Need a gift for someone in Oakland?

December 10, 2008

Gift certificates to local stores and restaurants are a perfect option if you’re far away and don’t want to ship large packages cross-country or cross-planet, or if you just don’t know what to get someone. (It’s also a good way to help relatives buy you local goods if you have  aunts and uncles and  grandparents who prefer sending gift cards—which is what prompted me to put this list together.) There are also a number of local artists who offer gift certificates online; check Oakland Unwrapped for more info.

This list is not comprehensive, so if you know of other places that offer gift certificates online or by phone, feel free to add them in the comments. (Most local shops sell gift cards if you visit in person, but the idea behind this list is to create a tool for people shopping from afar, so I’m not including places unless they can handle phone or online purchases.) It’s worth noting that many restaurants will do gift certificates even if they don’t advertise them; this list just includes places that I know for sure will do this remotely. (You may notice that it tracks quite closely with the “places D. and I like to eat” list!)

Places that offer gift certificates online or by phone:


Spas & Salons

Food & Culture

*Gift certificates available only by phone, not online.

(Also, don’t forget that you can donate in people’s names to local charities, too. Some of my favorites because they’re both effective and efficient are the Alameda County Community Food Bank, the East Bay Community Foundation, Habitat for Humanity East Bay, and the East Bay SPCA.)


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