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30th Birthday Gift Ideas

Updated on January 13, 2015
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I love to shop and have been helping people find gifts for several years, whether it is a birthday gift, Christmas gift, or any other type!!


Great 30th Birthday Gift Ideas

This page was started several years ago around the time I was turning 30, but I'm a bit further into my thirties now. I can say from experience that turning 30 can be a little traumatic because somehow you aren't quite as young and hip as you were the day before when you were still 29.

Anyway, I've shopped for 30th birthday gifts for friends and family and have refined the gift ideas on this page over several years. Hopefully you'll find an idea that works for you. If all else fails, you can get them a $30 gift certificate to a store or restaurant or get them a nice wallet with 30 $1 bills in it. I think that's thoughtful since it's $1 per year of their life.

Cartoons from the Decade They were Born In

Saturday Morning Cartoons: 1980s, Vol. 1
Saturday Morning Cartoons: 1980s, Vol. 1

This is a DVD with some Saturday morning / weekday afternoon cartoons that they might remember from the 80s. Have you seen any good Saturday Morning Cartoons these days? I haven't and I feel sorry for kids who grow up today to not have as many great cartoons.

The DVD pictured here has a few different 80s cartoons on it as you can see from the pictures. To go along with this gift, you could also get them their favorite cartoon from when they were growing up if it's on DVD or Blu-ray.


What popular thing from the 90s would make a good gift now?

See results

Childhood Nostalgia

When you're older, like me, you might look back fondly about things from your childhood such as fads that were popular then as well as movies and books and toys, etc. I remember in the 80s when Rubik's cubes were popular, Cabbage Patch dolls were insanely popular, and there were actually good cartoons on Saturday mornings. In the 90s, perhaps those born in the 80s got into grunge music as a teenager and maybe they got into pogs, Pokemon, or beanie babies as well? I still have a big box full of beanie babies.

I think the 80s and 90s had better movies than today's movies, but maybe that's because I'm nostalgic about them. Those were the good ol' days and I think people might like a gift that reminds them of when they were growing up.


If you don't know what else to get someone on their 30th birthday, they would probably look good in a t-shirt that says 30 years old!

In addition to this shirt, you could get them other t-shirts to go along with it related to things they like. Maybe you could find some retro shirts regarding things they liked when growing up. For instance, if they were a big Nintendo fan maybe they would like a Mario t-shirt or something along those lines.

Candy they remember from their childhood

Candy is a good gift when you don't know what else to get someone as there is no medical reason for them not to eat it!

Did the birthday person perhaps have some favorite candy when they were growing up that they would enjoy getting as a 30th birthday gift? I bet they probably remember Gummi Bears which are one of my favorites!

They might also remember candy like Nerds, Now & Laters, Jolly Ranchers, and of course Pop Rocks (these were controversial and I wasn't allowed to eat them!)

You could also get them whatever their favorite candy bar was growing up which is probably still available now. If you wanted to go with the 30th birthday theme you could get them 30 candy bars, but perhaps that's a bit too much candy?

Coins From the Year They Were Born

1985 S US Mint Proof Set Original Government Packaging
1985 S US Mint Proof Set Original Government Packaging

Coins from the year you are born make a cool thirtieth birthday gift.

The coins pictured here are United States coins and would be for those who were born in 1985 and are turning thirty in 2015!

You get a penny, nickel, dime, quarter, and half dollar in Original US government packaging.


Dr Seuss Book

Dr. Seuss books aren't just for kids.

There's a Dr Seuss Book for old people called You're Only Old Once!: A Book For Obsolete Children.

That book will give 30 year olds a taste of what's in store when they get older.

Books Make Great Gifts!

What kind of book would you get someone for their 30th birthday? You could get them a book by one of their favorite authors or a book you love and think they'd enjoy. To go along with that, you might want to get them a book that focuses on turning 30 or being old. Also there's a book you can customize mentioned below with reprinted pages from the NY Times newspaper from the day they were born.

Some cool gifts you could get them to go along with books would be a bookmark they would find interesting or a book light. Seriously, book lights are pretty useful things to have if you enjoy reading books!

If someone has an electronic book reader and doesn't read a lot of paper books then maybe just get them a book like the ones mentioned on this page plus a gift certificate so they can buy more electronic books.

Best Book Gift for 30th Birthdays

What is the best book related gift you can get someone for their 30th birthday?

