3 Surprisingly Simple Ways to Save on Father’s Day

By Courtney Jespersen Lifestyle and Budget NerdWallet.com

No one wants to skimp on a gift for dad, but let’s be realistic: Traditional gifts like a grill or dress clothes can get expensive.

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Father’s Day shoppers are expected to spend an average of $134.75 for the holiday this year, according to the National Retail Federation. That’s an all-time high in the NRF survey’s 15-year history.

But don’t fret. We have three surprisingly simple ways to protect your pocketbook this June 18.

1. Skip the usual

Tools and electronics are two go-to Father’s Day gift categories, but they’re not always affordable. Instead of picking something traditional, get creative and shop according to what’s on sale.

Father’s Day is in June every year, which just so happens to coincide with a big sale season in the retail world. Cash in on semiannual sales, Father’s Day promotions and other deals as you decide where to shop and what to buy.

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For the outdoorsy dad, Cabela’s has savings of up to 70% off. For the active dad, Dick’s Sporting Goods has deals on drivers, fishing lures and more. And for the sensitive dad, Bath & Body Works has slashed prices on candles, hand soaps and body care products, while Yankee Candle has taken 75% off select merchandise.

» MORE: How to save money

2. Buy yours, get his free

Father’s Day presents don’t have to be wrapped in shiny paper and topped with a bow. Skip the wrapping and opt for an experience like taking your dad out to eat. You’ll enjoy quality time — and could snag a discount on the bill.

For instance, at Firehouse Subs, get a free medium sub when you buy an additional medium or large sub, side and drink on June 18 at participating locations. Present the offer at the time of purchase.

Or forget the meal altogether and spend a day adventuring. At the Florida Aquarium, dad gets in free on Father’s Day weekend with purchase of a full paid admission at the ticket office. Look for similar offerings at museums, parks or aquariums in your neck of the woods.

» MORE: Shop thoughtfully for dad’s gift and earn rewards, too

3. Take the pressure off

Still don’t feel like these options are quite right? One of the best and most affordable gifts you can give your dad is a day to himself.

In fact, 87% of dads surveyed by cash-back site Ebates said that a great way to honor them this holiday was to let them enjoy activities without the kids.

Let dad loose for a day of fishing with his buddies or woodworking in his garage. In the meantime, you can take care of a project for him around the house to free up his day. The cost? Nothing more than your time.

If you’re still scratching your head as you search for the perfect present, check out our go-to recommendations for affordable gift ideas for any occasion.

Courtney Jespersen is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: courtney@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @courtneynerd.

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