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The 25 Best Retirement Gift Ideas For A Retiring Colleague in 2023!

Purchasing a gift for a retiring co-worker

We have created a selection of the 25 best retirement gift ideas to help with the selection process!

A retired woman in a studio
Photo by Artem Labunsky on Unsplash

Est reading time: 10m 5s

“Retirement: a time to do all of the things you never had time to do when you worked” - Catherine Pulsifer

How they fill it is at their discretion but for us, we have a responsibility to make this a special moment in the lives of your retiring colleague. 

I want to talk about group gifts today, group gifts for retiring persons that can be given by you in good faith. 

We consider ourselves a somewhat knowledgeable authority on the subject of group gifts, and once more, aided by the internet - I believe we have compiled a stellar list of suggestions for you all today! 

So if you’re wondering what’s a good retirement gift for him? 

A good retirement gift for her? Or, a good retirement gift for your dad, mum, boss - anything!

We’ve got you covered. 

The 25 Best Retirement Gifts For A Co-worker

A laptop, a book; a cup of tea
Photo by Callum Shaw on Unsplash

1. Personalised Flower Box 

This is the first entry of the gardening section of the blog.

Do you know what retirees do a lot of? 


Seriously, I’ve lived with retired people before, they all have the greenest of green fingers - they can’t get enough!

I’m not suggesting that every retiree enjoys gardening, but it's a pretty safe bet when trying to think of something thoughtful as a gift.

I’m suggesting a personalised flower box because it’s a cute way of saying thank you.

Why it’s a good idea: Personalised gifts are good, flowers are even better; you can’t really go wrong!

2. A Retirement Plant

A plant grows up the walls of a house
Photo by Callum Shaw on Unsplash

Similarly, contributing to the rise of the houseplant, a large house plant gives a responsibility in a way that is also full of gratitude. 

Big trees are coming into popularity, they’re fun. 

You can even upgrade the gift with a whole plant pot, feed, books etc… craft a little box set, the sky's the limit!

Why it’s a good idea: Similar to the flower box, but a bit more ornate (especially the indoor plants)

3. A Thank You Cookie selection

One of the biggest things people want to feel upon retiring is that they were valued and what they did made a difference. Be that with customers or with colleagues, whether they were in a leadership position or took new starters under their wing for training and guidance. Don't forget that a simple 'thank you' goes a long way.

What better way to say it than with some delicious cookies presented in a bespoke way.

Check out Mrs. Fields offerings here and join the many thousands of people giving the gift of deliciousness as a melt-in-the-mouth token of their gratitude.

Why it’s a good idea: they are delicious, are an overt token of your appreciation and work wonderfully as part of the overall gifting package!

4. An Experimental Experience

Roll the dice, roll the dice; if you fancy yourself to roll the dice with a gift, why not do something that could be potentially crazy but also insanely memorable? 

It’s pushing the boat out, but how about something mad like skydiving? Zip wire? 

It’s an opportunity to push them outside of their comfort zone one last time before settling into a life of monotonous only fools and horses reruns.

Why it’s a good idea: It’s a final chance to see the retiree off with an experience that will push them from their comfort zone!

5. A Spa Day 

A bottle of oil at the spa
Photo by Christin Hume on Unsplash

I’ve featured Spa days amongst a host of these recent blogs; with good reason, work represents a form of stress in our lives and a spa day is a direct remedy to such stresses.

It’s a fairly safe bet and can be given as a group gift.

Why it’s a good idea: It’s a fairly safe way to give somebody an experience they will genuinely love!

6. A Whiskey Subscription

Pt1 of a double whammy, this idea is applicable across both wine and whiskey. A gift that is perfect for Whiskey lovers, lovers of learning and those just looking for a hobby.

Our top picks can be found here: 

Flaviar - - Educational

Whisky tasting company - - For Gifting

Craft whisky club - - For Craft Whiskeys

7. A Wine Subscription

Hits on all the similar themes that the whiskey subscription does, but with wine!

