5 Golden Rules of Re-Gifting


“Is it okay to re-gift Christmas presents?” Believe it or not, this is one of the most common questions we hear during the gift-giving season.

Some say it’s cheap, others believe it’s frugal; some say it’s rude, while others say it is being smart. But no matter what anyone says, re-gifting is here to stay.

So, whether you’re trying to be frugal or think that the present just deserves a better owner, here’s how to properly do it without feeling guilty—and getting caught.


  1. It Should be Brand New

Not last-year brand new, but this-year’s-Christmas brand new. The item should be unopened and never tried out and should be in its original and undamaged packaging. If there’s a warranty, include it as well. In case the receiver of the gift returns the item to the store, he shouldn’t be told, “That item is already phase out.”

  1. Give Good and Reasonable Stuff

The old saying ‘one man’s trash is another man’s treasure’ can be true in the re-gifting arena. However, some gifts are just too hideous or inappropriate to be passed on. If you decide to re-gift, give something useful that you either have more than one of, don’t need or just neither your taste nor style. Never re-gift an item just to get rid of it. A perfect gift—whether re-gifted or not—is something you know the receiver will like.

  1. Re-Wrap the Gift

Re-wrap everything—the box, gift wrapper and even the ribbon. See what’s inside first before re-gifting it. You don’t know what’s lurking inside the box. It could contain a personal letter or note for you or another smaller gift that you just missed. Check thoroughly what’s inside before deciding to re-gift it.


  1. Avoid Re-Gifting Within the Same Circle of Friends

This can get really embarrassing. Sam gave Kat a French press for Christmas. Kat isn’t really a fan of fancy coffee, so she re-gifted the press to Kim. Later, Kim invited Sam and Kat for a weekend brunch, and Sam noticed the coffee maker in Kim’s kitchen, and excitedly said “That’s the same French press I gave you, Kat!” Imagine how embarrassing that would be.

  1. Skip Re-Gifting Handcrafted Items

No matter how ugly that painting your sister-in-law painted for you, it was made with effort and love. Giving away gifts made specifically for you can cause hurt feelings if you’re caught. Especially made and one-of-a-kind gifts like ceramics, paintings, handcrafts and frames should be kept no matter how horrible they look.

So, Yes! It’s totally fine to re-gift some of your presents. As long as you keep these rules in mind, re-gifting shouldn’t make you feel guilty or rude.