It's holiday shopping crunch time: 14 stress-free gifts you can get today

It’s holiday shopping crunch time: 14 stress-free gifts you can get today

Holiday shopping was stressful enough before the pandemic, but this year’s expected supply chain shortages will only make matters worse for procrastinating shoppers.

In addition to helping you stay cozy at home as the weather gets colder, a TV and movie streaming service like Netflix, Hulu or Disney Plus can be an easy last-minute gift that side-steps supply chain shortages, arriving by email exactly when you need it to. Whether you buy a gift card in-store or online, many of the most in-demand services have a dedicated section for redeeming digital gift card codes so that your loved one can activate their subscription when they’re ready to sink into the couch and take in some excellent original programming or revisit their favorite holiday movie.

Netflix? Disney Plus? There are dozens of streaming services that make quick and easy gifts.

Before you go buy a streaming gift card, there are a few things to think ahead about. Your giftee will need a streaming device or smart TV to enjoy the service. (If they don’t have one, congratulations! You’ve stumbled into another gift idea. CNET can help you navigate affordable, quality streaming devices and smart TVs.) In addition, once the gift card or gift subscription runs out, naturally, access to the service does too. If they want to keep using the service, they need to add a credit card for payments.

Here’s a list of some of the best streaming service gift subscription you can give to family and friends this year, from popular choices to some more niche products for people with particular viewing sensibilities:

Best original shows

Streaming veteran Netflix — like Hulu — offers gift cards online or in-store through retailers like Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, Target and Kroger. Netflix offers three subscription tiers — Basic ($9 per month), Standard ($14 per month) and Premium ($18 per month).

Netflix is packed with movies, shows, documentaries and original content. With a subscription, you can also check out mobile games on the Netflix app for no extra charge.

Best for TV show fans who’ve cut the cable cord

You can purchase physical or digital Hulu gift cards through retailers like Target, Walmart, Best Buy, Amazon, Walgreens, Kroger and Paypal. Hulu has a few different subscription tiers to choose from like basic Hulu ($7 per month) and ad-free basic Hulu ($13 per month). You can also subscribe to Hulu Plus Live TV ($65 per month) or ad-free Hulu Plus Live TV ($71 per month).

Hulu houses a huge catalog of movies, shows, documentaries and original content.


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