Some people seem to have a special knack for buying gifts. Whether it’s for a close friend or just an acquaintance, there are some people who always have a wave of inspiration and manage to find something ideal and original to delight the recipient. Others will trawl the shops fruitlessly for hours, only to come back armed with gift tokens again.
Gift vouchers are definitely not the right present for your partner, however. Friends or relatives may be happy to get vouchers for birthdays or Christmas, but vouchers can also seem impersonal and thus send completely the wrong message to a boyfriend or girlfriend. The perfect gift requires thought and consideration beyond asking: “Which is his or her favorite shop?”
If you’re buying for a woman, jewelry is always welcome, especially for occasions such as anniversaries or Valentine’s Day. However, if the wrong style is chosen, it can be an expensive mistake, and one that will lead her to question your skills of observation. Pay attention to the items she points out in magazines and shop windows: is she drawn to styles that are classic or ultra-modern, understated or baroque? There’s a wealth of styles available and there’s no use buying a simple diamond pendant when she would really prefer something more colorful and ornate.
Men can be even harder to buy for unless they have specific hobbies or interests. If this is the case, don’t opt for frivolous paraphernalia. Again, research is key: be sure to listen carefully when he mentions the latest gadgets he would love to own. It’s possible to ask questions about your partner’s technological wish-list without being too obvious – try striking up a casual conversation about a gadget you’d like, and then try to coax a few suggestions out of him in return.
If you know, for example, that he could do with a new MP3 player, laptop or tablet, it’s best not to simply go out and impulse-buy whichever one looks appealing to you – spend some time doing research online and seek the help of experts when they’re on-hand in stores.
If there’s an occasion for gift-buying on the horizon, make sure you have the right credit card to hand. Rewards cards from American Express are ideal for shopping sprees, as you can collect exclusive membership points as you spend, which can be redeemed against other luxuries like travel and holidays. It’s easy to fill out an American Express Rewards Card application online, so that you can treat yourself as well as your partner.