26 Free and Cheap Father’s Day Gift Ideas
This information is current as of April 27, 2022.
Dads should be honored every day, not just on Father’s Day. The same goes for moms on Mother’s Day. However, in the U.S., we “officially” celebrate dads on the third Sunday in June. With so many holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries throughout the year, this day doesn’t have to add any more financial stress.
This article includes 26 free and cheap Father’s Day gift ideas you can take advantage of this June. From do-it-yourself (DIY) goodies to low-cost activities, these will put a smile on your dad’s face!
Let’s dive in.
Choosing Your Father’s Day Gift
Every dad is unique, and while many of us claim to have the “best dad ever,” no two are alike. So on Father’s Day, the gift you give your dad should be something unique to him. When creating or choosing your present, you should consider the following:
- Your budget: If you have a few bucks to spare, you could make a dollar stretch a mile with some of our cheap gift ideas. For those with no extra cash, you may be able to use SNAP food stamps on your EBT card to buy ingredients for a special surprise. If you have no SNAP or change to spare, there are still some great gifts you can do or create for free!
- Your dad’s interests: This consideration is a no-brainer – try to give your dad something he will enjoy. If your father isn’t a fan of sports, you probably won’t take him to see a local baseball game. A great secret here is that most dads will appreciate any gift, so long as it’s given with genuine affection from their child(ren). You don’t have to focus so much on the “what” as you do on your effort.
Free Father’s Day Gift Ideas
Some of the best gift ideas come in the form of activities. Below you’ll find an exciting list of activities you can do with your dad for free, depending on where you’re living.
- Enjoy a day outside: If you live near mountains, a forest, a beach, or even a park, you can create a memorable Father’s Day with your dad and family outdoors. Instead of having breakfast or lunch at home, bring that same meal out with you and enjoy a classic picnic with the family. Kids will be able to run freely outside, while Dad can enjoy some time in the shade. If your father is a fisherman, try to find a place with a lake or pond and bring his gear!
- Read some books together: Local libraries are a great place to rent out free books, movies, or games. Check out a few items and plan an at-home party. If your family enjoys reading, you can have the kids act out certain scenes or read their favorite books to Dad. If Dad is more of a movie or videogame buff, rent out a few of those and let him enjoy the afternoon doing what he loves.
- Family chef night: Get creative and make a new dish as a family. Everyone can lend a helping hand and enjoy a night as a chef in the kitchen with Dad!
- Play backyard games: Enjoy your backyard or a local park and play family fun games. Flag football, tag, hide-and-seek, or one of these DIY games could create hours of fun! You could even grill or spend a night under the stars in a makeshift tent if you have a backyard.
- Check out an accessible venue: Summertime brings plenty of possibilities for free concerts, museum entries, farmers’ markets, or even tickets to local events. Check out your town’s calendar online for more information.
- Give Dad alone time: If your father is a family man who is often swamped with work, home, and the kids, the best gift of all might just be giving him peace and quiet for the day! You could take the other family members out to the park and leave Dad alone to relax and reset for this week.
- Have a construction day: If Dad is handy, why not create a convenient family fun day? Get together a bunch of recyclables and spare materials you find around your house. Get creative for this one – search outside, inside, and around your home for anything you can use. Put together different creations – we can call them “works of art” – and have Dad create on as well.
- Play chalk games: You may need to spend $1 on chalk at the Dollar Store, but this will be well worth it. Use the chalk to write messages to Dad in the driveway or on the sidewalk. Show him his family’s kind words and then use the remaining chalk to play games like hopscotch together.
- Enjoy a water balloon fight: If it’s warm enough outside, have a family water balloon fight and enjoy friendly competition in the sun.
- Visit the local pound: Some pounds of Humane Societies may allow family visitors to play with or walk the dogs. Be sure to call ahead to plan this activity. If allowed, you can all enjoy the company of a playful pup for an hour or two.
DIY Father’s Day Gift Ideas
With some creativity, you can go a long way with these DIY gifts for Dad.
- Create Father’s Day Coupons: Father’s Day coupons are a creative way to give Dad multiple gifts – all for free – at once. Kids can decorate these paper coupons using their free school supplies, creating coupons for “free hugs,” “help with a chore,” and things like that.
- Photo book or album: Use some family photos or have your kids draw some pictures and lay them out to create a photo album or sheet for Dad.
- Create a book about Dad: Moms and kids alike can work together on creating a “Book About Dad.” Write down all the things you love about him, and you can even create a story using your family as the main characters.
- Make a gift basket: Fill a basket or bag with all Dad’s favorite treats. You can get a good assortment of snacks from the Dollar Store or even by using food stamps. Another alternative is to fill a jar with nuts and label it “Nuts About Dad!”
- A homemade card: There are few better ways to share your feelings than through a homemade card. Let your writing do the talking for you and help the kids get down how they feel. Dad will love reading about how his family gushes over him.
- Homemade koozie: Koozies are foam containers that keep cans cold. Get a piece of foam and have your kids color it with markers, then glue it together in the shape of a koozie. Voila! A homemade and sentimental koozie for Dad.
Cheap Father’s Day Gift Ideas
If you have a few dollars to spend, you can buy some economical gifts for Dad like these:
- A subscription to a magazine or monthly club
- A Groupon (discounted) experience in your area
- Tickets to a local baseball game
- A charging dock or station
- An insulated thermos or water bottle
- A shaving kit
- A unique keychain
- Grilling utensils
- Tools or an electric tape measurer
Celebrating Father’s Day
Father’s Day is about celebrating Dad at the end of the day. The best way to do so is by showing him he is appreciated and loved. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to do this – in fact, it can be done for free!
Choose from a free activity, create a DIY gift, or spend a few bucks on something special to show Dad your appreciation. A little love can go a long way.
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