The best last-minute Valentine’s Day gifts that arrive on time


Let’s face it: Most of us have put off buying a gift for Valentine’s Day before. Luckily, there’s still time to pick up before Monday, February 14, especially if you know where to look. To help you find the right gift, we’ve gathered some ideas that will arrive on time. These include deals on smart screens like Amazon’s Echo Show 8, as well as retro-inspired instant cameras, AirPods, and even a portable messaging gun.

For those who have been waiting for the all last minute we also added some digital gift ideas including digital gift cards and games. And remember, if you need even more suggestions, you can always check out our 2022 Valentine’s Day Gift Guide. There you’ll find a selection of ideas spanning both the technical and non-technical spectrums, some of which start as low as $10.

A few presents that (have to) arrive on time

Photo by Dan Seifert / The Verge

Amazon’s second-generation Echo Show 8 offers access to the same Alexa capabilities as Amazon’s Echo speakers, and makes a great gift that can serve a variety of use cases. For example, your partner or friend can use the smart display as a digital photo frame, or to make Zoom calls, watch videos or control a variety of smart home devices. The 2021 model also has an improved 13-megapixel camera and faster performance than its predecessor, which is one of the many reasons we think it’s the best smart display for most people.

Normally $129.99, the Echo Show 8 is currently on sale at Best Buy for $89.99, an all-time low. The retailer even throws in free shipping so you don’t have to pay extra to get it in time for the holidays. Read our review

Echo Show 8 (second generation)

The Echo Show 8 is the mid-sized smart display in Amazon’s current Echo range and can be used to display weather, news, calendars, shopping lists and more. You can also use it to control your smart home devices, watch streaming video or listen to music. It even supports video calling via Zoom and Amazon’s Alexa calling service.

Fujifilm’s competitively priced Instax Square SQ1 camera prints photos on Polaroid-framed film.
Photo by Becca Farsace / The Verge

Instant cameras are quirky gifts that you can often gift to anyone, regardless of age or holiday. Fujifilm’s Instax Square SQ1 is similar to classic Polaroids — it can even print square photos on Polaroid-framed film — but comes with a few modern features, including a one-touch selfie mode and mirror. Regularly $119.99, Amazon currently sells it in a variety of colors for around $100, its lowest price yet. Amazon Prime members should be able to get it in time for the holidays, but if your local Best Buy has the camera in stock, you can also pick it up at a brick-and-mortar store for the same price. Read our review.

Instax Square SQ1

The Instax Square SQ1 is Fujifilm’s point-and-shoot Instax camera released in 2020 that prints photos on Polaroid-framed film. Rather than adding more technology, Fujifilm has made the SQ1 as simple as possible.

Apple’s third-generation AirPods make great gifts for music lovers or friends, with support for features such as spatial audio, which can make listening to select content a more immersive experience. The wireless earbuds are also sweat and water resistant and come in handy at the gym or on a run, making them a great buy for the fitness fan in your life.

While these typically retail for $179, they’re currently on sale on Amazon for $149.98, their second-best price to date. Prime members should receive them in time for the holidays, but if not, Target is also offering the same $30 discount with local pickup. Best Buy, meanwhile, is selling the latest AirPods for $169 with free shipping, meaning they should arrive in time for the holidays. Read our full review

AirPods (third generation)

The latest entry-level AirPods look similar to their slimmer sibling, the AirPods Pro, and feature a new charging case and shorter stems. They are also water resistant, unlike the 2019 model, and have better battery life.

If you’re hesitant to book a massage this year due to the ongoing pandemic, buying a massage gun like the Theragun Mini may be your best alternative. The three-speed massager provides a safe way to give your partner an excellent soft tissue massage from the comfort (and safety) of your home. Plus, it’s compact and quiet enough that your partner or friend can take it with them wherever they need some muscle relaxation.

While it’s not currently on sale, you can pick up the Message Gun in time for Valentine’s Day for about $199 at Amazon or Best Buy, the latter of which offers free shipping. Keep in mind that only Amazon Prime subscribers will receive it in time for the holidays.

Theragun Mini

The Theragun Mini Massager is a small, ultra-portable massager that is quiet and effective at relieving muscle soreness and melting away tension.

Now is a good time to buy home theater and audio equipment as the Super Bowl season is in full swing and many companies are preparing their 2022 models. Luckily, if you’re looking to spice up romcoms with your loved one this winter, the best streaming device you can buy is on sale from a number of retailers. Google’s latest Chromecast offers support for 4K content, Dolby Atmos and Dolby Vision HDR, as well as access to all major streaming services. It also makes it easy to find something to watch, with software that brings together recommendations from different streaming services.

