As we draw nearer to Christmas there’s that typical annual spike in web searches, whether it’s ‘money saving gift ideas’ or ‘DIY Christmas gifts’ or ‘last minute presents’; there’s always an almost tangible sense of panic. You could run to the stores and trawl through the remnants, picking apart the discount section of Kmart or facing the apocalyptic scenes at your local op shop. You could even make your own Christmas gift with pipe cleaners and sequins, or better yet, handwrite a coupon booklet for free hugs and foot rubs.
When it comes to low cost gift ideas, we’ve put our heads together and assessed every possible option, and what do we conclude? Re-gifting. It’s simple, quick, and doesn’t have to cost a cent, as long as you’re savvy about getting away with it. That’s why we’ve put together this handy guide for becoming a re-gifting master, so you can keep the flow of recycled gifts continually moving without anyone getting suspicious. Read on for our top tips, and please get in touch if you have more ideas (or re-gifting horror stories, because those are always hilarious).
1. Un-Wrap The Original Gift
This may sound obvious, but you’d be surprised how often people re-gift presents without unwrapping them first to see what’s inside. You may think it’s a safe bet, you may know that your Aunt Marge gives you the same pencil case every year so it’s fine to re-gift, but what if this year she decided to embroider your name on the side? What if she decided to fill it with cash rather than the usual boiled sweets? If avoiding what-ifs is important to you, we highly recommend being vigilant and taking the extra time to un-wrap and re-wrap the gift. It’s a small sacrifice to potentially save a huge embarrassment.
2. Check Labels & Tags
Again, if you’re going to re-gift an unwanted present, we implore you to put a little effort into the endeavour. Name tags, price tags, labels from stores that don’t exist in your town, these are simple changes you can make to your gift to erase any evidence that you didn’t purchase it yourself. It takes twenty seconds to check any labels and tags, but could take twenty years to make amends with your disgruntled Secret Santa.
3. Assess The Network
If you are serious about not getting caught in the act, drawing a spider diagram of network connections can be highly beneficial. Start with you and the gifter in the centre, then add names of mutual friends, family members and colleagues around the edge, connecting any who have a direct link to one another. This will get you thinking about possible unforeseen circumstances in which your original gifter and future giftee could meet; a worthwhile contingency exercise that could save you from disaster.
4. Use Gift Cards
The first three points on this list are baby steps, but now we’re taking it up a level. If you want to completely erase any paper trail, using an old gift card to purchase a new present is pure re-gifting genius. In most circumstances, if you’ve made it eleven months without your gifter asking what you spent your gift card on, they’re probably not going to, so you’re safe to use it on someone else. You’re not losing any money, but the future gift receiver gets something they might actually want, and depending on the value of the gift card, it could be surprisingly costly - win-win!
5. Give a Gifting Owl Experience Gift
Every Gifting Owl voucher is fully exchangeable, so if you buy your girlfriend a skydive and she tells you she has a crippling fear of heights (how could you?), she can easily swap it for something more to her taste!
So there you have it, our top tip guide on re-gifting for dummies, and how to successfully spread cheer without breaking the bank. Hopefully you’ve learnt some skills that will ease the usual pre-Christmas panic, and picked up some great ideas for unique gifts! Feel free to get in touch if you have any questions, but for now we bid you farewell and wish you luck mastering the art of re-gifting.