Limit Re-gifting by Smart Shopping

Posted by PartyWeDo on Monday, October 15, 2012

Host a “high-value” gift exchange to reduce re-gifting

White elephant gifts re-giftedDon’t you just hate it when your gifts get re-gifted? You go through all the trouble and effort of buying someone a gift, not to mention spending a handful of your hard-earned cash only to find your gift handed over to another person. But even worse is when you get a gift that’s just so generic it’s practically screaming for you to re-gift it! In a situation like this, only your conscience can really stop you from leaving that gift on a bench somewhere for someone else to find.
It’s definitely a sticky situation having to give or receive a “re-gift worthy” gift. But no one has to carry the burden of being tempted to re-gift. As the host of the white elephant gift party, you certainly can avoid this awkward situation by suggesting that your guest follow a few simple steps as they show for white elephant gifts.

Before Buying Gifts: Do Your Research

Before embarking on any gift hunt, you need to do your research on your gift’s recipient. This is probably the most important step of all to ensure that your gifts don’t get re-gifted.
Doing the necessary research on your recipient will give you the information you need to select the perfect gift for him or her. Since it’s somewhat insulting to ask your recipient what he or she wants for a gift (unless your recipient is a child, in which case it’s perfectly fine as children are always more than happy to tell you what they want), you’ll have to be a little more creative when it comes to doing your research:

  • Listen for clues. Has your recipient been complaining about a broken item he or she owns? Has he or she been pining for the newest model of something? Then there’s your gift.
  • Ask your recipient’s relatives or friends what he or she likes. Just be sure your sources stay discreet.
  • Observe your recipient. Does he or she have a favorite color of clothing? A favorite pastime? A special cause or collection perhaps? What does he or she do outside of work? What are his or her favorite movies, books, bands, or sports teams? What kind of personality does he or she have? All of these can clue you in on the perfect gift to give.

When Buying Gifts

There are an endless number of gift ideas, but some of them are more resistant to re-gifting than others. These include:

  • Good food or wine – Good food make great re-gift proof gifts because they can spoil if not consumed soon, so recipients can’t re-gift them unless there’s someone they can give the food to in a hurry. Just make sure not to scrimp on the quality or flavor of the food or wine. Also, make sure it’s their favorite or something they’re sure to like, and definitely not something they’re allergic to!
  • Quirky gifts – Quirky gifts are not just odd or unique items, but items that express the uniqueness of your recipient as well. Many people think it’s hard to find quirky gifts but that all depends on where you look. For instance, online you can find plenty of gift stores like Hostile Bacon that specialize in quirky gifts and also offer other great online gifts. Lego lovers will adore their Lego brick cufflinks while earth-friendly folks will surely appreciate their recycled denim slippers.
  • Personalized gifts – Personalized gifts are those that have your recipient’s name, photo or other personal touches to it, so they can’t give these away unless they know someone else with exactly the same name or face as them. But again, make sure that whatever you personalize for them is something that they will surely like and will fit their personality and lifestyle.
  • Meaningful gifts – The very fact that they are being given to someone during a special occasion make gifts meaningful already, but that level of “meaning” isn’t enough to stop them from being re-gifted. To make sure they don’t get re-gifted, they have to be extra meaningful. So don’t just hand over a pair of socks or a sweater, give a scarf in their favorite color. Don’t just give a random book, give a beautiful journal with your recipient’s favorite poem inside. If she bakes, give her measuring cups shaped like hearts to show how much you love her. Add in a special message and your gift is sure to stay with the person it was meant for.
  • • Gift certificates – If all else fails, gift certificates most likely won’t. Just be sure to get one from a business or store where almost anyone can find something they like.

After Buying Gifts: Keep the Receipt

After purchasing your gift, don’t forget to keep your receipt and let the recipient know that their gift can be exchanged if it doesn’t quite suit them. Once you follow these foolproof tips though, there’s a very slim chance of that ever happening again!


Debra Wright blogs about a plethora of topics including birthday ideas in shopping and other fields. Wright considers Hostile Bacon as one of the leaders in online gift shopping.


Wacky white elephant gift ideas


We are passionate about white elephant gifts and white elephant gift exchange parties. We will do all that we can to make your experience with AlbinoPhant better than you can imagine.

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