What Does Your Dad Really Want for Father’s Day?

For Father’s Day, the best gifts are free

father's day(TORONTO, ON) – Father’s Day is just around the corner, and if you are worried that you don’t know what to buy or you’re not sure how you will afford the perfect gift, we have good news for you.  That’s not what dad wants.

He changed your diapers, taught you how to ride your bike, and helped you move into your first apartment.  All he wants in return is a little family time on Father’s Day.

A recent study from IPG Mediabrands shows that one in three (34 per cent) dads don’t want a gift at all.  Meanwhile, most fathers (56 per cent) would really prefer spending time with immediate or extended family.

Jeff Schwartz, executive director of Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada and father of three, is not surprised by the results.

Unlike Christmas or birthdays, we have really seen a move toward non-materialistic gifts for Father’s Day,” says Schwartz.  “Your father doesn’t want you to waste money on a gift he doesn’t need; he wants to spend time with you.”

Indeed, the survey found showed some mismatched gift buying:

 What people are getting dadWhat dad really wants
Gift card29%12%
A restaurant meal18%22%
Electronics 16%10%


Schwartz worries that some people are doubling-down on bad gift decisions, by spending money they don’t have on something their father doesn’t want.

People can be all too willing to charge gifts to their credit card,” says Schwartz.  “But if they aren’t paying off those balances immediately, they’ll be paying a lot more for that gift in interest.”

Consolidated Credit has put together four ways to show your dad that you were listening to him when he preached financial responsibility:

  • Offer your services – Whether it’s mowing the lawn, tinkering in the garage, or washing the car, your father always has something to do around the house.  On Father’s Day, take care of the chores and let your old man put his feet up.
  • Gourmet grilling – There aren’t too many fathers that can say no to barbecue.  To mark the occasion, forego the standard fare and look up an interesting recipe for the BBQ and bring all the material to your father’s backyard.  Be sure to pair it with a cold beer!
  • Dining out – A restaurant meal is one of the more popular gift options, but if you want to cut down on a big bill and avoid long wait times (because plenty of other people had the same idea), take dad to a brunch or go for mid-afternoon appetizers and drinks.  You’ll enjoy all the same joys of dining out at a much lower cost.
  • Take a hike – Pack a lunch, get out to a nearby piece of wilderness, and go on a nature hike with your father.  You’ll get some exercise, relaxation, and the peaceful surroundings will really give you the chance to chat with no distractions.  It might be a good idea to ban the smartphone for this one.


About Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc.: 
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada is a national non-profit credit counselling organization that teaches consumers about personal finance.

For more information or to request an interview with Jeffrey Schwartz, please contact:

Jacob MacDonald, Manager of Community and Public Relations, Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc., T: 416-915-7283 ext.1041, C: 647-390-5253, F: 416-915-5200, E: [email protected]

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