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Great Father's Day gifts that won't break the bank

The National Retail Federation says the average family will shell out $190 on gifts, dinner and outings for dad this year.
Father's Day
Posted at 10:15 AM, Jun 07, 2024

With pandemic savings depleted for many families in 2024, people are keeping a closer eye on how much they spend.

Many of us want to get dad a great gift for Father's Day, but don't want to spend a fortune.

But how much should we spend? The National Retail Federation says the average family will shell out $190 on gifts, dinner and outings for dad this year.

So we wanted to know how to do it creatively, without breaking the bank.

Hardware, grills, mowers on sale

Brad Baker manages a Great Lakes Ace Hardware store, which this time of year is a giant toy store for dad.

"We have a lot of grills on sale," he said,

From small budget grills for $75, to $800-plus Big Green Eggs, Baker said "a grill is an ideal Father's Day gift."

If dad already has a good working grill, Baker suggests some accessories.

"We have spatulas, cleaning utensils, everything you can think of for the grill," he said.

If dad would prefer a new mower or leaf blower, Baker says think electric.

"The biggest brand right now are the Egos," he said, showing off the green-colored electric mowers you see in subdivisions everywhere these days.

"Best of all," he said, "the batteries on them actually work with the Ego blowers and trimmers as well."

If the budget is tight, Baker suggests a tool set, for as little as 20 bucks.

"These are phenomenal sets," he said, showing some all-in-one Milwaukee and Stanley tool kits. "Some of them are ratchets, but they come with every piece you can think of."

Grills for sale at a store.

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Non-hardware gift ideas

If grills and tools are too stereotypical for the dad in your life, Consumer Reports has posted a number of great alternative ideas.

Deal editor Samantha Gordon recommends the tech space, with stores running deals right now on smartwatches, fitness trackers and headphones.

If your dad loves to cook indoors, she says, "you'll be able to find deals on small kitchen appliances, and new knives."

For dads who like to mix things up, smart shopping expert Trae Bodge likes the idea of subscription boxes that come filled with a variety of food, craft beers or grooming accessories.

"If he's not someone who likes to shop for himself, he might get something new and fun every month," Bodge said.

According to the National Retail Federation, the top gifts some shoppers are planning to give this Father's Day include:

  • Special outings
  • Clothing
  • Gift cards
  • Electronics
  • Personal care items

"I always try to think of what his hobbies are, how you might supplement that hobby," Bodge said. "If he golfs, maybe it's an SPF golf shirt."
Lilly Pascal was grabbing a few basic hardware items at Ace that she knows her dad needs.

"My dad's very special," she said. "I love my dad!"

She is proof that it is the thought, and not how much you pay, that counts.

So don't waste your money.

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