So, your well-meaning but slightly dotty Aunt Magda's unique Christmas gift idea of another red sweater with a huge reindeer embroidered in multi colors did not sit well with you. Of course you grin and wear it and be an awful good sport and all that, but once poor aunty is off to her farm, do you really plan on wearing that sweater again? In all likelihood, that sweater’s going to just sit in your attic gathering dust. What exactly is to be done with unwanted Christmas gifts?
Ask For A Refund
If you have the original receipt, get back to the store and get cash refund, or credit note. Most shops don’t part with refunds gladly unless an item is faulty, but they’re more lenient during Christmas, especially the big stores. Note that without the receipt you’ll not get the full value of the item, only its current value. Always ask the gift giver for the receipt, just in case you need to exchange. Check the refund time limit the store to be sure you get a refund.
Exchange The Gift
Some stores insist on the receipt, without which they won’t refund you. In such cases, as long as the store is satisfied the item was bought from them, they will offer to exchange the item. In case of clothing, you need the original tags attached. Christmas gift exchange ideas such as DVDs, games and electronic items doesn’t work that well. You might be able to trade them as used items at the store. If electrical goods and gadgets have been taken out of their original packing, you may not get a refund.
Resell The Gift
There are many auction and online sale sites on which you can sell unwanted Christmas gifts. Opening an account on eBay or similar sites is fairly straightforward. Decide if it’s worth to sell low-priced items considering the seller fees and the other taxes and commissions you may have to pay.
Recycle The Gift
If you’re not able to get a refund or a gift exchange, sell your unwanted, unopened gifts to charity shops. These shops look for donations, but they’ll also buy items at a lower price to sell to the underprivileged market. Be sure not to disturb the packaging and sell the item just as you received it, to get the best value you can.
Re-Gift The Gift
Rewrap the gift and put it away to gift to someone else. Just make sure that you note down the name of the original giver, so you don’t gift it right back to them. Best to hand over Christmas gifts as birthday gifts and housewarming gifts over the year.
If someone gifted you a bulky patio set you don’t want, or a set of golf clubs when you don’t play golf, advertise these items locally. Put up a notice on your local supermarket’s board, or put up an Ad in your local newspaper’s classified section.
Hold A Garage Sale
After all, an unwanted Christmas gift you receive did not cost you money, personally; so it’s okay to get any value for it. Accumulate all your unloved and unwanted Christmas gifts over the year and set up a garage sale. If you’re worried that your friends and relatives might visit the sale and spot their gifts in the pile, throw the gifts in your car, drive to a different town and sell them there.
Sell The Goods To A Seconds Store
Seconds, or thrift stores are always buying items and curiosities from people. They buy at a lower price and sell higher. Check out nearby thrift stores and get rid of the gifts you don’t want. The advantage is that the thrift store may have some item that you do want and you can make an exchange deal.
If you know you cannot make money for some gifts online, register at a couple of good gift swapping sites. List the stuff you don’t want, along with information on condition and age. There are swap sites for fashion items, games, electrical and electronic items and much more. Just make sure that the item you evaluate your counterpart’s profile and read feedback before swapping gifts.
You can always donate unwanted Christmas gifts to a charity shop, to hospitals, centers for homeless people and old age homes. Any gift would be welcomed, even Aunt Magda’s truly un-wearable reindeer jumper. So many people suffer cold winters out on the streets, so the more you can donate, the better.
Save It For Next Christmas
Retain the Christmas gifts you don’t want in their original packing in airtight cartons. When Christmas comes calling next year, repack them and gift them to friends (be careful not to gift the original owner) When you create your Christmas gift budget, tick off names for whom you already have last year’s gifts waiting.
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