20+ Special Retirement Gift Ideas for Women


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It can be tricky coming up with gift ideas for some people. That’s why so many of us turn to gift cards for restaurants or big box stores. While there’s nothing wrong with that, it is sometimes nice to choose items that are more personal, especially when a special woman in your life is retiring.

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People usually only retire once, so it can be a big deal. Acknowledging their time in the workforce and their contributions to the company is important. It’s likely the retiree spent a significant portion of her time at the office. She probably considers it a huge, and important, part of her life. Try to take that into consideration before you purchase anything. 

If you know the retiree well, you probably already have a gift in mind. If you don’t know them well try to find out as much about them as you can. This will help you avoid embarrassing situations.

You wouldn’t want to buy a bottle of champagne for someone who doesn’t drink. Or buy a gag gift for someone who won’t appreciate the joke. You can look at your coworker’s social media pages to see what is important to her. If she doesn’t have social media, consider going in on a gift with some of your other colleagues. A shared gift can be more meaningful, and allows you to pool your money to get something more substantial. 

Regardless of how well you know the retiree the following list can help you think of gift ideas for them.

Cheap Retirement Gift Ideas for Women

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to give the perfect gift. Sometimes the best gift doesn't cost anything at all. Here are some ideas for inexpensive retirement gifts.

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1. Office memorabilia

Does your company have a long history of serving your community? If so, find a unique item from the company’s past to give to the person who is retiring. This could be as simple as an article of clothing, a piece of vintage letterhead, or an old piece of advertising. 

If the retiree has been working at the company for most of her career, she has spent a lot of her time there. She is probably proud of her history there. Honor her contribution by giving her something that reminds her of her time with the company. 

2. Framed photo

If your company hosted a lot of events, there are probably a lot of photos floating around. You might be able to find office snapshots taken from the retiree’s early days with the company.

Surprise her at the retirement party by presenting her with some framed pictures or a photo album. The retiree will love walking down memory lane and looking back at all the people she worked with. Everyone will get a kick out of the professional clothing of the previous decades.

3. A bundle of thank you notes from coworkers, clients, and customers

Ask the people in the office to write down memories of the person retiring. You could also reach out to clients or customers that the retiree worked with over the years and ask them to write notes.

Buy a simple scrapbook and create a book of these letters. This gift will cost very little, but it will be a treasured possession for the one who receives it.

4. Charm bracelet

Buy an inexpensive charm bracelet for the woman who is retiring. Find charms that easily connect to the work the retiree did. You could also try to find charms that depict the number of years the person worked. Or you could even choose charms that represent office jokes.

You may have to make this purchase online, especially if you are looking for hard-to-find charms. Don’t wait until the last minute to buy this gift.

5. Bird feeder or birdseed

We all know the stereotype of how much senior citizens like watching birds. Why not celebrate that stereotype by buying a bird feeder or birdseed for the person who is retiring?

She may look at it as a joke gift and laugh. Or she may be delighted at the idea of drawing more birds to her backyard. Regardless of how she takes it, everyone wins especially the birds.

6. Netflix, Hulu, or Disney+ subscription

Now that your friend is retired, she will have all the time in the world to binge-watch TV shows. Before purchasing this gift make sure your friend doesn’t already have a subscription. You may want to provide your friend with a list of shows that you think she would enjoy.

This gift would be especially nice if your office bonded over a love of certain TV shows. You could consider giving her a list of the staff’s favorite TV shows. That way, she can finally know what everyone was talking about! 

7. Books

Is the retiree looking forward to having more time for reading? Give her a stack of books that you have enjoyed. Your friend probably won’t mind receiving used books.

Similar to the subscription gift, provide her with a list of everyone’s favorite books. That will keep her reading for quite some time. And you can add a bookmark with a quote about retirement to personalize the gift further. 

Practical Retirement Gift Ideas for Women

There are practical gifts and there are less practical gifts. Some women love receiving less practical gifts, while other women enjoy gifts that they can use during their retirement. If you are purchasing a gift for a woman who appreciates functional items, here are some ideas.