Here are our top picks: 

Wanderlust Wine Club - - Budget Friendly

The Sourcing Table Wine Club - - Fine Wine

8. A Gardening 101 Tool Set

A vegetable in the ground
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Back to green, green fingers. To help them along their journey of soiling discovery, provide them with everything they need to lay down the foundations of their newly set-to-be nurtured garden. 

Why it’s a good idea: Gardening is a popular activity amongst the retired population. This gift will set them off on their journey! 

9. Monthly Book Subscription 

Retired people have nothing but time, this is a call to action, a good time is a time spent reading; with a monthly book subscription, you can keep a steady stream of letters and words coming their way. 

Why it’s a good idea: Reading being a popular retirement activity, a book subscription provides them with a steady flow of books so that they never run out of material.

10. Whiskey Making Kit

A whiskey making kit, for the retiree who would like to try something new, building with hands and obviously is a lover of whiskey!

The kit comes with everything it says on the tin, all the tools; the ingredients to make Whiskey at home!

Why it’s a good idea: A whiskey making kit allows them to engage in a new hobby surrounding something they love!

11. Fitbit (Or Alternative Sports Watch…)

Having recently retired, the retiree is afforded a lot of time to get fit! It could have been a hobby for them anyway, or perhaps something they wanted to achieve post-work

A Fit bit represents a good way to start them along that path, allowing them to track their goals, heart rate, statistics and many more!

Why it’s a good idea: A Fitbit starts them on the path of fitness, now that they have the time to commit to a routine!

12. Kindle 

A kindle on a blue backround
Photo by Kwame Anim on Unsplash

Do you know how much time you spend working as opposed to reading? It’s a lot, especially for those who consider reading a primary source of downtime. The kindle gift is wonderful because it gives access to a wonderful plethora of reading materials but in one place! 

Why it’s a good idea: Giving them access to a wonderful range of books, without the clutter!

13. A Meal Out For Two

If you work, and you care about your work, sometimes other elements of your life can suffer, specifically, relationships. 

A meal out for two (or three or four) can give the retiree the chance to spend some quality time with somebody important to them, celebrating their newfound time to really give this area of their lives some TLC 

Why it’s a good idea: Beyond the relationship and quality time malarkey, it’s also just a really lovely gift to give; it’s also quite a safe gift to give as well!

14. A Meal In For Two

A Bowl of Kale
Photo by Kody Dahl on Unsplash

A meal out for two the sequel sees us bring the meal out into a meal in; nobody saw this coming! 

Here’s how it works: you and your colleagues provide the ingredients, the wine, and whatever else might go into a nice evening meal (candles?) and then you dress up in a lovely little hamper. That’s the gift!

Why it’s a good idea: Perhaps going out is not really their thing? This is just another variation on a theme that in many ways becomes more personal! 

15. Golf Clubs 

Taking another leaf from the book of retirement clichés. Retired people like to play golf (in between gardening I imagine…) 

Set them off by providing them with a shiny new set of golfing sticks! 

As somebody who knows nothing about golf, that’s the furthest I’m willing to go with the golfing analogy… 

Why it’s a good idea: Hold onto your hats, we’re off to cliché town… But in all honesty, these clichés exist for a reason, a solid retirement gift. 

16. Weekend Break

A slight upgrade on the meal out, but a short weekend trip can be a great way to mark the start of a new chapter in life. 

Slightly more expensive than some of the other suggestions, but if financed via a whip-round and presented as a group gift, it can be a really special gesture.

Why it’s a good idea: It’s a good solid way to usher in a new era of freedom!

17. Vinyl Turntable 

A Turntable plays Blackstar by David Bowie
Photo by Ivan Dorofeev on Unsplash

For the music lover - Vinyl is largely considered a hobby nowadays, it’s also the classic way to listen to music, for the purists. 

It’s a great retirement gift because now they have the time to sit down and really dig into those classic records they may not have had time to indulge with before, It’s a very consuming experience! 

Why it’s a good idea: For the audiophile, it’s providing classic escapism in their favourite records. 

