Don't stress that giving gift cards is a short step away from the lazy option of giving money. People love money. And a gift card is like money that also recognises your individual interests. Here's six possibilities you might not have considered.
Airline Gift Cards
Cost: From $50 Where to get it: Qantas, Virgin Blue, Jetstar Why it's a good choice: Who can resist the gift of travel? Just make sure the airline you pick operates from your recipient's nearest airport. Picture by Robert Wallace
Cost: From $25 (though a decent experience requires rather more) Where to get it: Red Balloon Why it's a good choice: If they've already "got everything", give them a voucher they can spend on abseiling, cooking classes or driving a V8 car. And this option is red.
US iTunes Cards
Cost: From $US15 Where to get it: Travel to the US Why it's a good choice: Set up a US iTunes account and add a US iTunes card, and your entertainment options increase massively. (While you can order iTunes cards online, you may not have much recompense if you get a dud code.)
Cost: From $20 Where to get it: IKEA Why it's a good choice: You knew this was coming, obviously.
Visa Gift Card
Cost: From $25 Where to get it: Australia Post, banks and online Why it's a good choice: OK, this really is giving away money, but it's a useful option for people who don't have credit cards and want to shop online. (Bear in mind that prepaid VISA cards won't work at Woolworths-owned stores because of its no debit credit card policy.)
Adultshop Gift Voucher
Cost: From $25 Where to get it: Adultshop Why it's a good choice: Given what my recent novel is about, this is hardly a shocking inclusion. And it'll make for some interesting dinner party conversation with Aunt Gretchen.