See results
30 Things to Do When You Turn 30
30 Things to Do When You Turn 30

This book sounds really interesting since it features a collection of essays for those turning thirty, and you may recognize the names of some of the people who wrote them such as singer KT Tunstall (one of my favorite singers!), NBA star Chris Weber, Timothy Ferriss (the guy who wrote The 4-Hour Workweek , an interesting book that makes you think differently about work), and others.


Newspaper from the Day They were Born - Get them a newspaper from their birth date

I love the idea of getting someone a newspaper from the day they were born as a birthday gift. Though newspapers in print are becoming rarer these days, someone turning 30 should remember what one is!

New York Times Your Special Day Book is a reproduced New York Times newspaper in a hardbound book with up to 80 reprinted pages from whatever date you choose, and it will also include additional pages featuring some historic events that changed the world. What I really like is that it's hard bound with an attractive cover that you can personalize for free with the birthday person's name and date.

You probably know this but before the internet became so popular, newspapers were a big deal! Newspapers were especially a big deal in my family as my dad and grandpa were in the newspaper business. I even did a brief stint as a newspaper carrier. Anyway, my parents were always reading the newspaper in the morning, and I liked the comics and reading about entertainment. Now I read news online (like everyone else), but that does not stop me from feeling nostalgic about newspapers.

Logan's Run Movie!

Logan's Run is a fun gift to get people for 30th birthdays, if they don't mind a cheesy 70s scifi movie.

In this movie, the status quo is that you don't get to live past 30, so it's possible the movie could be a little too scary for a 30 year old.

Really, it's just a funny gift you could get to go with something else, like a movie from their birth year or a movie they liked from their childhood!

Movie Gift Ideas

Movies make a good gift idea and you might want to get them more than one movie, such as a movie from the year they were born and a movie they enjoyed when they were growing up.

For people born in 1985 and turning 30 in 2015, some popular movies that came out that year were Back to the Future, which would be my pick as you'll see below, as well as some other movies you might like better: The Goonies, The Breakfast Club, Rambo First Blood: Part II, Rocky IV . Seems like a big year in movies to me!

A movie they might remember from when they were growing up is Titanic which I mention below. I also like the thought of getting someone a Disney movie they remember from when they were growing up like Lion King, Little Mermaid (my favorite) or Beauty and the Beast.

Back to the Future, a 1985 Movie

Back to the Future: 25th Anniversary Trilogy [Blu-ray]
Back to the Future: 25th Anniversary Trilogy [Blu-ray]

Back to the Future is my pick for a movie that came out in 1985. It was the highest grossing movie of 1985 and for good reason! It was some light scifi that everyone could get into.

You can get the Back to the Future Trilogy on Blu-ray which includes all 3 movies, but only the first one came out in '85.


Best movie gift poll

What is the best movie gift for a 30 year old?

See results

Nostalgic Movie: Titanic

Titanic (Four-Disc Combo: Blu-ray 3D / Blu-ray / Digital Copy)
Titanic (Four-Disc Combo: Blu-ray 3D / Blu-ray / Digital Copy)

Someone born in '85 would have been turning 12 the year Titanic came out, and it's rated PG-13 so they might not have been too young for it if they saw it with parents.

Some people went to see this movie multiple times and it is one of the highest grossing movies ever. I saw it for the first time in the theater with my parents and it was so packed the only place we could find seats was in the front row causing my neck to be really sore afterward. It was a really great movie though!


Music Gift for those born in '85

Music Gift Ideas

I like the idea of getting someone some music from the year they were born as a gift, then also getting them some albums with music they remember from when they were growing up to go along with it.

A CD with 90s music could also be good for someone born in the mid '80s.

Since they likely won't know all the songs from the year they were born, they could learn of some good new music and be proud that it's from the year they were born. There's usually a song or two from each year that EVERYONE knows about because the song is just that famous.

Music Gift Poll

What would make the best music gift for a 30 year old?

See results

What are your 30th Birthday Gift Ideas?

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    • DeeDeeGee LM profile image

      DeeDeeGee LM 4 years ago

      I wish I had seen this before my daughter turned 30 last December.

      I did get her some great gifts but something 30 themed, like the mug and cards would have been a cool addition.

