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What Magazine Subscriptions Are Best for Gifts and Waiting Rooms?

Updated on February 23, 2017
Glenn Stok profile image

Glenn Stok is an award-winning author who shares his ideas and inspiration to help others make life happier, healthier, and more enjoyable.

Looking for the right magazine for a gift subscription or for a doctor's waiting room? I'll explain how to select the proper magazine for each type of doctor's office so patients can relax while they are waiting. I'll also give you ideas for using magazines as gifts.

Magazines in a doctor's office should be subjects that patients will appreciate.
Magazines in a doctor's office should be subjects that patients will appreciate.

Doctors would make a better impression on their patients if they showed some concern for how their patients feel while waiting.

Magazines in a doctor's waiting room provide people with something to do while waiting. They may just browse, or they may find interesting subjects to read. Whatever it is, it's a way to keep people relaxed.

Magazines are great for gifts as well as reading material in doctor's waiting rooms. I've experienced much too often that my doctor, or their staff, never put any thought into the selection of reading material for their patients.

A doctor's patients come from all backgrounds, and they have many different hobbies and interests. These things should be considered when selecting the right set of magazines for a waiting room, no matter if it's a doctor's office or any other type of business.

If you're a doctor or office manager who is responsible for the task of waiting room solutions, it's important to know what's popular so that you can select the right publications for your office. The benefits apply to the success of your business in indirect ways by keeping visitors and patients comfortable. The following ideas should help.

Where to Look for Magazine Subscriptions

Amazon is a great site for searching for magazines. If you want to know names of magazines for a doctor's office or for a gift for someone, you can browse Amazon just to see what exists.

They sell magazine subscriptions too, so you can easily place your order when you find what you want. You can even specify an alternate shipping address for gift subscriptions.

If you're a doctor looking to place something useful in your waiting room, no matter what the interests are of your patients there is a magazine just for that interest.

Amazon is also a great place to go to find little-known magazines on various topics, or to compare prices of well-known magazines. I found that they have the best deals as well. You may want to do your entire magazine subscribing this way.

There are so many choices that you should have no problem finding the right magazine.

Popular Magazines for a Doctor's Office or Business Waiting Room

Magazines make great gift ideas too!

Magazines in a doctor's waiting room provide people with something to do while waiting.
Magazines in a doctor's waiting room provide people with something to do while waiting. | Source

The types of magazines in a doctor's waiting room will vary depending on the type of office it is. Some specialists will attract certain patients and it's important to consider this when deciding what magazines to provide for their enjoyment while waiting.

For example, Gynecologists will be better off with woman's magazines. Orthopedists may want to place sports magazines in their waiting room. I find it amazing how often I see a total mismatch while I'm looking for something to read in a specialist's office.

Something that will pacify patients while they wait is the best choice.

Doctors who focus on younger patients can still use some thoughtful consideration in their magazine selection. Children will obviously require magazines that relate to their age level. I remember Boy's Life when I was a kid. That's still around.

The following list may help give you some ideas so you can focus on the proper categories for waiting rooms or for gift subscriptions.

I found Amazon to be a goldmine for magazines, and with some of the best deals too. Many also have an auto-renewal option so you don't need to keep track of when a subscription is expiring. This is an easy way for doctors to keep their waiting room magazines up to date for their patient's enjoyment.

Magazines About People and Daily Life


Popular magazines I often see in doctor's waiting rooms are Entertainment Weekly, People Magazine and Vogue.

These general interest magazines provide entertainment for a wide audience. You might also consider Time Magazine, Better Homes and Gardens or Good Housekeeping.

If you're looking for a magazine to purchase as a gift subscription, and you don't know what to get, most any general interest magazine will be just fine.


Magazines About Science and Business

People who are interested in science would find Discover, Popular Science or Popular Mechanics to be a fulfilling experience. These magazines also include a lot of interesting subjects that the general public would find a delight to passively read.

People who are business savvy may like a subscription to Business Week or Kiplinger Magazine.

For current affairs, US News or Newsweek will be a welcome addition for those who like to stay abreast of the news.

Health Related Magazines

Life Extension Magazine
Life Extension Magazine

Patients who visit a doctor's office may very well be interested in health related subjects. Therefore preferred magazines to read might be Men’s Health or Women's Health.

There are even magazines related to improving living conditions. Vegetarian Times is a great choice for healthy-minded people.

I personally recommend "Life Extension Magazine" since I usually find helpful articles in it, and I'm always learning something.


Magazines About Home and Garden, Travel, and Pets

In addition, there are magazines available on gardening, hobbies, sports, shopping, drawing, knitting, quilting and other crafts, watercolor, eating well, spirituality, music, real estate, travel, and history.

There are also specialty magazines dedicated to lovers of dogs, cats, birds, motorcycles, bicycles and cars.

A Magazine for Pediatric Doctor Offices

National Geographic Little Kids
National Geographic Little Kids

For a doctor's office where patients include young kids, National Geographic has a special version called Little Kids.

And I remember when I was a child I loved reading Boy's Life. That's still around too.


List of Magazines by Category

There are hundreds, if not thousands, of magazines on the market. Every enterprise has its own specific magazine related to its field.

In an effort to provide you with a meaningful list to give you an idea of what's available, I've chosen the most common fields of interest and listed the most well-known magazines in those categories.

Entertainment Weekly
People Magazine
Better Homes and Gardens
Good Housekeeping
Popular Science
Aviation Week
MIT Technology Review
Tech to go
PC Magazine
Fast Company
Business Week
Men’s Health
Women's Health
Life Extension
Vegetarian Times
Money Magazine
Bloomberg BusinessWeek
Bank Systems & Technology
News and Current Events...
US News
The Economist
Time Magazine
Kiplinger Magazine
For Children...
Boy's Life
Girl's Life
Girls' World
National Geographic Kids
Sports Illustrated Kids
High Five™ Magazine
Elderly Magazines...
Senior Living
Senior Leisure
The Savvy Senior
Senior Times
Senior Connections

Recycling Magazines

When visiting a doctor, donate your old magazines for the waiting room. Or give individual issues to friends.

I don't like to throw my old magazines out with the garbage, so I bring my old magazines to my doctor when I visit for a checkup, especially for those who have a lack of reading material in their office. I assume their other patients notice the lack of reading material also. For privacy I tear off the corner where my address is printed on the cover.

Donating magazines serves me well. I get to have something to browse through, even though they were my own magazines. I might have overlooked an interesting article. With time to spare while waiting, what better time is there to discover something else to read that I may have missed.

You can even save the magazines you already had read to give to friends if there's an article that you think they may be interested in reading. It's just another way of avoiding filling the landfills.

© 2009 Glenn Stok


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    • MelChi profile image

      Melanie Chisnall 4 years ago from Cape Town, South Africa

      For the ridiculous prices they charge and the time they make you wait every time for appointments, I would think that doctors would be able to afford brand new magazines each month. I don't get it. It's annoying waiting and finding old magazines in the waiting rooms. Great article though, I enjoyed your selection of reading gossip magazines while waiting. :)

    • Glenn Stok profile image

      Glenn Stok 4 years ago from Long Island, NY

      MelChi - It surprises me, too, that doctors don't care enough to provide good and new magazines for their patients to read while waiting. Thanks for your comment.

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