This should come as no surprise to avid listeners, but audiobooks make great gifts! In the digital world, an audiobook gift can be an easy, quick “gift card” option, or you can tailor choices to someone’s interest. Here’s how to get started.
Most websites that sell audiobooks have gift programs. Some make individual titles you select available, while others offer a membership that allows a listener to choose their own title. Looking at the platform where YOU get audiobooks is the easiest way to start. Listen in to my Behind the Mic episode on gifting audiobooks and read more, below.
Independent bookstores are near and dear to my heart, and your audiobook gifts can also support your local bookstore. You designate your bookstore when you set up an account. Libro.fm uses gift credits (1 credit = 1 audiobook title) and credit bundles (2 to 24 credits $30 - $342). Your gift recipient picks their own audiobooks, and your local bookstore is supported by your purchase! The audiobooks are played through the Libro.fm app.
Audible’s online store has the largest title selection, as well as an array of gift membership options (1-, 3-, 6-, 12-months, $15-$150). They also set up browsable subject categories like “Escapism” and “Book to Screen.” Audible titles can be played through the Audible app.
While Amazon is the parent company to Audible, Audible titles also show up on the print book’s Amazon listing, and it’s possible to give an individual title via Amazon, using the “Give as a Gift” option. The recipient will need to set up an Audible account.
If you are a user of Apple Books, gifting an individual audiobook is streamlined. Directly from the Apple Books app, it’s easy to browse titles and preview samples. When you select “Gift This Audiobook,” an Apple gift card appears. The simplicity of the display and selection choices make this a good experience.
We are so grateful that CDs are still available here. Audio Editions is an invaluable resource, and they still have a mail-order catalog (and a toll-free number you can call to order, in addition to their website). Most titles are also available as a single MP3-CD. This is an audiobook gift you can actually wrap up!
During the pandemic, many families found that listening to audiobooks together was not just a wonderful way to share stories but also to share screen-less time together. This interest continues, and as young listeners grow, they also appreciate having their own devices to use to listen. I was recently introduced to the Yoto Player, an adorable device for children to play audiobooks that are loaded to hard plastic cards the size of a credit card. The Yoto is bright, portable, and pretty rugged, and it’s easy to play the audiobook cards. The story choices include many audio classics like CHARLOTTE'S WEB performed by Meryl Streep and a full cast and MATILDA read by Kate Winslet and series including The Magic Tree House, The Chronicles of Narnia, and Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events. Many Spanish-language titles are available as well. There are music options as well as a “make-your-own” audiobook, and it’s bluetooth enabled. The devices are $119.99 (Yoto Player), and $69.99 (Mini Yoto); the cards start at $9.99 and also come in sets. As a holiday gift to a family with little listeners, a Yoto player might become a BFF.
While we’re on the subject of gifts, I should not neglect to mention that AudioFile has gift subscriptions. Audiobook listening continues to gain fans and users of all ages. AudioFile is full of wonderful audiobook choices for every listener. Pair it with a gift card from one of the retailers above, and it's like gifting the candy store to your recipient.
AudioFile is your #1 audiobook review source.
Photo courtesy of Yoto Player.