    • mommyplus3kids profile image

      mommyplus3kids 4 years ago

      Where was this lens when I turned 30! LOL! Awesome gifts

    • Boyd Carter profile image

      Boyd Carter 4 years ago

      I'm so far past 30 that I think I will go to your "Over the Hill" page for ideas. :)

    • mariacarbonara profile image

      mariacarbonara 4 years ago

      I want the 80s cartoons for myself!

    • k4shmir profile image

      k4shmir 4 years ago

      so much creative idea and gift suggested. Thanks

    • profile image

      birthdaywishesscom 4 years ago

      GREAT Article! 30 is near for me ;)

    • clevergirlname profile image

      clevergirlname 4 years ago

      Great and fun! Just turned 30 myself!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I THINK ON my 30th B'day on 17 june, I would like to have A WORLD TOUR.... REALLY EXPENSive idea, but I love travelling.

    • profile image

      aleesya_aqilah 4 years ago

      i already 30 this year.i wish i can backdate

    • profile image

      Nikki4321 4 years ago

      My 30th Birthday Gift Idea is Flowers! Flowers! Flowers! See:

    • RogerBonger profile image

      RogerBonger 4 years ago

      These are good ideas, I wish I were turning 30 again

    • profile image

      Croyds1011 4 years ago

      love the ideas,will use some while celebrating my hubbies 30th bday in august

    • Therestlesssoul profile image

      Therestlesssoul 4 years ago

      Nicely crafted lens

    • profile image

      MythYes 4 years ago

      Hm... who has 30th birthday soon? :)

    • PremiumCoffeeLo profile image

      PremiumCoffeeLo 4 years ago

      Some great ideas here. I especially love the coffee mugs

    • annayjo profile image

      annayjo 5 years ago

      I'm turning 29 next month and although not 30 yet, pretty close. =) I can't agree more on the dvds! I still watch little mermaid and the beauty and the beast and still get butterflies in my tummy watching them. It's what I grew up with and I can't get it out of my system. It brings back all the great memories and I feel like a kid inside with no worldly problems.

    • profile image

      MissMalaprop 5 years ago

      I totally agree about Jurassic Park! I turn 30 this year, and went to the theater last weekend with my best friend to see the re-release in IMAX 3D. The entire movie theater was filled with people our age!!

    • profile image

      denman4 5 years ago

      I'm not sure why, but my 30th birthday was probably the most difficult to deal with. Thanks for the wonderful ideas for helping others better cope with and indeed celebrate this "fact of life."

    • profile image

      Aunt-Mollie 5 years ago

      Great ideas for this milestone birthday.

    • RitaAnne profile image

      RitaAnne 5 years ago

      To be 30 is awesome!... And I like that Birthday Mug that says I'm not 30... I'm $29.95 plus tax... ;)

    • profile image

      Krisenvorsorge 5 years ago

      More than 1100 likes for this lens!!! I'm not the only one who like it. :-)

    • salsa-dancing profile image

      Salsa Dancing 5 years ago

      Good ideas, I'll be hitting 30 soon!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I'm 30 next year, I wonder if anyone will get me any of these great gift ideas ?

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Great lens!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Great lens!

    • chiptuning profile image

      chiptuning 5 years ago

      We will make a big party with all our friends...

    • profile image

      chickie99 5 years ago

      great lens! i remember when i turned 30...loved it!!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Nice Ideas !

    • profile image

      john9229 5 years ago

      I changed new car when 30th.

    • WordChipper profile image

      WordChipper 5 years ago

      Great lens - 30 was a tramatic birthday... I like the ideas that involve time with special people: birthday surprise picnic, birthday breakfast in bed,

    • profile image

      marceladevivo 5 years ago

      I loved receiving a new camera for my 30th.

    • profile image

      birthdaywishesquotes 5 years ago

      How about a camera accessory?

    • TCB dan profile image

      TCB dan 5 years ago

      As a 34 year old, I really enjoyed this lens!!

    • asilonline lm profile image

      asilonline lm 5 years ago

      Wow. Wonderful lens

    • profile image

      PinoyBroker 5 years ago

      Great Lens on 30th birthday gift suggestions..

    • profile image

      olmpal 5 years ago

      Great gift ideas for those celebrating their 30th birthday! I especially love The ultimate birthday book with NY Times front pages!

    • profile image

      Traveller579 5 years ago

      Wonderful lenses, Great idea really some informatics lenses.

