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25 Best Budget Gift Ideas for Employees Under $5

The holiday season is the best time to show your employees how much you appreciate their contributions to your company. A small token of your appreciation, such as a thoughtful, practical gift, can help boost company morale, promote a positive company culture, and create a sense of belonging.

For small to midsize companies with a limited budget, inexpensive employee appreciation gifts are the perfect way to spread a little holiday cheer around the office. For larger corporations, buying bulk gifts under $5 is a cost-effective way to ensure all your employees feel valued.

Try a pair of custom gloves if you want a seasonal gift to celebrate the holiday spirit. The two-tone gloves can be customized with your brand logo and colors and feature touchscreen-friendly fingertips so your employees can still scroll their smartphone or tablet while keeping their fingers cozy.

Your employees are never too old to enjoy some fun and games around the office. Small puzzles like a Rubik’s Cube, travel-size tic-tac-toe, or a Tangle® are the perfect stocking stuffer and can be an excellent gift for your employees to encourage some downtime to refocus their mind.

The festive season is the time to eat, drink, and be merry. Thrill your foodie employees with snack packs from iPromo. Each pack features buttered popcorn, crunchy mixed nuts, and a granola bar to satisfy snack cravings — and they come in a convenient cardboard box that you can customize with your company artwork.

Other practical gifts for employees to use at home or around the office include branded lanyards for organizing keys, USB flash drives, insulated water bottles or soup mugs, or custom earbuds. At iPromo, you are sure to find the perfect gift to show your employees how much you value their hard work.

1. Tote Bags

To start the talk about employee appreciation gifts under $5, we have the classic tote bag. As long as you make sure you buy the highest quality options, you’ll have a perfect fit in terms of something that is practical and stylish. As reusable grocery bags have become more popular, there’s even more use for tote bags.

Custom Tote Bags Impressions nad Styles

2. Smartphone Wallets

When you’re on a tight budget for gifts, looking for practical items is always the smart way to go. Smartphone wallets serve as a great example. Just about everyone has one, and these are an effective way to make sure that essential business cards and other items never get lost.

3. Gloves

We’re going to start heading into cool weather soon, so show your employees you’re thinking about them with a set of touchscreen-friendly gloves. Remember, if you’re putting in an order from iPromo, you can have a varied set of sizes to make sure that everyone has something that fits.

4. Soup Mugs

The classic coffee mug is a staple of employee gifts, but you can take things a step further by buying this soup mug as well. With a different design as well as an accompanying spoon, you have something perfectly suited for winter weather and keeping warm at home or in the office.

5. Travel Kit

This super-affordable kit is great for the frequent traveler in your office. Whether for business or pleasure, this has a travel pillow, as well as an eye mask and earplugs to help them relax until reaching their destination. In addition, you can keep them all in the accompanying bag until they are ready to be used.

Custom Travel Pillow Kit

6. Writing Pads

If you’re looking for other gifts for employees under $5, these are a great option. Some people prefer to use these for keeping schedules, others for doodles and other creative work.

7. Salad Cups

Eating healthy can get to be a hassle sometimes, but these are a great way for people to enjoy their lunch at work and on the go. Salad cups are designed to help keep the food cool and fresh to enjoy throughout the day. In addition, some options also include added salad forks and cups to store your dressing. Best of all, these serve as effective promotional gifts under $5.

Custom Salad Cups

8. Flashlights

Whether you’re using them as a part of a car emergency kit or stored away at home in the event of a blackout, a flashlight is one of those things a lot of people don’t think about getting until they absolutely need it. Help your team stay ahead of the curve with this smart and practical gift.

9. Business Card Cases

People may not necessarily think of these as a true employee appreciation gift, but there are two scenarios where they make a perfect fit. If someone on your team recently got hired or had a major promotion, this is a great way to show you believe in them and welcome them in their new role for a long time to come.

Custom Business Card Cases

10. Mason Jars/Mason Mugs

These jars have become a staple of many kitchens in order to preserve certain foods, and in some cases, have even been utilized for decorative purposes. Giving a versatile gift like this to your employees is a nice way of trying to provide something for everyone, even if you’re dealing with cash constraints.

