The weather is getting cooler and the days shorter, which means fall has arrived, and we’re paving the road to Halloween with our spookiest gift guide of the year. It’s time to grab your black cat, a fistful of candy corn, and dive into our unapologetically autumnal gift guide.
Naturally, with all of the new tech that’s just rolled out, we couldn’t help but include recent picks like Google’s midrange Pixel 6A ($349) and the second-gen AirPods Pro ($239). However, we’ve also collected a host of more affordable options if you’re trying to reign in your budget, like Anker’s 30W 511 Charger ($22.99) and a behemoth Thermos ($43.50) that’s as suitable for hot chocolate as it is spiced apple cider.
We’ve even collected a number of gifts that are less tech-centric, such as a stainless steel fire pit ($264.99), a heated plushie ($38), and a macabre card game ($27.95) that can make spending time with your family — chosen or otherwise — a little more enjoyable.
Hopefully, our roundup sparks your imagination if you’re having trouble finding the perfect gift this fall, whether it be for a birthday, wedding, or another festive occasion.
Chef'n Switchit Double-Sided Spatula
Fall is a time for many things, including corn mazes, tailgating, and — most importantly — ungodly amounts of baking. Fortunately, a non-stick spatula like the double-sided Switchit can help your giftee whip up that chai masala pumpkin pie in no time, whether they've seen the latest season of The Great British Bake Off or not.
Price: $8.99 to $10.99
Miir Tumbler (12-ounce)
For a mug that's almost as unique as you are, look no further than the Miir Tumbler. The double-walled, stainless steel design keeps your favorite beverages hot, while the press-fit lid keeps things where they should be. The classic tumbler is available in a range sizes and attractive colors, too, and you can even personalize it for an additional fee.
Amazon Kindle (2022)
Few fall activites are as cozy as curling up by the fire with a few books (or a few hundred of them). Fortunately, if you're giftee is an avid bookworm with a penchant for tech, Amazon's latest base Kindle is finally worth shelling out for. The new model touts a sharp 300ppi display and 16GB of storage, in addition to a healthy six weeks of battery life. It even opts for a USB-C port over Micro USB, meaning that reader in your life will have one less cable to worry about.
Apple AirPods Pro (second-gen)
The new AirPods Pro have arrived, and with them comes a host of improvements. Not only do Apple's second-gen earbuds offer improved noise cancellation and swipe-enabled touch controls, but they come with a Find My-ready charging case that features a built-in speaker and pinpoint location tracking that makes it easier to find.
Price: $239.99 to $249.99
Google Pixel 6A
Google's Pixel 6A offers most everything you might want from a current-gen phone while eschewing wireless charging and other niceties, helping it strike a balance between performance and price. The midrange entry touts the same Tensor chipset as the more expensive models but, overall, makes the right compromises for a phone that's roughly $100 cheaper than the next best thing.
Gloom is a card game that has you competing to concoct the most ridiculous demise for one very unfortunate family. Part game and part narrative device, Gloom's macabre tone and illustrations are drawn from the works of Tim Burton and Edward Gorey, lending just the right amount of levity to an otherwise grim affair.
El Paso Designs Mexican Yoga Blanket
While not as versatile as a Swiss army knife or Raspberry Pi, there's something to be said about an all-purpose falsa blanket like that of El Paso Designs. The budget-friendly, handwoven throws make use of traditional designs and come in an array of vivid patterns, each of which can add a pop of color to any space. What's more, they come in handy in a variety of situations, whether you're a fan of downward dog or just laying out in the sun.
Anker 30W 511 Charger
If you've got a pile of charging adapters sitting in a drawer, Anker's 30W 511 Charger should be at the top of the heap. The cube-shaped adapter uses Anker's IQ charging tech to deliver the most efficient wattage to your device by intelligently detecting whatever it's plugged into. It also provides enough juice via its USB-C port to fast charge an iPhone or Android device and is sufficient enough to charge some laptops.
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate (three-month subscription)
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is one of the best deals in gaming, one that gives you access to a exclusive deals, online multiplayer, and a rotating library of over 100 AAA and indie titles you can play on Xbox, PC, or your mobile device (via streaming). It's a good time to pick it up with titles like Minecraft: Legends and Hollow Knight: Silksong crowding the fall release window since you'll be able to play them all on day one as long as you're a subscriber.
Solo Stove Ranger 2.0
The Solo Stove Ranger 2.0 is the kind of fire pit that's likely to raise few eyebrows from the neighbors. The self-contained, stainless steel cylinder is designed to provide adequate airflow to your chosen flammables while producing less smoke in the process; it's even outfitted with a removable ash pan so you can "leave no trace" like a responsible camper should you decide to take the portable stove with you into the boonies.
If you want to stop using your mouse on a naked desk, you might want to invest in a mousepad that's a bit more adult. Luckily, Nomad makes leather accessories for just about every aspect of your home office, including your desk. The company's leather mousepads are available in 13- or 16-inch sizes and can be treated with brown, black, or beige finishes. They're also remarkably tough and feature a heat-treated surface that won't interfere with optical sensors.
If you have a more efficient way of smuggling two bottles of warm mulled wine into a cemetery, we'd love to hear it. With a sturdy handle and a screw-top lid that's secure enough to prevent unwanted spills, this vacuum-insulated Thermos provides a convenient way of securely porting hot or cold beverages to your preferred picnic venue — whether you plan on leaf peeping or communing with the dead.
Price: $39.99 to $48.99
If you struggle to stay warm during the colder months, a Halloween Heatie makes for ideal snuggling companion. Each plushie comes with its own scented insert, which can be removed and heated in the microwave to provide just the right amount of warmth. With names like "Gawain the Gargoyle" and "Patches the Puppy," I dare you to not give one of these adorable minions a forever home.
Sony WH-1000XM5 headphones
Sony didn't exactly reinvent the wheel with the WH-1000XM5s, but the headphones do sport improved performance and a sleeker aesthetic when compared to their bulkier predecessor. Featuring a more balanced sound profile, improved clarity for voice calls, and best-in-class noise cancellation, the WH-1000XM5 are an excellent choice for both commuters and jet setters.
Cuisinart Electric Kettle
Cuisinart's electric kettle proves that there's more than one way to boil water. The swiveling 1.7-liter device features multiple temperature settings that are suitable for different tea varietals — white, green, oolang, etc. — in addition to a setting that keeps water warm for up to 30 minutes. Best of all, it can remember where it was in the brewing process for up to two minutes, meaning it won't turn off right away when you rest it on the kitchen counter.
Amazon Smart Thermostat
With the mercury dropping outside, keeping things comfy inside is a must. Thankfully, Amazon's Alexa-equipped thermostat lets you control your central air and heat when you're away while helping you keep cut back on your energy usage. The modern smart thermostat is also one of the cheapest you can buy and is designed to be installed without professional help, making it a great starter model.
Nintendo Switch OLED
The Nintendo Switch OLED is still the one of the best handhelds you can buy and, unlike other consoles, one that doesn't suddenly cost more for no apparent reason. The OLED edition can play all the same games and offers similar performance to the standard model but features an improved kickstand, better speakers, and a larger 7-inch OLED display that's both brighter and more vibrant than the screen on the OG Switch.
Penny Dreadfuls by Stefan Dziemianowicz
As they say, 'tis the season to be spooky. Penny Dreadfuls: Sensational Tales of Terror is a 666-page compendium of spine-tingling tales assembled by author Stefan Dziemianowicz. The hardbound volume includes two full-length novels and longer classics from the likes of Bram Stoker, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and Edgar Allen Poe, in addition to some more bite-sized works for you to sink your teeth into.
Ember Mug 2 (10-ounce)
It's about damn time your coffee mug did something nice for you. The Ember Mug 2 is a battery-powered, ceramic mug that's designed to keep contents hot for up to 90 minutes, saving you from having to resort to the microwave when your coffee inevitably gets cold. Like similar smart mugs, the standing temperature is controllable via a mobile app, and the included charging coaster helps keep the battery topped off while not in use.
Root is a game that’s best described as something like Game of Thrones meets Disney’s Robin Hood — yes, the one with the animals. The challenging board game has you leading factions of woodland creatures, each portrayed by an adorable wooden figure, as you battle for control of a dense forest. What really brings the world of Root to life, however, is the remarkably evocative artwork and whimsical illustrations. If you can manage to get a group of friends together, it won’t disappoint.
Price: $60 to $74.95
iPhone 14 Pro
The notch moved, you guys! Say what you will about the iterative design of the iPhone 14 Pro, but the Dynamic Island has certainly got people talking. Apple's latest headset turns the oft-maligned notch into a functional part of its 6.1-inch display, yet the phone also offers a more impressive camera selection and Apple's latest silicon, making this year's model an excellent choice for those looking to upgrade their smartphone.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 5
Samsung's latest wearable doesn't shake things up too much in terms of design, but the Galaxy Watch 5 brings a number of welcome improvements. It isn't quite as restrictive with which apps you can use, for instance, and includes an improved array of accessibility options. It's also more durable than its predecessor and offers better battery life, helping to once again solidify its spot as the best Android smartwatch you can buy.
Soul Spirits subscription
Finally, a drink subscription you can feel good about. With a Soul Spirits subscription, you'll recieve a monthly supply of non-alcoholic spirits for making grown-up drinks that aren't just a mixture of ice tea and lemonade. Each box is revolves around a familiar classic, whether it be a old fashioned or a gin and tonic, making Soul Spirits a great chance to try something different or just add some fun cordials to your wet bar.
Price: $49.95 to $79.95
Bear & Breakfast
Bear & Breakfast amounts exactly to what it says on the tin. The popular title has you step into the role of a woodland animal, one who is intent on following their dreams of capitalist enterprise. Bear & Breakfast is a leisurely paced management sim that will appeal to fans of Animal Crossing or Stardew Valley, with witty dialogue and a charming art style easily make it one of the season's coziest games for the Nintendo Switch and PC.
Northern Light Technologies Luxor Mini
SAD lamps are a dime a dozen, but Northern Light Technologies' Luxor Mini comes recommended from our friends over at The Strategist. Having a good SAD lamp on hand is essential for the many people who struggle with seasonal affective disorder, and the pyramid-shaped Mini is a 10,000-lux lamp that can fit on your desk or shelf during those months when it feels like sunny days are in short supply.
The Verge Blackout Logo Tee
Yes, there are plenty of T-shirts on the internet, but only the Blackout Logo Tee bears our new logo mark front and center. It's made of a comfy blend of cotton and polyester, and like all of the items currently featured in our store, the Blackout Logo Tee kicks off our first wave of redesigned Verge merch.
HP Spectre x360 14
HP's latest Spectre x360 14 is our favorite Windows laptop, thanks to its gorgeous design and excellent battery life. Equipped with a 12th Gen Intel Core i7 CPU, 16GB of RAM, and 1TB of storage, the 14-inch machine is an awesome workday laptop that can double as a tablet with its 2-in-1 design. There are certainly more budget-friendly options out there, but the Spectre x360 14 is a solid choice if you're looking for an ultrabook that can pull its weight.
Price: $1,599.99 to $1,749.99