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8. Carry-on bag

Does the retiree have a list of travel locations on her bucket list? Buy a cute tote bag that she can use as her carry-on when she flies to her destinations. Make sure the bag has a zipper, so whatever things she has inside don’t fall out while the bag is stored.

And make sure it’s the right size. There are so many options out there, it can be hard to know the right size. But the salesperson at the store should be able to help you. 

9. Sunglasses

Everyone needs a nice pair of sunglasses. Not only is this gift practical, but if you choose the right frames, it can be a little fun as well. It’s probably best to avoid this option if the person in question wears glasses.

They’ll need specific lenses for their sunglasses, and probably already have a pair of sunglasses they love. 

10. E-reader

Perhaps the retiree would enjoy an e-reader. She could not only use it while traveling, but it would be helpful to have at appointments as well.

This gift is perfect not only for readers but for game players as well.

11. Gardening tools

Is your friend excited to spend more time with her flower or vegetable garden? Buy her some new gardening tools. Make sure to purchase more practical items, as well as some that are only for decoration. You may want to include some plants or seeds in the gift as well.

12. Puzzles

Is your friend worried about how she is going to fill her days after retirement? Buy a puzzle for your friend. She may develop a new hobby from the gift.

And who doesn’t love getting lost in a puzzle on a snowy, winter day?

13. Socks

You can’t give a more practical gift than a pair of socks. Buy a pattern that reflects the personality of the retiree. For an added gift, try purchasing socks from a company that gives a pair to the needy for every purchased pair.

14. Robe or PJs

Your friend will love drinking coffee while wearing her new robe. She will smile as she thinks of her old coworkers navigating through crazy traffic to get to the office.

She will probably text you a selfie showing off her fuzzy slippers to brag about her new lifestyle.

Easy Retirement Gift Ideas for Women

Is the retirement party this afternoon? Do you have a gift yet? Here are some items that you can grab quickly to commemorate your friend or coworker’s special day.

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15. A plant

Run to your local florist, nursery, or grocery store. Find and purchase a healthy and low-maintenance indoor house plant. Most people appreciate having several plants to decorate a room.

If you aren’t sure how sturdy the plant you’re considering is, check the tag. It should tell you how much water and sunlight the plant needs to thrive. 

16. A gift certificate to a spa

Run to a local spa or nail salon on your lunch hour and grab a gift certificate for the retiree. If you can, figure out how to include a tip in your gift.

That way, your friend doesn’t have to think about that when she goes. It’ll be relaxing and totally paid for!

17. Amazon gift card

You won’t even need to leave the office to purchase an Amazon gift card for the person who is retiring. The giftee can choose to buy practical items with the gift, or something special just for her.

18. Cash

We know that money isn’t the most exciting gift in the world, but it will do in a pinch. Ask others to contribute to give the gift more "umph." If you have time, you can consult Pinterest to find a unique way to present the gift to the retiree.

19. Accessories

It doesn’t take long to purchase a cashmere scarf or a pair of gloves at a local department store. You could also consider jewelry, such as a necklace or earrings.

Not only do you not have to sort through sizes, but most department stores will wrap the item for free. 

20. Water bottle or coffee cup

We bet that there is a coffee shop located less than a mile from your office. Buy a high-end water bottle or travel coffee mug. Everyone needs to stay hydrated. These gifts are easy and practical. And they’re good for the environment!

Finding the Right Gift

Do none of these gift ideas seem appropriate? Why not get a subscription to a retirement magazine for your friend. Many women still enjoy flipping through magazines while drinking coffee in the morning.  

Does it seem as if retirement is ages away for you? Most retirees remark how quickly the years pass, so it will be here before you know it. 

Even if you are young, it is not too early to start preparing for retirement. It is also never too early to start end-of-life planning. No one is guaranteed a set amount of time on this Earth. Make sure you make your desires known to your loved ones.

Let your family know whether you would rather be buried or cremated. Pick the music that will be played at your funeral. Don’t think of this as a morbid task — we will all die one day, so why not face up to it? Also, making your own end-of-life choices is one of the kindest things you can do for your family members. Why not get started today?

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