How Much Does It Cost to Engrave a Gift?: A Beginner's Guide to Personalized Gifts on a Budget (2021)

Dayspring Pens Braxton ballpoint pen in green

Finding a personalized gift on a budget online can be a bit of a pain in the neck.

Here's my proverbial chiropractic gift advice for relieving stiffness, anxiety, and dizziness, plus it can help you find the right gift!

What I want to do in this article is discuss general concerns about the price of engraving and answer frequently ask questions that a lot of people have about the engraving process, and then I'll suggest a few places to look for affordable personalized gift options.

First, let's talk about one of the most whiplash-inducing parts of the buying experience: money.

How much does personalization usually cost?

Luckily, answer is usually: not that much!

It usually depends on how a company can personalize your order, whether its something like laser engraving or its something more in-depth like a completely customized item.

How much does laser engraving cost?

For most engraving companies (like Dayspring Pens), personalization is free. The cost is included in the price of the items.

Other companies will probably only charge a small fee for engraving (usually between $3-$10).

This means that personalization by laser engraving (as well as personalization with embroidery or something else that just adds little personal touch) is the most affordable avenue.

How much does a fully personalized gift cost?

If the company you are buying from personalizes the whole item (for example, items like bobbleheads), then it requires you to give detailed specifications.

These sorts of gifts can be pricier, but, again, usually the cost of personalization is added to the total cost of the gifts.

That means you likely won’t be surprised by a whole mess of added fees tacked onto the advertised price.

How long does the engraving/personalization process take?

It depends on the manufacturing guidelines of the company you want to engrave your gifts.

I wrote an another ultimate guide to the engraving process that gives a lot of insight into what actually happens when you order an engraved gift.

As far as the timeline goes…

For some companies, the process can take a long time (usually 4-14 days), and it depends the availability of their products.

For others, it’s usually done on or around the same day as when you ordered it.

Some companies offer rush production, so you can ensure that the personalization is completed and your gifts are shipped the same day you ordered them.

Just make sure your company offers this same guarantee!

Gifts that require a lot more in-depth or detailed personalization will likely take longer than engraved gifts, so just be prepared for a bit of a wait.

If there’s a particular day you need your gifts, purchase ahead so that your gifts can arrive on time. Don’t procrastinate!

How long does shipping take?

Like everything else, it depends.

But most companies offer a variety of shipping methods to get your purchase to you on your timeline.

What personalized gifts should I get if I'm in a rush?

That depends on the company!

Here’s a short list of 6 of the best personalization and engraving companies and their production and shipping options so you know what you’re getting and when:

1.) Things Remembered

Things Remembered is one of the largest engraving and personalization companies out there. They're usually one of the top options on a Google search page.

They say this about their production timeline:

“Most orders ship in 1-2 business days after the order is placed for Standard and Express Delivery Methods. Economy orders ship within 4 days.”

You have to purchase before 3pm EST if you want to get your gift shipped ASAP.

2.) Personalization Mall

Personalization Mall is probably the absolute largest company specializing in engraving and personalization.

They have a few different options for production and shipping.

They sort of lump production times in with shipping timetables.

Here's a list of their shipping options and the timeline notice that Personalization Mall has up on their website.

First, there’s Economy Shipping…

Typically ships within 4-5 business days. Please allow additional 6-10 business days for transit time.

Then there’s Standard Shipping:

Please allow 2-3 business days for personalization process and additional 3 to 5 business days for shipping time with average delivery between 7 to 10 business days after the order is placed.

Then there’s Expedited Shipping

Unless otherwise specified on order confirmation page, orders ship Monday through Friday and will be delivered 3 business days after you place your order.

Finally, there’s Rush Shipping…

Unless specified otherwise on order confirmation page, orders ship Monday through Friday and will be delivered 2 business days after you place your order.

All in all, Personalization Mall can be pretty quick to engrave or personalize your custom gifts, and they let you make a pretty accurate guess of when you’ll get them.

3.) Dayspring Pens

This is us! Yay!

At Dayspring Pens, we have a ton of custom engraved gift pens to choose from. We like to think we’re a great option for your needs.

Orders from us usually ship about 3 business days. Depending on production volume, it's often much sooner, but getting rush production ensures that your gifts ship the day you buy (provided you buy before 3pm EST).

