fans will love the fun and excitement of BBL. You can book your tickets online for the upcoming summer season here.

“There’s a big difference between watching BBL on TV and actually being there.” Image supplied.

5. Hampers

It’s not true that hampers are boring gifts. They’re not, especially if you make your own. Pick a theme for the man in your life and buy a few bits and pieces, then head to the dollar store and grab a basket, cellophane, add in some chocolates or nibbles, a bottle of beer or champagne and you have a great gift specifically designed for your loved one. Pre-packed hampers are also a great idea. My stepson lives overseas and it costs a fortune to send him anything, so I just hop on the internet and send him a hamper from a local company. Easy.

6. Beer tasting

For those in the family that are over 18, why not book in for a tour at your local brewery? Whether it be Sydney’s Willie the Boatman or Melbourne’s Mountain Goat Brewery, there are some brilliant beer tastings around that your dad and husband will love. If you can, print out the confirmation paperwork so you can put it in a card for extra brownie points. And add some chocolates or books or beer (see what I did there?) just so you have something to wrap. After all, it always looks better to have something you can put a ribbon around.

presents for men
“For those in the family that are over 18, why not book in for a tour at your local brewery?” Image via iStock.


What are some of the best and worst presents you have given to the men in your life?

Here are some of the (best) worst presents the Mamamia team has received: