As your relationship with your boyfriend grows, eventually you will include his parents in gift-giving occasions. Searching for the perfect gift to impress them shouldn't cause undue stress. The New York Times reports that the act of giving is important regardless of the amount spent. With careful thought and planning, you can find an appropriate and affordable gift for any occasion.
An edible gift can be both inexpensive and personal. If your boyfriend's parents have a sweet tooth, bake a batch of your mother's famous chocolate chip cookies and present them in a nicely wrapped package. If his parents prefer a healthier food option, select a variety of nuts and place them in a decorative tin. Talk to your boyfriend before baking or purchasing any edible items so you can give a food gift that will not trigger allergies or violate dietary restrictions.
If your boyfriend's parents talk about the local restaurant that recently opened, consider presenting them with a gift certificate to dine there. A gift certificate or gift card is always an acceptable gift as long as you put thought into the type of certificate. Don't view this option as just an easy way out; his parents will appreciate having an "excuse" to go out to dinner or to pick something out at their favorite store on your dime.
There is no need to limit yourself to a tangible item when coming up with an appropriate gift idea for your boyfriend's parents. A gift that involves an experience is sure to leave a lasting impression. Dr. Ryan T. Howell reports in Psychology Today that active gifts such as camping or skydiving bring the recipients and the giver closer together and provide a basis for fond memories for years to come. If you know that hot air ballooning is on your boyfriend's parents' bucket list, give them a gift certificate that will let them finally take flight.
With gift baskets, you have the opportunity to design an entire gift around the recipients' personalities and preferences. Select an underlying theme for your basket, such as a favorite sports team or an activity the parents enjoy, such as camping or swimming. The items you place in the basket should somehow relate to the theme. For example, if you select a grilling theme, fill the basket with items such as tools and spice rubs that the parents can put to use on their weekly grilling night.