Best Christmas Gift Ideas for Staff Under $20 or Less

July 27, 2022 9 min read

There are frequently unforeseen events that force us to buy gifts for coworkers, whether it be to celebrate Christmas, promotions, or any other occasion at work. Giving and receiving gifts is a surefire way to build rapport, foster friendships, and raise spirits at work.

But it can be quite difficult to decide what to get your coworkers and sometimes even how much to spend. 

We've compiled a thorough list of employee gift suggestions for every occasion and every price range in the hopes that it will serve as inspiration for your next gift-giving event.

1. Reusable Coffee Mug

Reusable mugs and cups have grown in popularity in recent years because they are fashionable, practical, and environmentally friendly. As they may be used to carry their morning tea or coffee into the office directly from home, to fill up in the office during break times, or even as substitutes for single-use cups at most coffee shops, they make a fantastic gift for a coworker. A wide variety of sizes, colors, and patterns are available at affordable costs from Coffee Cup.

2. Reusable Water Bottle

In a similar vein, a reusable water bottle is an additional suggestion for an employee gift that is useful both inside and outside the workplace. Water bottles from Chilly are among the best available; they come in a wide variety of patterns and hues and are currently quite in style. They are a helpful gift since they can prevent hot drinks and soups from becoming cold for up to 12 hours and can keep water cold for 24 hours regardless of the outside temperature.

3. Scented Candles

When in doubt about what to get a female coworker, candles are nearly always a surefire choice. There is a vast selection of scented candles available from Yankee Candle, Bed Bath and Beyond, and even Amazon when you're stuck for inspiration.

4. Bottle of Wine

Giving alcohol to employees is a fairly traditional and well-liked gift option for any event or season of the year. Since so many people drink it, a fine bottle of wine is perfect for a celebration and may be opened right away or taken home and saved for another occasion. Following a team victory or someone being promoted, prosecco, or even champagne is a great way to celebrate triumph in style!

5. Mini Alcohol Bottles

Alcohol is a timeless option for employee gifts, and if you want to be a little more original, consider giving your staff a set of miniature gin, vodka, or whiskey bottles. They frequently come in several flavors, making it fun for booze enthusiasts to experiment with new pairings.

You can purchase each little bottle individually through The Bottle Club to create a special, customized gift for a coworker. As an alternative, you can choose from a ton of pre-made gift boxes that contain liquor at the shop.

6. Plants

Small indoor potted plants make wonderful employee gifts because they can be displayed on the recipient's desk in the workplace afterward. They are a lovely and functional gift because they not only look nice but have also been shown to boost oxygen circulation, eliminate toxins from the air, and even increase productivity and focus levels in the office!

7. Stationery 

Since pens and markers can quickly disappear throughout the day, stationery is sometimes a wonderful employee gift option for folks who work in an office setting. Pens with personalized engravings, like this one, are widely available and provide a heartfelt touch to gifts.

When they are also marked with a name, they are less likely to disappear! For coworkers who might use a little assistance with organizing, personalized diaries or planners make a particularly sweet and practical employee gift idea.

8. Plants

Another great and traditional employee gift suggestion for a coworker is a bouquet. Flowers are typically highly received and demonstrate that you have given careful thought to your gift, whether you choose to pick up a bunch from your neighborhood shop or order a box from an online retailer like Interflora or You Flowers to be delivered right to the office.

9. Chocolates and Sweets

Chocolates and other sweets are probably among the most well-liked employee gift suggestions to give both within and outside of the workplace. The value of the chocolate industry is at gift $45 billion, which is hardly surprising given how much of it we enjoy eating! This indicates that it is not difficult to locate and that practically any retailer has a variety of gift boxes that are appropriate for any coworker. Numerous other chocolate manufacturers, like Lindt or Hershey's, provide their line of gift boxes.

However, if they have a sweeter tooth, they might want to receive a box of candies instead, and there are plenty of locations to purchase them given how vast the candy industry is becoming. A lot of the homemade fudge boxes on Etsy are excellent, and Sweezy allows you to choose your sweets for a variety of weights and even has a "birthday box" that you can customize.

You might also attempt making your gifts from scratch to save even more money, which adds a touch of originality and sometimes results in more meaningful gifts. This video includes some fantastic suggestions for crafting DIY Christmas gifts that will be well-liked by both your family and friends as well as your coworkers.

10. Bottle of Sparkling Brut Spumante

This Spumante, which costs under $15, tastes just as excellent as any Prosecco bottle. Given that it is typically appreciated and simple to choose, wine is frequently chosen as a gift for coworkers. Sparkling wine is fantastic for a special occasion because it can be served at work as a treat, but you could also choose to give a colleague a sophisticated bottle of red wine or rosé for their birthday or Christmas instead.

11. Etsy Work From Home Treat Box

Although the price of this gorgeous chocolate box is a little higher than what you may pay at the store, it is unquestionably worth it. This confectionary assortment, which contains 6 freshly crafted chocolates, is very well-liked in the UK (where, even with postage, you won't pay more than £20 for it), but international delivery is also a possibility!

12. Small Desktop Plant Pot

This straightforward but endearing planter is ideal as a gift for a coworker because it fits well on top of a desk at the workplace. With a price tag of less than $12, you have extra money, allowing you to purchase an indoor plant as well, like this $5 Wallace plant, which would make the ideal, already-planted employee gift.

13. Bath and Body Works Gift Set

All of Bath and Body Works' little gift sets cost just $13.50, making them the ideal Secret Santa or stocking stuffer for a coworker over the winter holidays, though they make excellent gifts year-round. There are several options available, so you can pick one that particularly matches the personalities of your coworkers. They're fantastic as gifts for loved ones or simply as a nice treat for yourself.

