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December 12, 2007


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As long as it's done with the desire of the recipient in mind. Don't regift just to get rid of an item you don't want.

I think regifting is fine as long as it is something that the recipient will like and that it is done tastefully. (That is, take the time to rewrap the gift in new paper or bag.)

I'm almost positive that my brother and his wife did some regifting at Christmas after their wedding. No one really noticed and minded if they did notice. I for one got a very nice knife set and I really didn't care if they bought it or if they regifted.

I think regifting is okay. But with that being said, it has to pass this one test of mine. If you won't buy that item as a gift, then you probably shouldn't regift it.

The key: regifting is only okay if it's given to someone who will appreciate the gift. I follow this guideline: if I would buy it for you if I didn't already have it, I can give it to you as a gift.

What am I supposed to do with a gift I can't use/don't want/don't have room for? I know, I could throw it away, or sell it, but how is that better than giving it to someone who will appreciate it?

How about not give each other gifts?

If you are throwing a gift away, that's a waste. The economy has a whole worked hard to produce a product, and you just throw it away. That's a mis-allocation of resources. It's not your fault that you don't like the gift. It's also not the fault of the person who gave you a gift that you don't like. We need to accept that we don't know what other people want, especially those who we are not very close to.

Treat them better instead of giving each other gifts. It's a waste of money.

My wife and I received a (rather lame) knife-set for our wedding from her uncle. We re-gifted it to her cousin (the uncle's daughter) at her wedding. They didn't notice...

Was it rude? Well, if they were disappointed in the quality of their gift, then they can be disappointed in their own father who gave it to us. As for us, we saved $$$ and recycled something we would never have used anyway.

Granted, I would not recommend this practice if you want to give a gift that is greatly appreciated, remembered, etc. So I guess it all depends on how important the "receivers" are to you.

I fall on the "of course it's fine" side.

We always had a "gift closet" growing up. I am one of four kids and my mother is a teacher and is very active in her church and at school. Lots of gifts poured into the house throughout the year, and we all had lots of opportunities (and/or obligations) for giving. Gifts which couldn't or wouldn't be used/appreciated went into the gift closet. Whenever unexpected or simple gift opportunities/obligations arose, we'd go into the gift closet to see if we could find something approprate.

This technique isn't ideal for important or meaningful gifts like for a significant other. It's for the dozens of other gift opportunities/obligations that we all come accross: kids' teachers appreciation day, kids' friends' birthday parties, your babysitter, your concierge, your sunday school teacher, secret santa, the gift exchange at work, etc.

Jonathan C, I'd say yours is one of the bad examples of regifting--unless you actually thought your cousin would like it and find it useful. It sounds as if you dislike your cousin and somehow feel that she's responsible for how her father behaves.

I'm definitely ok with regifting, as long as the choice is thoughtful, useful, and with good intentions (just like any present). If it's just "let me find a way to pawn off my cheap crap," then I'd rather not get a gift at all. I'm not that needy.

But if someone thinks "Well, I got two/don't need this, and I bet MM could use it" then that's just fine. I don't care if presents given me were free to the gifter.

Edmund: That's a great idea. Why don't you go convince the rest of my family that we shouldn't give gifts?

If it was up to me, I'd only give to my parents, mother-in-law, and relatives under the age of 20.

I'm in the "It's not a problem" group, especially for non-tacky gifts that are duplicates of stuff we already have, or are things we'd never use but are of good quality. Stuff we wouldn't regift gets sold on Ebay or goes to the Goodwill.

I'm in the "It's not a problem" group, especially for non-tacky gifts that are duplicates of stuff we already have, or are things we'd never use but are of good quality. Stuff we wouldn't regift gets sold on Ebay or goes to the Goodwill.

regifting is fine so long as it's done with thought & taste. we keep a gift stash of such things in the closet to keep up with all the little moments that need gifting.

Here's my take on gifting or re-gifting. In either case the gift should be thoughtful and not made out of "obligation". I think this is the key. You see all these people running around like crazy in the malls for the holidays because they feel obliged to give gifts. What kind of gifts do you think the people at the end of the list get? Those are probably the ones that are not as thoughtful, maybe even cheap or rushed in some cases as the person runs out of money and gift options. I'd rather not get a gift at all in that case.

If you receive a thoughtless gift you don't have a use for I'd suggest selling it (eBay, Craigslist) or donating it to Goodwill. If you happen to think of someone who would appreciate that particular gift and would actually find it useful then re-gifting is okay in my mind. But don't re-gift because it's crap you don't want and they wouldn't want either.

I've thought this through quite a bit because my wife and I received a particularly thoughtless and tasteless gift for our wedding. We received a re-gifted < $5 Christmas desk lamp (which we later saw at Walgreens). Not only was the lamp itself a thoughtless gift for a June wedding, we knew it was re-gifted because it still had the tag from the person that gave it to them as well as the price tag! Needless to say we were both insulted considering the per-person expense of each attendee to our wedding which was very nice. So yea, it's all about the thoughts that go into a gift. No gift would have been less memorable and we would have preferred it that way.

It is a constant problem figuring out what to do with gifts I don't want. I have too much stuff already. Re-gifting not only gets rid of the clutter, it also avoids having to shop. Double win.

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