Geek Buying Guide

Unless you have the money to upgrade their expensive hardware, buying a gift for the beloved geek in your life can be difficult. Fear not! Below is the perfect holiday buying guide for pleasing their inner nerd.

You must remember though, not all geeks “geek out” over the same things. If you blindly get them something you think they are interested in, it could either be insulting or a waste of money. Before you go buying, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What is their favorite TV show?
  2. Do they play video games? If so, how? (Online, console, etc.)
  3. What kind of phone do they have?
  4. Do they believe that they are in a fandom? (i.e. Trekkie, Brony, Whovian, etc.)
For those who have never heard of the website, Etsy is an online marketplace where people buy and sell handmade goods. It has become the central hub for some of the most interesting and unique gifts out there. Many of the items for sale have to do with some kind of fandom—whether it’s Adventure Time pins or The Legend of Zelda leather wallets, you will most likely find something that special fanboy or girl will absolutely love. Start by typing in their favorite show, video game or fandom, then just take a look around! Get them something that you might enjoy. They will have everything from clothing and accessories to posters and music. Prices can vary depending on what you get them. However, a reasonable spending cap of about $15 can result in one or two very worthwhile gifts.

Invoke your inner geek!
Didn’t see something on Etsy you liked? Make your own gift! Pinterest has hundreds of craft ideas, and many are movie, game or fandom inspired! No good at making things on your own? Go to a custom T-shirt website. Many also offer services to put images or text on more than just shirts: you can customize bags, umbrellas, Frisbees, magnets and even phone cases! Does the My Little Pony lover in your life have a soft spot for Pinky Pie? Then why not order a tree ornament with her face on it? I can’t tell you how excited I would be if I received that gift. These custom printing sites can be a little pricey, but worth it for a truly unique gift.

Support their addiction
Alright, let’s face it, not all geeks are necessarily public about it. But we all have that friend who has spent just a little too much time playing Farmville or has tried sending you over a dozen requests for lives in Candy Crush Saga. Many of these games prompt players to spend their own money to play the game, or else they have to wait hours before they can continue playing. It’s tough to justify spending that money though, because it’s just for a silly game. However, the gift of virtual Facebook cash or a gift card for one of the mobile marketplaces (like Google Play or the Apple
Marketplace) can make those long MAX or bus rides far more enjoyable. Usually $10 will get them a stockpile of the rare commodity in their game, and thus hours of entertainment. It can be the perfect stocking stuffer or small gift.

Did their World of Warcraft subscription dry up, and they’re too broke to renew it? Gift them a few extra months of play time. Many paid online games offer easy-to-use gifting systems and even offer holiday deals or specials. Did they just finish over 100 hours in Skyrim? Then why not offer to get them their choice of extra downloadable content (DLC)? Usually extra additions to games don’t cost any more than $10 to $15 and can be far less expensive than going out and spending $60 on a brand new game.

Remember: Not all geeks are alike, and asking them for ideas or about things they are interested in will result in a much more worthwhile gift.