Consider your personal relationship with a single dad prior to choosing a gift. If you are the soccer mom, share carpool or playdates or a family member who interacts with the child and dad, then by all means factor in his dad status when picking a gift. But if your relationship is solely romantic or business related, without children interaction, then his being a single dad should not reflect into your gift buying equation.
Give the single dad a gift that shares time with the child. A season pass to an amusement park, museum, zoo or local attraction works well as they can enjoy it throughout the year. Or, give him the luxury of time off, as you take the child for a weekend to allow dad to get some personal time or take a short vacation. Another option is to give dad a personal gift he can appreciate such as cologne, an engraved watch or a signet ring.
Shared Children Activities
Consider an appointment book with all the soccer dates written inside, or a pair of tickets to the local soccer team. Or, give him a movie basket containing cookies, nuts, candy and the latest child friendly DVD or perhaps a couple of prepaid tickets to the movies at the mall. Maybe he would prefer a couple of skateboards for the park or a football to throw around on weekends.
Give him romantic gifts that the two of you can enjoy such as a surprise weekend at a cozy hidden bed and breakfast or a outdoor nighttime picnic under the stars at the observatory with a couple of bottles of wine. Perhaps he would prefer a candlelit dinner at your place with a relaxing massage with scented oils and candles or a night dancing at the hippest new club in town.
For a business relationship, consider two tickets to the local NBA, NFL or MLB game. Or, give him a business related item, such as a desk picture frame to put a picture of his child in, a pen and mechanical pencil set or a clock for his wall. Another option is a potted plant for his desk inserted into an unusual self-watering container or a USB battery charger for his devices.