18. A Retirement Handbook

This is just in case inspiration runs low now that they should be daily faced with possibilities of an infinite capacity. A retirement handbook should always be in the nearest bedside cabinet to waft along with inspiration in epic doses.

Life is getting quite exciting! 

Why it’s a good idea: Because endless possibilities can be overwhelming if not managed, this little guidebook can help with that!

19. A Day Clock

Having recently retired, it seems futile counting the hours anymore, try counting the days, it’s theirs to do what they like anyway.

Why it’s a good idea: It’s a humorous way to say goodbye, celebrating their transcendence beyond timekeeping and moving at their own pace. 

20. LED Home Bar Sign

An LED sign read "KALE SUCKS"
Photo by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash

Every bar must be christened with its own name and commemorative sign. This gift is great because you can personalise their home bar with whatever message you like, a final chance at some banter!

Why it’s a good idea: You can personalise a homemade LED sign with whatever message you like, be it heartfelt, or just a joke!

21. Massage Device

Because working is hard and they’ve completed a lifetime's worth of it, a massage device helps by starting to pay off that accumulated cortisol debt. Also, because a massage device is portable, they can conveniently call upon its unwinding effects whenever they need to!

Why it’s a good idea: A portable spa, allows them to relax and unwind whenever they feel like it! 

22. Personalised Chess Set

A wooden chess set
Photo by Shannon Potter on Unsplash

A quaint and tiny chessboard with a personal message on it. It’s direct from you to the person retiring and is a lovely multi-functional gift. I say multifunctional because it can serve as both an ornament and a brain stimulator/social activity tool… 

Also, because most are made from wood, it allows you to engrave a lovely farewell message from both yourself and your team, expressing gratitude and appreciation for all the things the recipient has done. 

Why it’s a good gift: This is a good gift because of its multifunctional ness, including ornamental value and social value, not to mention its potential for personalisation.

23. BBQ Set

Weather pending, this is the ultimate tribute to laid back and all-around good times. Encourage them to BBQ everything, and own the role of king of being laid back.

Honestly, you can BBQ meat, sure. Did you know, you can also BBQ salad, porridge, eggs - everything! 

Why it’s a good idea: You’re providing the tools for them to take their smokey meat up another gear; friends and family will be eternally grateful for their smokey meat (or veg) 

24. Personalised Candle Set

Did you know that it’s possible to have candles made that are personalised with really sincere and touchy heartfelt messages? Well, you can, and it so happens that it’s also a fantastic retirement gift. 

Quick fact about candles (as if from nowhere) - scented candles can have a big influence on your taste buds, so this gift is really a tickler for two of your favourite senses.

Why it’s a good idea: Because candles smell nice, and you can personalise them. 

25. Throw Them A Party!

Party Guests kick yellow balloons about
Photo by Raychan on Unsplash

If all else should fail, you can do a whip-round, take the budget and commit to celebrating their career by throwing a massive party. It may not be as permanent as the other suggestions, but done correctly, it could be twice as memorable! 

Why it’s a good idea: You get a lot of people together, in a room and celebrate the achievements of the retiree. It’s a fantastic way to show gratitude to the person and celebrate the legacy that they now leave behind!

How to do it? Whilst our CEO might be a party planning legend, the rest of us are probably not best placed to give you the tried and tested tips and techniques you are looking for. Luckily, our friends at Buzzy Tricks are and they've very kindly written this blog to talk you through how to deliver this mammoth task!


That concludes that the prime selection of gift ideas, all lined up in a row ready for selection. 

You’re standing in a blooming spring field; beside you, there are copious amounts of old people, they are floating up towards their new lives in the sky.

These are lives filled with endless possibilities, Bargain Hunt re-runs and gardening.

Ultimately, retirement is about a celebration of careers and a laying down of a daily ritual that has come to define their lives in the last however many years they’ve been at it.  

It’s also about restfulness and reflection

They now have the opportunity to pause and look back on all the things they’ve accomplished and all the people they have positively impacted in their working lives. 

Hopefully, a gift will help them to celebrate this moment; the lubrication of gratitude is always met with a similar sentiment. 

It’s a mutual transaction. 

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