Do you have no idea what to buy for someone this Christmas? Or do you want to resist giving in to consumerism?
Instead of simply reaching for a gift voucher/card or cold, hard cash, why not give something that will last long after this year's festivities have ended?
There have arguably never been more options for giving someone a financial gift.
Here are some suggestions.
It's an obvious one, but some bonds from the UK's most popular home for savings has been a Christmas stocking filler for decades. You can invest in Premium Bonds from £100 and the recipient can withdraw their money at any time if they don't win a prize. So it's a risk-free, albeit potentially low-earning, financial gift. You can buy them online from the NS&I website.
Children's savings and investments
If the gift recipient is a child, why not contribute to a savings account or a tax-free Junior ISA? If they don't have one already, you could arrange to open one in their name.
You can save up to £4,080 in a Junior ISA during the current tax year. The top interest rate on a cash Junior ISA currently comes from Coventry Building Society at 3.25%.
In terms of children's savings accounts, the top rate for instant access is 3% from Santander's 123 Mini Current Account.
You could also look at a stocks and shares Junior ISA. Some providers offer the chance to pick shares or invest in index trackers (which are preferred), while others just give a choice of funds. Make sure you shop around and compare charges.
You could also choose to lend some money in the name of someone, which could earn them a return later.
Peer-to-peer lending to other people
There is a growing number of peer-to-peer websites allowing you to lend money to people keen to borrow.
Examples include Zopa and Lending Works. You can choose to lend your money over terms of up to five years and enjoy a rate of more than 5%. Shorter terms, or ones that offer near-immediate access, come with smaller interest rates.
This isn't without risk, as the money isn't protected by the Financial Service Compensation Scheme. However, the big peer-to-peer lenders all have contingency funds in case people get into trouble.
Peer-to-peer lending to small businesses
Another option is to lend some money to businesses looking to borrow via a peer-to-peer site. Funding Circle is arguably the most well-established company in this space. It reckons it can deliver returns of up to 7% if money is locked away.
Alternatively, you can lend to green projects through a site like Assetz and earn up to 7%, or to buy-to-let landlords through Landbay.
Jewellery is always a hit but why not go one step further and personalise it too. This Russian Ring Necklace from Posh Totty on Not On The High Street features three linked rings, each of which can be personalised with names, words or even dates as you wish. See what other personalised jewellery items are on offer here.
What's better than just looking good? smelling great too! This 'You're A Star' gift set from Lush is an explosion of luxury and amazing scents. Feel like a real screen siren with the bubble bar, body lotion, shower gel, body butter, shampoo bar, bath bombs, moisturiser and hair perfume. Have a browse through Lush's other gift sets here.
Who doesn't love the chance to dance around the kitchen, bathroom or bedroom when you have a spare minute? With this classy Roberts digital radio from John Lewis you can do it in style knowing that your listening at the highest quality. You can also pick up a mini Roberts radio if you're tight on space!
Snuggle up on the sofa this winter knowing you're wearing one of the fanciest dressing gowns out there. This long-sleeve cashmere cover up from Marks and Spencer is not only classy but sure to keep you nice and toasty. You can also get your hands on matching top and bottoms too to complete the set. If you're not quite up to shelling out almost £200 on a dressing gown then why not pick up this plush number.
Whether they want to update their perfume collection or stick to an old faithful, perfume is always a handy and well received gift. However it can also be pricey but Superdrug has the answer with some great pre-Christmas discounts including £22 off this Marc Jacobs Dot Eau de Parfum 50ml bottle. You can save on selected fragrances at Superdrug now.
You'll be a hit with the whole family this Christmas when you gift this mulled wine set from Habitat to someone special. Mulled wine may be generally reserved to winter, but there's no reason why the warm and festive drink needs to be put back in the cupboard after Christmas, keep it going through the year!
Got a movie buff in the family? Or someone who can't bear it if they miss their favourite TV programme? Why not invest in an Amazon Fire TV Stick or a Chromecast. Both these products offer the option of streaming content from your phone, tablet and laptop directly onto your TV. You'll never have to watch catch up TV on your tiny iPad again!
Mix it up with this fun (and delicious) set of Edinburgh Gins. In the box you'll get a selection of three different gins, and they're not just your run of the mill flavours either, there's regular gin, raspberry gin and also gooseberry and elderflower gin. Or you could go for the cocktail set which comes not only with two flavours but also a cocktail shaker, strainer, pouring spout and shot measurer.
The festive season is also the party season and this gift will not only come in handy for all those Christmas get-togethers but also for getting glam for the rest of the year. The Babyliss Curl Secret from Boots create 'free-flowing curls with long-lasting effect' so you can dance the night away and your hair will stay in place!
For the fashionista in your family why restrict them to a voucher from just one shop? Invest in an ASOS voucher and they'll have the chance to browse through hundreds of brands on the site. You can chose vouchers of any value between £20 and £100. If you know they're a keen ASOS shopper why not spend an extra £9.95 and buy them free next-day delivery for a year!