The holidays aren’t just about gifts for him or her. Many Americans use the season as an opportunity to buy a gift for us — that is, a gift for the whole family.
From TVs to kitchen gadgets, it’s an opportunity to splurge on something that will bring your family members together.
To get some ideas for great family gifts, we talked to Jon Helbig, an expert Blue Shirt at a Best Buy store in Little Rock, Arkansas. Here are his top five.
A TV isn’t just a big black box on the wall. It’s the gift of entertainment for years to come.
“When I think back to some of my favorite memories with friends and family, I remember watching movies and major sporting events together,” Jon said. “It’s definitely a great option. It’s something the entire family can connect on.”
And with lots of great deals on 4K TVs this holiday season, this is the perfect time to upgrade your family room to the latest technology.
Gaming and VR
Video games are another great option for family entertainment that will last all year long. And there’s plenty to choose from this season with three new consoles — Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 Pro and Xbox One X — and many new games.
“We have a lot of nieces and nephews, and they love playing multiplayer games together,” Jon said. “It’s a lot of fun, competition and bonding.”
Just be sure to do your research to make sure the games you buy are age appropriate.
Looking to take your gaming fun even further? Virtual reality provides an immersive experience where players use a headset to be transported into lifelike settings.
“It’s usually a one-player game, so you take turns from one player to the next,” Jon said. “But you get a chance to sit behind them and watch on the screen as they play, which can be pretty hilarious.”
A new DSLR or action camera is another great group gift, especially if your family has a big trip planned in the weeks or months ahead.
“A GoPro is a great option for active families who want to get underwater videos, fast-action shots, take it downhill skiing or what have you,” Jon said.
If you want to take the “oohs” and “aahs” to new heights, you could look into a camera-equipped drones, such as the DJI Mavic Pro. It combines the thrill of flying with the ability to get some cool aerial photos and video.
“That’s a really fun experience,” Jon said.
Smart home products
Want to have the coolest, most tech-savvy house on the block? The holidays are a great time to get in on the smart home craze.
“It all starts with voice automation,” Jon said.
He recommends buying a Google Home or Amazon Echo smart speaker. You can use them to listen to music, ask questions and manage your family’s busy schedule.
From there, you can add on devices, such as the Nest thermostat, Ring video doorbell, Philips Hue lighting, Arlo security cameras and WeMo switches that can provide safety and convenience for the whole family.
Does your family tend to gather in the kitchen instead of the living room? Best Buy has lots of great gifts for foodies, too.
Jon recommends a KitchenAid stand mixer, perfect for baking goodies at the holidays and throughout the year. And there are various other attachments you can add, including a pasta roller, food grinder and ice cream maker.
Other popular kitchen options include an Instant Pot pressure cooker, Vitamix blender or an Anova sous vide precision cooker.
Looking for more inspiration? Check out Best Buy’s Gift Center to get ideas for everyone on your shopping list.