    • poorwendy lm profile image

      poorwendy lm 5 years ago

      Wow. Great lens. I didn't think that you can have your own personalized M&M.

    • lshields lm profile image

      lshields lm 5 years ago

      Great leans, with wonderful ideas.

    • Yvette Munro profile image

      Yvette Munro 5 years ago

      Love this lens. There are some really awesome ideas, thank you.

    • MifuneGoon profile image

      MifuneGoon 5 years ago

      Wow! I love eighties flashbacks! There are some terrific niche ideas here. People who turn thirty need all the comfort and support they can get. :-)

    • WriterJanis2 profile image

      WriterJanis2 5 years ago

      You have some really good suggestions here.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Cool gift ideas.

    • Totus Mundus profile image

      Totus Mundus 5 years ago

      Great gifts for those who are 30 and beyond.

    • profile image

      jimmyboy88 5 years ago

      i am passed 30, maybe you should have 1 that is 40?

    • kiratalley profile image

      kiratalley 5 years ago

      Now this is something that I should definitely look into as there are a few up and coming 30 year olds in my life!

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Great gifts to choose from.

    • radhanathswamifan profile image

      radhanathswamifan 5 years ago

      Great ideas

    • Ahdilarum profile image

      Ahdilarum 5 years ago

      Nice to present/gift a person on 30th birthday..

    • SecondSally profile image

      SecondSally 5 years ago

      I really liked the birthday book idea!

    • profile image

      leadbolt 5 years ago

      Perfect ideas for a party I need to plan soon.

    • Essentially Ind profile image

      Essentially Ind 5 years ago

      Great tips, These are perfect for the those around 30.............Liked it. :)

    • profile image

      Cardmonkey 5 years ago

      Just got my brother a driving day experience for his 30th. He's not been yet but he did seem pretty excited by the gift!

    • profile image

      Hannah Writes 5 years ago

      My late aunt gave me a mug for my 30th birthday (that was MANY years ago) that I use all the time for my morning coffee. Great ideas!

    • Louidam1 LM profile image

      Louidam1 LM 5 years ago

      I'll be 30 next year!!! I can't wait! NOT!! LOL! Great lens!

    • iankc profile image

      Ian Casey 5 years ago from Florida

      Great lens! And I turned 30 about 3 weeks ago!

    • tonybonura profile image

      Tony Bonura 5 years ago from Tickfaw, Louisiana

      Ah to be 30 again. I really don't remember much about my 30th birthday. We barbecued a goat and passed around about a gallon of mushroom punch and my wife was out talking to a cow thinking it was man walking a dog. Oh yeah, my brother gave me Jimmy Buffet album on vinyl of course.


    • psiloveyou1 profile image

      psiloveyou1 5 years ago

      For my 30th birthday, I got lots of gag gifts! Sending an Angel Blessing your way :)

    • nathangibbs lm profile image

      nathangibbs lm 5 years ago

      Birthday Newspaper is my favorite. Superb lens!

    • Madonaa profile image

      Madonaa 5 years ago

      These are really nice gift but you can make it more good by adding some mobile phones in it!

    • Elaine Chen profile image

      Elaine Chen 5 years ago

      do you consider to build a lens to share 40th birthday gift ideas? I am interest to know :-)

    • BillyPilgrim LM profile image

      BillyPilgrim LM 5 years ago

      30 this year...oh no! :( x

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I just turn 30 so it was nice

    • profile image

      MimayManalo 5 years ago

      bang-up lens! you did great on this.. i used to surprise the celebrant, very common idea .. but the deal was about on your surprise gift, on what was it.. wehhhhhh LOLZ

    • profile image

      Dianeyp LM 5 years ago

      my son turned 30 earlier this year (Jan 19th) and so did his girlfriend 2 weeks later. The families got together and paid for a getaway trip and of course the mugs and t-shirts too! Some great ideas here. 1982 was a great year!

    • profile image

      Kaizer 5 years ago

      Great ideas.

    • Kumar P S profile image

      Kumar P S 5 years ago

      Nice lens ! Thanks for sharing.

    • maryLuu profile image

      maryLuu 5 years ago

      An exotic vacation will be nice! I've just turned 30! Anyone want an exotic trip?

    • nasirislam2010b13 profile image

      nasirislam2010b13 5 years ago

      clothes are cute!