4.) Zazzle

On Zazzle, you can shop for gifts based on a specified date, and each product page usually tells you the earliest date it can arrive.

With them, everything kind of depends on the gift, but they offer a huge selection of personalization specifications.

5.) Shutterfly

Shutterfly’s production and shipping timelines are also

 Economy: 6-10 business days

Standard: 5-7 business days

Expedited: 4-5 business days

Rush: 3-4 business days

Super Rush (for select gifts only): 1-2 business days

If all that you need is a  4x6 glossy print, Shutterfly also has a partnership with CVS, so you can purchase a print and have it ready in about an hour!

6.) Snapfish

Snapfish’s production and shipping times are also lumped together.

However, they don’t really seem to budge on their production time.

It’s almost always a 3-day process; this is probably due to the sheer amount of orders that Snapfish gets in a given day.

All in all, Snapfish can get your gifts to you in about 4 days, it just depends on how much you want to pay for shipping.

Need help deciding which gifts to get? Here's some of the best engraved gifts at the best cost that I've found from all over the internet:

5 Affordable Custom Engraved Gift Ideas to Add to Your List:

1.) Beat Block Cell Phone Speaker

Beat Block with Monogram from The Man Registry

This is such a cool gift!

I always just put my phone in like a mug or a bowl or something to amplify sound, but this beat block is designed specifically to channel sound to the max without needing to be charged.

Get it engraved for your gift recipient so they can pump up the jams and feel cared about.

2.) Bobbleheads

Customized Single Bobblehead

For the ultimate Dwight Schrute fan!

Custom bobbleheads make really funny desk items. It expresses humor and the ability to not take oneself so seriously—especially at work!

3.) Tac-Force Knife

Tac Force TF606WS engraved pocket knife from Palmetto Wood Shop

A custom Tac-Force pocket knife with a unique monogram engraving offers a unique twist on a go-to buying option for a more-than-affordable price.

For the person who always has a handy blade on them; get them an even more special one that shows how much you care.

4.) Personalized desk wedge

Customized Desk Wedge from Dayspring Pens

A personalized desk wedge is the best way to either provide you with a special opportunity to make your coworkers laugh or show your real appreciation in a new way.

It comes with a custom engraving at a reasonable price

Custom engrave it with "World's Best Boss," or perhaps "Grand Master of the Water Cooler." Whatever works!

 

5.) Wedding Ring Box

Wedding Ring Box from Etsy

Get one of these to hold your fine, covenantal jewelry, and remind you of who do it for.

Get both of your initials on it!

 

5 Affordable Personalized Gift Ideas to Add to Your List:

While these aren't laser engraved gifts, here's five more of the best personalized gifts at the best cost that I've gathered for you:

1.) Custom Cassette Tapes

Clear Cassette Tape from InTheClouds

Cassette tapes in 2021? Might seem counterintuitive, but who for those of us who grew up listening to tapes over and over, it's a comforting throwback. Plus, you can get the tapes printed with your new, heard-it-before-it-was-cool tunes.

So, for the hipster in all of us, there's these amazing custom cassette tapes.

Get back to handing out sweet mix tapes to your friends.

2.) DivvyUp socks

DivvyUp Socks

We all have that friend who wears the wildest socks.

Why not add to his/her collection of ankle-length comedy and positive spirit by ordering a pair of custom socks.

3.) Playing Cards

Playing Cards from Bicycle

For the keen-eyed poker player or consistent champion of Go Fish, a customized deck of cards is just simple fun!

4.) Classic novels with your loved one as the main character

An adaptation of Sherlock Holmes from Books By You

This is such a great idea!

Basically they comb through classic books and replace the name of the main character with the name of whoever you want, and voila! They become the main character in what was once a Sherlock Holmes novel.

5.) Toilet paper!!!

Unique Printed Toilet Paper from PrintedTP

I think this is one of the best gifts in the list by far.

Get personalized toilet paper to create memories that just won't wipe away!

 

People also ask me...

What should I engrave on a gift?

I've written a whole other article answering this question. Check it out here!

How are pens engraved?

Check out my other article on the whole laser engraving process!

 

Conclusion

I hope this article answered your question about affordable engraved gifts and production times.

Let us know which affordable engraved gifts you love and why in the comments!