Last Minute Ethical Gift Ideas for 2019

At 4DP we believe in being intentional with our shopping dollars, supporting local and sustainable businesses where possible, and using our spend to vote for the kind of world we want to see. We know it’s not always convenient or easy, and that’s why we created this last-minute ethical gift ideas guide.

There are tons of meaningful gift ideas that you can organise at the last minute, while still providing a special something for your friend, colleague or family member. Some of these ideas cost money, some are free (but cost time and attention), some can be wrapped and some can’t. All of them may lead to further ideas.

We hope you find some inspiration here!

Adopt a Koala

Koalas are in a crisis. Support Save the Koala and help fund Koala conservation.

Honey from the neighbourhood

We all know how important bees are to the survival of our planet. Shop honey from your neighbourhood beekeepers!

Macadamia Castle Shop

If you’re local to the Northern Rivers, the Macadamia Castle has lots of regional products available for sale.

Movie voucher

Everyone loves going to the movies, and most cinemas offer gift vouchers. If your gift recipient has children, offer to babysit while they use the voucher you give them!

Ethical voucher

We might be biased (because they’re a client) but we love the idea of shopping for ethical clothing, and Etiko has gift vouchers are delivered by email 😉

Plant a tree

One of the best ways to fight climate change is planting trees. It may be symbolic, but if your gift recipient cares about climate change, plant a tree on their behalf (either in your own backyard or through a local organisation).

A sunset or stargazing

Sometimes the best gift you can give is your time and full attention. Offer to organise a little sunset or stargazing session with your loved one. Take a picnic blanket, something to nibble on and leave your phones at home.

A class or a course

What does your gift recipient love to do? What would they love to learn? You could give them an in-person class such as a pottery workshop, a jewellery workshop, or an online course (Udemy or Coursera are two options).

A Kickstarter project

There is an endless supply of inspiration on Kickstarter. Gift your loved one the gift of something new and unusual. Pick something they might not have thought of themselves!

A subscription to an app

Many of us have free apps on our phones but don’t often purchase the premium version. Think about purchasing a premium subscription to an app they already love, such as Insight Timer for meditations, Medium for reading, even Audible for audiobooks. Put your thinking cap on, consider what they love, and what they might not personally splash out on.

A subscription to a magazine

This is another great last-minute idea and allows you to tailor it to your loved one’s interests. Magazine subscriptions are often something we don’t treat ourselves to, and you can either buy direct from the publisher (like Lovatts), or from a centralised eCommerce store.

Make a donation

There are always wonderful organisations in need of financial support. If you think it would please your gift recipient, you might make a donation to on their behalf. Make it an organisation they care about. Some examples include the Oceanic Research Institute, Synergy Group, Social FuturesRural Fire Service, or School Strike 4 Climate Action.


If you are looking for a last-minute gift idea, we hope you’ve found something in our ethical gift ideas, or are inspired to find something unique. If you are looking to make your business more ‘ethical’ next year, we’d love to have a chat.