Normally $49.99, the Chromecast with Google TV is now on sale at Best Buy and Walmart for $39.99, which is its lowest price yet. Target also offers the same discount, but you should opt for in-store pickup if you want to get the streaming device in time for the holidays. Read our review.

Chromecast with Google TV

The Chromecast with Google TV introduces a special remote and new software that brings together recommendations from all your streaming services. It also supports Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos.

Last-minute digital gifts you can buy in the short term

A Disney bundle subscription provides access to popular shows such as The Mandalorian
Image: Disney

With a subscription to a streaming service, you can enjoy Valentine’s Day in the warmth, comfort and security of your own home. Each service offers a plethora of movies and TV shows for you and your partner to enjoy, no matter which one you subscribe to.

A Netflix subscription — available through Target, Best Buy, and Walmart — is an obvious choice with recent hits like Ozark and The Witcher, but the Disney Plus bundle is also a good option. A $14 per month subscription gives you access to Disney Plus, Hulu, and ESPN Plus, which is cheaper than paying for each subscription separately. It also allows you to watch movies from the Marvel Cinematic Universe and recent shows like Boba Fett’s book and Pim and Tommy. sport enthusiasts, meanwhile, can watch content not always available on regular ESPN with ESPN Plus.

Netflix gift card (digital)

The well-known streaming service offers individual subscriptions for $10 per month, as well as more premium tiers that allow for 4K resolution and additional users.

Disney Bundle (monthly subscription)

For $14 a month, you get access to Disney Plus, Hulu, and ESPN Plus, which is cheaper than you would otherwise pay if you bought each subscription separately.

Video games are ideal gifts for the gamers in your life, but there are thousands of digital titles that you can buy or gift right away. However, if you’re looking for a game recommendation that fits the Valentine’s Day theme, you might be better off picking it up It takes two.

In the excellent action-adventure game from Hazelight Studios, you and your loved one play as a couple on the brink of divorce, one who learns to work together and overcome differences as you struggle through various obstacles and tests. While it’s not currently on sale, you can buy the digital version for Xbox One and Series X/S from Best Buy or Amazon for $39.99, or the PC version from the same retailers (Amazon, Best Buy) for the same price. price.

It takes two

In the action adventure game, you and your boyfriend play as a married couple on the brink of divorce and learn to work together and overcome differences as they struggle with various obstacles and tests.

If you’re looking for more options – or if you’re not quite sure which games your partner or friend would like – there are plenty of other digital gifts you can give as well. These include Xbox gift cards (Amazon, Best Buy or Walmart), which start at $5, as well as gift cards for both the PlayStation Store (Amazon, Best Buy or Target) and the Nintendo eShop (Amazon or Best Buy).

Xbox gift card (digital)

With an Xbox Gift Card, you can purchase Xbox games, downloadable content, and more from the Microsoft Store on your console or PC. You can buy a card for as little as $10.

PlayStation Store Gift Card (digital)

With a PlayStation Gift Card, you can buy thousands of games, add-ons, subscriptions and more from PlayStation Store. You can buy a card for as little as $10.

Nintendo eShop Gift Card (digital)

With a Nintendo eShop Gift Card, you can purchase over 1,000 new, classic and indie games from Nintendo eShop on Nintendo Switch, Wii U and Nintendo 3DS family systems. You can buy a card for as little as $5.

Apple Music

You can use an Apple Gift Card for Apple Music and other Apple services.

If your giftee loves music, there are a number of music streaming services that offer gift cards to choose from. Spotify is a popular option (Amazon, Best Buy), but if you’re looking for an alternative given the current controversies with Joe Rogan, there are plenty of other options. For example, an Apple gift card (Best Buy, Target) can be used to access millions of podcast episodes and over 90 million songs through Apple Music ($9.99 per month). An Amazon Music Unlimited subscription, meanwhile, gives you ad-free access to over 75 million songs in SD, HD, Ultra HD — as well as spatial audio music tracks — starting at $7.99.

Apple Music Gift Card (digital)

An Apple gift card can be used to access more than 90 million songs on Apple Music, as well as the company’s various products and services.

Last but not least, if you’re not sure what to gift someone or if you just want to give them as many options as possible, a general gift card is perfect. You can give them the gift of their choice with, for example, an Amazon gift card or one from Best Buy, with which they can buy their favorite gadget or game. It’s not a particularly smart gift, but hey, it’s the thought that counts, right?

Amazon Gift Card (digital)

Amazon gift cards start at $25 — or any amount of your choosing — and can be used on almost anything, regardless of department.

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