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15 Manly Father’s Day Gift Ideas for Every Type of Dad

As I approach my third Father’s Day as a dad, it still feels weird to be among the celebrated on the third Sunday of June. But as I dutifully attempt to evenly share parental duties with Lauren — changing poopy diapers, dispensing bottles, and chasing our almost-three-year-old around Target as she gleefully attempts to dismantle product displays, I appreciate the sentiment.

On that day I would, of course, be overjoyed and perfectly content to simply receive an extra hour of sleep and 20 minutes of alone time with the woman I married. Seeing as our kids probably won’t allow either, however,  I may — like lots of dads — have to settle for a gift.

That’s a tricky proposition, as guys are notoriously hard to shop for. We frown upon gifty trinkets and we tend to buy everything else we need or want whenever that need or want arises.

So here are 15 Father’s Day gift ideas for every type of dad — from the devoted to the deadbeat — to get your creative gifting gears grinding.

15 Father’s Day Gift Ideas

For the drinking dad, fancy maraschino cherries

Admittedly, I had to downgrade my brand of bourbon when diapers and formula began eating into the family budget. I put the good stuff on the rocks, but a dash of vermouth, bitters, and a quality cherry can turn run-of-the-mill whisky into a palatable manhattan any — or every — night of the week.

Father's day gift idea: fancy maraschino cherries for better manhattans.

Is your dad more of a wine guy? No problem. You can upgrade his equipment with the ultimate corkscrew.

Father's day gift idea: rabbit corkscrew.
For the outdoorsman dad and/or handy dad, a new Leatherman multi-tool.

I actually received one of these from my father-in-law last Christmas and it has turned out to be incredibly useful for pulling out the kids’ splinters, unscrewing the battery covers on toys, and, of course, opening beer bottles. I appreciate that he sprung for a model you can open with one hand so I can do all of the above without putting down the baby.

Father's day gift idea: Leatherman multi-tool.

For the grill master dad, new professional grill tools.

This is one that’s on my own wish-list, and the grilling season is just beginning! Give the dad in your life what he really wants — a reason to hang out in solitude all day with pounds of meat.

Father's day gift idea: Professional grilling tools.

For the handyman, a cordless drill.

Hands down, my drill is the most used piece of equipment in my toolbox, and it’s not just for major construction. Using it as a powered screwdriver has saved countless hours assembling toys and IKEA furniture.

Father's day gift idea: Cordless drill

For the tech geek dad, a solar iPhone Charger.

Actually, I wish I had one of these yesterday when we lost power just as my phone died. It happens! There’s also a version that can charge Android phones as well as AA and AAA batteries.

Father's day gift idea: Solar iphone charger.

For the lawn game enthusiast, Blongo.

I had never seen this before, a game that combines elements of bocce, horseshoe and croquet. Perfect for a sunny afternoon with the kids or other adults.

Father's day gift idea: Blongo a fun new lawn game.

For the reading dad, an Amazon Kindle.

For the longest time I was admittedly against Kindles. I love books — the look, the feel, and the way pretentiously displaying classic novels impresses guests. Then I got a Kindle as a gift, and I’m sold on being able to buy new books from bed. I won’t buy any more paper books to read, only to impress people.

Father's day gift idea: Amazon Kindle

For the tidy dad, the Sham-Wow! 

If you’ve ever been one to meticulously detail your car (guilty here), the Sham-Wow! is more than an as-seen-on-TV joke gift. For everybody else, it’s also a pretty funny as-seen-on-TV joke gift.

Father's day gift idea: Sham-Wow!

For the Costanza dad, the slim, front-pocket Rogue Wallet.

This one’s another from my personal wish list and — even better — it’s made here in my home state of Maine.

Father's day gift idea: Rogue Wallet - front pocket wallet.

For the clutter-despising technophile, this ultimate universal remote.

Finding the perfect universal remote can be extremely satisfying. Lauren and I used a hokey $5 American Flag remote from Radio Shack for years until, sadly, our new cable box grew too complicated for its 90’s technology. Although more expensive, this beast will likely keep up with your every-expanding entertainment center for years to come.

Father's day gift idea: Ultimate universal remote.

For the outdoors badass, a hyperlite water-resistent stuffable backpack.

This will carry everything he may need without adding an ounce of unnecessary weight. Do note that I’m pretty sure this is NOT an acceptable child carrier.

Father's day gift idea: ultra lightweight stuffable backpack.

For the secret geek, these folding RayBan sunglasses look cool, but are actually nerdy because they fold down to near pocket-size.

Father's day gift idea: Collapsable RayBan sunglasses.

For the cycling dad, this unique Gas-Less cycling jersey will announce his eco-pride. 

Alternately, if you want your dad to be safe on the streets but don’t want to see him in a skin-tight bike jersey, this reflective bike vest fits the bill.

Father's day gift idea: Gas-less cycling jersey.


The ultimate gag gift – Bic “For Her” ballpoint pens. 

Finally, if your dad deserves the Father’s Day equivalent of a lump of coal — maybe he stopped paying child support or is sitting in a jail somewhere — piss him off with these pastel-colored pens designed with a thinner grip to fit a lady’s hand! (Be sure to read the customer reviews– they’re priceless, just like a good dad)!

Father's day joke gift idea: Ladies pens from Bic.



Published or updated on June 3, 2013

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About David Weliver

David Weliver is the founding editor of Money Under 30. He's a cited authority on personal finance and the unique money issues we face during our first two decades as adults. He lives in Maine with his wife and two children.


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  1. Chantel says:

    I have to thank you for helping me figure out what I give my boyfriend for Father’s Day! :-) The multi tool is perfect! I just ordered one :-)

  2. Drew says:

    For the dad who has everything he wants, or at least that I can reasonably afford (he’s on his own for the Porsche), like my dad, I have found that “things” are not what they want. They want shared experiences with their kids. Whether its something as simple as you buying and cooking a meal for him or a family cruise. The cost is not what’s important; rather, it’s the effort and the chance to spend time with his kids that matters.

    My favorite thing to do is to turn the tables on the paternal dynamic, and do something for him that he as the father is usually stuck doing. For example, take him out to dinner at a nice restaurant and you( and your siblings, if you’re lucky) pick up the bill. After 20+ years of picking up the bill for you & the rest of the family, it is nice to get a free meal back. We as men covet the ability to provide, and one of the best moments is realizing that you raised your children to be self sufficient.

    Whatever it is, a fishing trip, a round of golf, or whatever, the important thing is that you show your dad that he raised you right and that you are grateful for all of the life lesson he bestowed upon you. Especially the tough lessons, like that time he made you do all the chores for a month after you threw a baseball through the window of his brand new Mercedes when you were 12. Still sorry a bough that one, Dad!

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