14. Chesapeake Scented Candle

A tried-and-true gift for any coworker you may not know all that well but still get along with is a set of scented candles. This natural soy wax candle with a Chesapeake Bay water lily and pear smell is made for those ecologically aware coworkers and is 100 percent recyclable.

15. Slogan Coffee Mug

Not only is this coffee mug with a catchphrase useful, but it will also make your coworkers smile. Mugs are a traditional gift for the office, and Amazon has a wide selection of them for cheap prices, including ones that can be personalized!

16. UpCircle The Pamper Kit

Another lovely gift for a Christmas Secret Santa exchange, a complement to a bigger group of lovely gifts, or a stand-alone small yet opulent gift is this compact pamper kit from UpCircle. To give the items a try, it comes with 5 miniature bottles of well-known UpCircle products, including a citrus scrub and a facial mask. This employee gift idea has the advantage of being vegan, cruelty-free, and produced with environmentally friendly components, so it's fantastic for you and the environment.

17. Painted Photo Holder and Photo

This modest and simple photo holder is a wonderful way to add significance to a gift and places the photo front and center. Find a photo of the two of you and put it in this adorable wooden photo holder for a more unique gift to offer a coworker with whom you have a close relationship. A picture of the entire team may be placed in the holder as an alternative, and it would be a wonderful way to commemorate finishing a project. It is simple to set up on a desk at work as a sweet reminder of the kind gift and the occasion.

18. Eucalyptus and Spearmint Body Lotion

Save someone from dry hands in winter with this stress-relieving body lotion because office air can become stale. It's the ideal shape for a drawer and elegant enough to put on top of a desk.

19. YAY! Stemless Wine Glass

Who would want to drink from disposable cups provided by the workplace when there is an alternative?

20. Bright Ideas Journal

Everyone's thoughts need a special space, and your coworker might find this to be the ideal one. Just tell them that you should be given credit for any outstanding ideas that originate in this notebook and are loved by your CEO.

21. Cat Lover Magnetic Poetry Kit

Dogs are undoubtedly a person's closest friend, but cats make up for it on the internet with their sense of humor. The perfect scenario is that your recipient will post these magnets on the office fridge so you can use them as well.

22. Fantastic Cities: A Coloring Book of Amazing Places Genuine and Imaginary

Don't you know? Nowadays, coloring is not just for children. Adult coloring books are a fantastic stress-relieving tool that could help not only your coworker but also those around them. (Hint: It's you I'm referring to!)

23. Elephant Stationery

Elephants are said to have good memories. They are therefore the ideal animal to convey your coworker's words both locally and globally. I can't promise anything, but I do believe that receiving a reminder—whether passive-aggressive or not—feels a little better when it looks as good as this one does.

24. Tequila Mockingbird: Cocktails With a Literary Twist

Does your colleague enjoy reading? Maybe! Does your coworker enjoy alcohol? Probably! If one of these questions has a positive response, this tiny book will add a little something special to their weekend cocktail party. Anyone for Romeo and Julep?

25. Godiva Milk Chocolate Hot Cocoa Canister

This is not your typical store-bought blend! Oh, and if you truly adore this individual, think about giving them a package of miniature marshmallows to add to their hot chocolate.

26. Coffee Brew Candle

Will you feel more awake if the room smells like coffee? Get this for your coworker to quickly learn the answer.

27. Pocket Utensil Set

Okay, so maybe your office is a safe place for your glasses and mugs, but what about the silverware? Unless that's their preferred utensil, your coworker shouldn't have to eat their lunch with their hands (in which case I hope they stay away from their computer during lunch).

28. Tipping Teacup

The ideal eccentric tea cup for any tea enthusiast. Without having to use (or clean) a tea infuser, your coworker can drink loose-leaf tea. Additionally, it looks extremely great.

29. Critter Easel Calendar

Give your coworkers (and your own) cubicle wall some cute animals and a place to record their activities, including meetings and hopefully more meetings. (And, hopefully, a pleasant hour for them, too.)

30. Decision Maker

With this adorable paperweight, you can make your coworker's life easier.

It's a good idea to follow some guidelines when it comes to gift-giving in a professional setting to avoid offending anyone. Given that some gifts may not be appropriate to give to coworkers, we've compiled a brief list of general gift-giving etiquette rules to bear in mind.

Don't gift someone with cash

Cash should never be given as a gift at the office because it can come out as tacky and has no real significance. Cash should generally only be given as a bonus from the employer and never traded between employees. Gift cards, which are more personalized but not overly specific and may be used by the receiver to purchase any item they like, are a good alternative to cash.

Limit your spending.

If you spend an excessive amount of money on one, it may appear that you are trying to outdo or outshine other employees who have spent less on their gifts. If the gift is exceptionally lavish, it might also be a little unpleasant and uncomfortable for the recipient. Additionally, it's a good idea to be mindful of not skimping on a gift because doing so might make you appear careless or lazy. In general, if you're unclear about how much to spend, it's advisable to ask around among your coworkers to get a sense of what others are prepared to spend on their gifts.

Be Wary of Unsuitable Gifts

Some gifts may be deemed inappropriate or too intimate depending on how well you know your coworker. For example, it is generally unacceptable to offer coworkers who you wouldn't consider friends outside of work jewelry or cologne.

If you are close to your coworker, you will know what they enjoy and be able to buy them a gift that suits them. However, it's usually best to stick to a generic gift like a bottle of alcohol or houseplant if you don't know them well but are still expected to offer gifts, especially around the holidays.

We hope that these employee gift suggestions will help you get creative for the next office party or even get ready for the holidays when giving gifts is more customary.

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