    • profile image

      naomiyoung 5 years ago

      I liked the baby clothes. It is so cute!

    • Max Globe profile image

      Max Globe 5 years ago

      Simply, but amazing, thank you

    • montanatravel52 profile image

      montanatravel52 5 years ago

      Your wonderful and exciting lens made me wish I was turning 30 yo again, how fun, thanks! ps, I loved that you included Dr. Seuss, just because...:)

    • Alana-r profile image

      Alana-r 5 years ago

      Brilliant Lens, some amazing ideas in here, i will be checking back here again, thanks so much!

    • singlemaltdram profile image

      singlemaltdram 5 years ago

      Love the trivia and Rubiks cube idea. What about a bottle of Glenmorangie?

    • profile image

      Tahamtan 5 years ago

      Interesting stuff. :) My favorite 30th birthday gift is a board game you can play with others.

    • profile image

      Ryan81 5 years ago

      Some great suggestions here, would have loved to get some of these gifts on my 30th!!:D

    • Rossouw Coetzee profile image

      Anonymous 5 years ago from Stellenbosch, South Africa

      Nice ideas thank you for the lens!

    • MohkaUK LM profile image

      MohkaUK LM 5 years ago

      I just had my 30th!

    • MrsKatieE LM profile image

      MrsKatieE LM 5 years ago

      Since my friends and I are all swiftly approaching 30, and will be running smack into it within the next year, I think I will be using this lens. Great gift ideas!

    • Ashly Rain profile image

      Ashly Rain 5 years ago

      There are some great ideas here.

    • Melissa Miotke profile image

      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      Great ideas! I enjoyed this lens:)

    • Find-Online profile image

      Find-Online 5 years ago

      Nice assortment of gift ideas for a somebody newly turned 30.

    • IntoMars LM profile image

      IntoMars LM 5 years ago

      This lense is absolutely fantastic! You did a really great job :)

    • barberrela profile image

      barberrela 5 years ago

      I like funny gift ideas. I like your 'Made in 1982' T Shirt. Great lens and lots to choose from.

    • raelcalu profile image

      raelcalu 5 years ago

      Thanks for this ideas, nice reading your lens...i was looking up the squidoo community for some ideas with regards to my upcoming birthday.

    • raelcalu profile image

      raelcalu 5 years ago

      Thanks for the ideas, really enjoyed this one..loved the birthday is coming up (tomorrow) and I'm going 30's (don't want to reveal my true age).

    • madnessmerritt profile image

      madnessmerritt 5 years ago

      Good ideas made me smile, happy smile day and 30 isn't that bad I'm almost 32 and life is sweet, I don't feel changed at all just wiser.

    • profile image

      dellgirl 5 years ago

      This is such a great lens, you have many good ideas for 30th birthday gifts. Thanks for sharing this. ~~Blessed by a SquidAngel~~

    • steph-naylor profile image

      steph-naylor 5 years ago

      Great Lens! Thanks for sharing!

    • eccles1 profile image

      eccles1 5 years ago

      you have some great ideas!

      thank you

    • buffygirl lm profile image

      buffygirl lm 5 years ago

      Great job! You put a lot of work into this. It's a one-stop shop! :)

    • profile image

      Juliety 5 years ago

      Very intresting ideas of gifts for someone who will be 30 soon ;)

    • Lareene profile image

      Lareene 5 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      What a wonderful lens, I learned about historical newspapers, flickback and remember when these are sweet nuggets thanks.

    • leibwood profile image

      leibwood 5 years ago

      Lots of great birthday gift ideas here. Nice lens.

    • craig57 lm profile image

      craig57 lm 5 years ago

      Great information, thanks!

    • Barbara2659 profile image

      Barbara2659 5 years ago

      Makes me wish I were 30 again! Wow! Love the arrow!

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 5 years ago from Arkansas USA

      Great gift ideas! I especially like the idea of magazines from the birth year. Wow, that would really make me feel old!

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 5 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      Congratulations for being #1 in Celebrations and Holidays

    • steph-naylor profile image

      steph-naylor 5 years ago

      Probably one of my favourite Lensâs

    • ChenB profile image

      ChenB 5 years ago

      Great lens! Turning 30 can be a stressful time. A nice gift is a great way to help ease this stress. Thanks for this great lens.