11. Puzzles

Sometimes, a little brain teaser is exactly what you need to snap back into focus. Small puzzles are a great way to amuse yourself for a little bit while recharging your batteries during a tough workday. As an added bonus, these can serve as a form of entertainment for families with small children. Multipurpose gifts are great options if your budget is limited.

Custom Puzzles

12. Snack Packs

If your employees are trying to avoid cluttering up their homes during the holiday season, a snack pack is a great way to show your appreciation while helping them out. Not only do they get to enjoy a favorite treat, there’s nothing to put away when they’re done!

13. Lanyard USB Drives

One of our top sellers, this is a great option because these days, just about everyone needs a flash drive. Whether they’re transferring files for work or just want to bring some photos to show the family during the holidays, this lanyard makes it much harder for you to lose things. In general, the entire USB drive family is a great option when it comes to affordable employee gifts.

Custom Lanyard USB Flash Drives

14. Phone Stands & Grips

Whether you’re trying to video chat with someone or playing a game, manipulating the touchscreen of a smartphone can be rather difficult to do. These stands help you keep your phone on your desk or other area to take that struggle out of things.

15. Earbuds

Whether you’re waiting for public transportation or taking a job, music makes everything better. Giving your employees a spare set of earbuds is great to make sure they don’t have to stop their listening fun when their original pair stops working.

Custom Earbuds Combo Phone Stand and Cleaner

16. Tumblers

When talking about personalized gifts under 5, these are always a favorite. On top of being affordable on your end, these are always useful to avoid relying on paper and Styrofoam cups. A tumbler is a classic personalized gift, whether your employees are going to be taking them on the go or just using them at home to store hot tea or coffee.

17. Timers

Whether you’re cooking, exercising, or just need to see how long something takes, these timers make for a handy all-purpose tool around the house. Attach them to your refrigerator or keep them in your toolbox until needed.

Custom Timers

18. Calendars

People may see calendars as a little bland at first glance, but there’s a lot of opportunity for these to serve as thoughtful gifts. Simply choose from one of our many designs and themes for something your employee is interested in.

19. Microfiber Cloths

Stands aren’t the only cheap phone accessory that you can get as a gift. These are quite handy for helping employees keep the screens of their phones clean and unscratched. You can opt for microfiber or other types of materials.

Custom Microfiber Cloths

20. Knife Sets

If you see someone constantly bringing silverware from home to eat, this gift will help save them the trouble. Simply enjoy your lunch, wash them off, bring them home, and repeat, without worrying if you left that fork at the office.

21. Stress Relievers

As employee gifts under $5 go, a stress reliever is one of the best. Having a lower budget means you may not have as many options to work with, but a smart gag gift is one of the best ways to show your thoughtfulness and appreciation for cheap. On top of this, every workplace is going to have times where things get tough, and this can make for a handy tool at those times.

Custom Stress balls

22. Bottle Openers

Be ready to enjoy a drink at any occasion with these small, handy branded bottle openers. This particular one also comes with a small flashlight to cut down on the small gadgets you need around the house.

23. Wine Glasses

If wine is more your preference, these branded wine glasses are great for entertaining or just relaxing with a drink at home.

custom wine glasses

24. Branded Pens

It’s a classic, some may say a cliche, but branded pens are staples of corporate swag packages and employee gifts for a reason. It’s useful at home and at work, and is affordable as well. Combine it with a few other options on this list for a cheap gift bundle.

25. Scented Candles

To close our talk about employee gifts under $5,  let’s talk about another classic stress reliever, scented candles. Whether you plan on using these for true aromatherapy or just want a nice scent around the home, these mark for a great evergreen gift. Your employees can hold onto them until they start to feel worn out, then light the candle up.

Custom Scented Candles

It can be difficult to show appreciation for your team’s hard work when you’re tight under budget constraints. However, some smart use of promotional products under $5 is a great way to accomplish this without breaking the bank. Even with all the options we’ve covered on this list, there’s still plenty more to choose from at iPromo.  Reach out to us today for a quote.