magazine rackPeople just don’t realize that a magazine subscription gift can really make anyone's day whether it be on a holiday, birthday or for a special occasion. It’s a well-kept secret that most people overlook when trying to figure out what gift to get that special person.  Magazine subscriptions are a perfect gift for just about everyone on your list, no matter what time of year you're shopping.

The solution to that throbbing question of what to get someone can often be answered by paying attention to what subscriptions to magazines he or she already has. Trust me, giving a magazine subscription as a gift to someone, especially if it’s one of their favorites, will get you a big smile and a huge thank you.

Magazine Subscription Gift or Discount on a Magazine Subscription?

Before going any further let’s make sure everyone realizes that this article is not about finding low-priced gifts. If you go out searching for the cheapest magazine subscriptions you can find and not take into account the personality of those who will receive them, you could have a disappointing outcome. Nobody likes to spend more money than they have to, but magazine subscription deals on quality publications are commonplace, so don’t worry about price too much. This is all about getting a good gift, not about getting the most inexpensive gift.

Subscription Gift? But They Don’t Read Magazines!

OK, first of all, just relax a little bit. In the very rare chance that you know someone who doesn’t read periodicals that much, all you have to do is sit down and figure out what that person likes. Do they have a certain hobby? Do they hike? Odds will be good that you’ll be able to find a magazine subscription gift that they would enjoy even if they have never seen that publication before. In the next section you’ll see what I’m talking about.

Magazine Subscriptions for…

Below is a list of magazine categories that you can pick from to fit a wide range of personalities, hobby interests or lifestyles (and I guarantee there are more out there). Just look over the list and you should be able to find a magazine subscription gift that is perfect for that friend or loved one.

Architects (Do they love looking at buildings?)
Artists (Can talk for hours about different shades of yellow.)
Car and Truck Enthusiasts (They probably have some car magazines just laying around the house.)
Celebrity News (They’ve got to know who is dating who.)
Collectors (Cards, knives, money, dolls, toys, art, stamps, antiques, etc.)
Comic Book Fans (“Why haven’t they made a Sandman movie?”)
Conspiracy Theorists (Art Bell is a hero of theirs.)
Entrepreneurs (Got a dream of starting their own business?)
Fashionistas (Possible fashion designer in the making?)
Filmmakers (They think they are the next Alfred Hitchcock.)
Fitness Fanatic (“Just 30 more reps!”)
Food Lovers (Cooking magazine subscriptions should be on the list.)
Gamers (“If I go to the bathroom right now, I’ll die!”)
Gay Men and Women (Everybody loves a magazine subscription gift.)
Gardeners (Always have dirt under the finger nails?)
Geeks (Arguments such as Next Generation vs. original are common.)
Goths or Vampires (Dark clothes, dark makeup and tattooing magazines.)
Graphic Designers (“I can’t believe you used that font.”)
Gun Enthusiasts (Do they consider a trip to the gun range a date?)
Horror Fans (Fangoria magazine is a must.)
Hunters and Fishermen (“You can still hunt on Christmas.”)
Investors (“Where is my Economist subscription!”)
Kids (Yep, they are some great magazine subscriptions just for them.)
Magazines for Men (He's got to keep up on the latest Mila Kunis pics.)
Magazines for Women (A little more complex than men.)
Martial Artists (Ninjutsu, Karate, Kung Fu, Judo, Aikido, Sambo, etc.)
Music Fans (Do they speak in song?)
New Parents (A parenting magazine subscription gift is perfect.)
Pet Owners (Willing to spend thousands of dollars to save a pet?)
Photographers (“I got the shot!”)
Puzzle Lovers (Word Find, Crossword, Sudoku, Math, Logic, etc.)
Smokers (A dying breed?)
Sports Fan (“Sundays are for football!”)
Survivalists (They always seem to be prepared.)
Teachers (“Please, no more apples.”)
Tattoo Enthusiasts (“Only 85% of my body is covered.”)
Travelers (“Can anybody say National Geographic magazine subscription?”)
Teenage Girls (One magazine subscription as a gift may not be enough.)
Writers (Twenty-five novels written; none published.)

How to Give a Magazine Subscription Gift

After finding that perfect magazine subscription to get as a gift, I like to buy one issue off the shelf while making sure it has a subscription card in it for you to use. I then buy a greeting card and write in it that I have just ordered them a 1 year subscription to “whatever” publication and they should start to receive issues within “however many” months. Both the magazine and card are wrapped up and given together. You can, of course, just give the card but I think throwing in a copy of the periodical you are giving is in good taste, even if it’s only a back issue of the magazine.

As you can see, picking out something that somebody will like doesn’t have to be that hard if you decide to give them a magazine subscription gift. Just take into account their personality and you should have no worries. You also won’t have to worry about shopping, them not liking it or bad retribution gifts. Sounds like a great idea to me.

Photo by stevegarfield/flickr

Harvard Business Review (1-year auto-renewal)
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(price as of Jun 16, 2013)