A List of 40th Birthday Gift Ideas For Men and Women

Sometimes it’s hard coming up with great 40th birthday gift ideas.  It can get confusing trying to balance creativity with who the person is, which is the best way of doing it.  And there are so many websites trying to say this or that is best!

I have just turned 40, my wife is about to turn 40, and I have a number of friends who are already ‘over the hill’, whatever that means these days, or on the early slopes…So I am in quite a good position to make comment.

So lets get on with a simple list of 40th birthday ideas!

Editorial note: a great place for toys and gadgets for men has to be Firebox.com!

40th Birthday gift ideas for a man

Men like:

  • toys
  • gadgets
  • information
  • women
  • experiences.


  • Gadget based tools such as laser sighted tape measures and spirit levels; torque controllable cordless drills
  • SLR digital cameras (that’s those with the changeable lenses) since the size of the CCD is large and takes better and faster images than compacts
  • iPad
  • iPod
  • Vouchers for the iStore for iPad and iPod!
  • Experiences go down great, and you can often buy these either online or from highstreet stores. Make sure that either their partner can go with them, or a few mates (arrange it with them first of course.) Go-karting, motor car racing, paintball, adventures, or even a high-ropes course.
  • Longer term interests could be catered for with a magazine subscription
  • Think of their childhood toys, such as Evel Kenievel motorbike set; Scalextric or trains. What would be similar?
  • You could theme a number of items as well to make the 40th birthday gift ideas for men more unique, a kind of package.
  • My sister knows that I read the news on the internet, and a paper from my birthday would be boring. But she knew that I loved a certain comic – the Beano – and was able to buy an old copy from the week I was born! I was made up, seriously!
  • Don't forget that retro is cool.  Vintage motorcycle helmets are a great gift, especially if you can source one from their birth year.

40th Birthday gift ideas for dad

The coolest birthday gift idea ever?

If you are a son or daughter, then you will be around 20 years old or younger, a few a little older. That means money will be a bit tight for you. Don’t stress too much, because if you are willing to buy your old dad a 40th birthday present the chances are you know he loves you. Please, resist the urge to buy anything that reminds him of his age! No one is ‘over the hill’ now at 40, and although there is a little creaking at the scene, many men are taking up new sports just to prove that they aren’t getting past it at the age of 40. New marathon runners; new triathletes; new cyclists. If your dad is someone who has been moaning that they really don’t feel older, why not support their healthy ambitions and buy them a gadget that supports them. If there are a number of brothers and sisters join together and buy a runners heart monitor, or cyclist GPS.

Suggest that you all go out together for a mountain bike adventure on his birthday

A voucher for a month, or even a year’s worth of cinema. UK readers listen up! If you get an annual pass to a local cinema, then through the Orange Wednesday film network you can take someone with you for free! Your admission will get them in. (text FILM to 241…)

Tell him you love him! (not all 40th Birthday ideas have to cost money you know!)

You could also buy him a bottle of his favourite whisky…

One of the things you could certainly do is take HIM out for the day. Remember one of the family trips that you did when you remember him smiling, and take him on a surprise visit to the same place.

40th birthday gift ideas for husband

Husbands are strange creatures. Women are pretty sure that they understand them, and then they suddenly change their minds, even to the extent of saying that they have always been that way! Though we don’t like to admit it, we do feel as though life is slipping away a little, and that we are on a bit of a treadmill. Like you wives, we like to feel special so…

Cook us a special meal, or better yet, get glammed up and when we walk through the door at night tell us to shower, and get changed, you are both going out!

Put his clothes out for him (just like his mum used to do for him!) make sure that it is the kind of thing that he enjoys wearing and looks good in.

Neither of you should drive, take a taxi to your destination. Plan the small talk as well. Depending on your husband he may of may not like talking about his emotions. Many blokes don’t, so stay clear of the subjects. Perhaps ask him if now he is 40 if there is anything that he feels he hasn’t achieved. Don’t be surprised if it is some outlandish adventure dream.

Over the meal find out what his perfect day would be, and then suggest that before he is 41 you will sort out for his perfect adventure, or whatever it might be, to happen. Then make it your ambition to sort that out for him. He may or may not want to be involved with the process of planning, so let him.

And of course, the best birthday package for a husband…is you. And you’re completely free. Just make a fuss of him!

40th birthday gift ideas for her

The key is to value the person for who they are. Women often feel under appreciated and naturally find a role in family and society as the carers as well as career based people. That means they are often pulled in two or three different directions at once, there is not much time for them.

So give them some pampering.

  • A weekend away
  • Shopping in New York, Paris or London
  • A break from the kids and the routine
  • A pampering spa day? Why not sort out for her to go with you, or her friends.
  • If you are planning a weekend away, then clothes shopping with a purpose, for example for a trip to the theatre for a musical, comedy or the ballet could be in order. Or go and see a favourite rock band together

I’ve been giving much thought to 40th birthday gift ideas for my wife. I have been talking to her about her birthday for sometime so that I get it right. It’s a very dangerous thing to believe you know everything about a woman’s likes and dislikes! She would really like to go to a show in Manchester, and it’s something I am keen to get right for her. And as I have suggested, I will be arranging for the kids to be taken care of by the grandparents so that I can give her the attention that she deserves.

The most important thing when you are trying to find 40th birthday gifts for women is that they know that you care.  Put lots of time into thinking about why you are choosing it. Think about who they are, what they do.  Perhaps they think that you are buying for them will remind them of some happy memory or other.  Don't just go down a cheapskate route either, really put some effort into getting the best.  And when you have, make sure that the packaging is just right!  Don't forget, bows, lace and ribon all go down relaly well.  If you can't wrap it well, get the shop keeper to do it.  If you want to really do a good job, then find somewhere romantic and present the gift there.  Over a meal perhaps, or even during a moonlit walk.

Do you have any 40th birthday gift ideas for women? Do you think I have it right? I would love to hear your opinions and what you have given or received which could help someone else who is trying to come up with some 40th birthday gifts, perhaps something that has meant a lot to you, or even and experience that someone has bought for you.

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