I think it all depends on how long they have been playing and what kind of priority golf is in their life, as well as financial situation.
I believe beginners should get a quality box set. I have had a lot of success with beginners getting the Strata Ultimate box set from Callaway. The Strata Ultimate comes with a real Titanium driver, not a Titanium composite type driver. I believe it sells somewhere between $400.00 and $500.00. The way I explain it is they are taking proven technology from a couple of years ago and putting into their box set.
If you are an avid golfer playing and practicing multiple times a week you should consider getting fit, especially if you can afford it. Whether you get lessons or not, if you have played a long time you probable have a swing that is repeating. For some people that may not be a good thing, maybe get some lessons. However what I mean is if you are going to take the time and spend the money your swing needs to be somewhat repeatable. This is what the club fitter is looking for.
If your swing is all over the place it will make it very difficult for the club fitter to zero in on what your tendencies are. If the toe of the club is digging on one swing and the heal of the club is digging on another swing it is going to be difficult for the club fitter to zero in on what you need.
I also don’t recommend getting fitted for clubs before you start taking lessons. You may need some swing corrections and that can change how your clubs interact with your new swing.