Experience Gifts to Give your Kids this Holiday Season

Experience Gifts to Give your Kids this Holiday Season. Does it feel like your kids already have more toys than they could ever want?

I love the holidays and the spirit of gift giving but every year I wonder what toys my kids could possibly want and where they will go in our already crowded home? Experience gifts are a great gift option that has benefits for kids, parents, and other gift givers. With an experience gift, your child will create great memories while enjoying something they may not have had the opportunity to try otherwise. An added bonus is that there is no need to store the item after the child has grown tired of playing with it. Here are some great experience gift ideas for every child on your list.

A Season Pass

One of my family’s favorite gifts are seasonal family passes to local attractions. This not only saves us money but it also encourages us to get out, enjoy our city, and make memories along the way. Some attractions to consider are Houston Zoo membership, The Health Museum or Lone Star Flight Museum, Moody Gardens passes, Big River season pass to check out their new amusement park, or swimming lessons at the YMCA.

Subscription Box

A subscription box is a great gift idea for those that are especially tweens and teens that are hard to buy for. They are now available for any age, interest, and price range. If your child loves science, reading, art, games, or sports; chances are there is a subscription box that will fit their interests. Check out Hullaballoo (readers), Silk & Sonders (writers), Little Passports (traveler), Green Kid Crafts (STEAM), KidPik (fashionistas), Doodle Crate (artists), Brick Loot (builders), Lovevery (Babies), Think Outside (Adventurers), and Raddish (chefs)

Classes and Camps

Consider giving the gift of prepaid classes or camps that fit your child’s interests. Luckily, Houston is a mecca for extra curricular opportunities for kids! Classes and camps can be really expensive, but are worth the money and give kids the opportunity to make new friends and try something new.

There is a TON of great options for you to choose from! Vivaldi Music Academy, The Humphries Academy, Kidventure, Camp Allen, Alliance Fencing Academy (Check out Winter Camp Directory).


Consider combining your holiday and vacation budget to take a family trip. Whether it’s an overnight trip to Galveston or a cross country trip to California, traveling is a great way to expose your child to different places and build family memories at the same time.

HFM features great family destinations all year long – visit HoustonFamilyMagazine.com/FamilyTravel for great ideas from coast to coast!


Tickets to a favorite sporting event, concert, or show is a great idea for a gift for the whole family. Combine the gift with a T-shirt to wear to the event or a backstage tour to make the day more memorable.

Theater Under the Stars, Main Street Theater, The Alley Theater, The 1894 Grand Opera (Galveston), Smart Financial Center, The Houston Symphony and Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion all have great family friendly shows and events year round. Check out Center Stage every month for great ideas.

Box it Up

If your budget is a little smaller, try putting together several things in a box for your child to enjoy. Create a movie box with a movie or video rental gift card, candy, popcorn, and a warm blanket so the family can enjoy a movie night at home. Combine art supplies, a sketch book, paints, and other craft items for an art box. You could also put together a cooking box, ingredients for homemade playdough with cookie cutters, or a gardening box with seeds, gardening gloves and tools. Get creative and combine your child’s interests to put together a customized box.

Adventure Gifts

For the adventurous child, look for experience gifts that give them a chance to try something they wouldn’t normally get to do. Some ideas could include horseback riding, fishing, camping, rock climbing, indoor skydiving, or a day at a gym with an obstacle course or trampolines.

Whatever you decide, think outside the box. Slow down and don’t get caught up in the fast pace of the season. Really think about what works for your family and don’t get overwhelmed by all the things you think your child needs. Go with what you KNOW they need – more time with family & friends!

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