Christmas Gift Exchanges

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Christmas Gift Exchanges

Occasion: Usually done for office or club parties. However, the family can use these ideas for a gift exchange. Sometimes it gets too expensive to buy a bunch of inexpensive gifts when the recipients would probably enjoy a quality gift instead.

Types of exchanges

Favorite book

Many people like to do gift exchanges with their friends during the holidays. A book exchange is a great way to do this if you have a group of friends who all love to read. Each person brings one wrapped book to the exchange. Then, everyone takes turns picking a book from the pile. The catch is that you can’t pick your own book. Once everyone has a book, the fun begins! You get to unwrap your gift and see what book you’ve received. This is a great way to get new books and spend time with your friends simultaneously. Plus, it’s a lot cheaper than buying gifts for everyone.

Cookie Exchange

A cookie exchange is a gift exchange where each person brings a large batch of homemade cookies to the party and then goes home with an assortment of different cookies. It’s a great way to get various homemade cookies without making them all yourself! Depending on the number of people participating, each person will bring 2 to 3 dozen cookies. Divide each batch of cookies between those attending so each person gets a sample of all the cookies.

Christmas ornament exchange

Christmas is a great time to get together with friends and family, and one of the best ways to do that is with a gift exchange. Why not try a Christmas ornament exchange if you’re looking for a unique gift exchange idea? Here’s how it works: everyone participating brings a wrapped ornament to the exchange and puts them into a bag. Each person then takes turns picking out an ornament until everyone has one. The only rule is that the ornaments must be unique and under 10 dollars or whatever price limit has been set. This is a great way to add some new decorations to your tree without spending a lot of money, and it’s also a fun way to get into the Christmas spirit with friends and family.

Secret Santa

Draw names at the beginning of December. Set a limit on how much can be spent in total. The person giving the gifts selects a few small gifts for their recipient. During December, the gifts are given without revealing the gift giver. On a set day, everyone reveals whose Secret Santa they were.

White elephant or Yankee gift exchange

Set a dollar amount for the gifts. On the gift exchange day, the gifts are randomly numbered. Then the participants draw a number from one to the number of people participating in the exchange. The participants receive a gift matching their number. Whoever draws the number one opens their gift. The person with number two can either exchange their unopen gift for the already open gift or keep it and open it. If the gift is exchanged, the person getting the unopened gift opens it. The next person can choose from the first two open gifts, keep and open his, and so on. You can limit how many times a certain gift may be exchanged, such as twice or thrice. The game continues until all the gifts are opened. At this time, whoever opened their gift first can exchange whatever gift they currently have with another gift as long as it has not reached the exchange limit.


Participants set a dollar amount for each person wanting to play. One or two people collect money and buy a gift equal to the dollar amount times how many people are playing. For example, ten people paid $20. The people buying gifts would buy ten twenty-dollar gifts. They wrap and number the gifts. On the day of the gift exchange, the participants play Bingo and win one of the prizes. The game is played until everyone has a gift. At that time, the gifts are opened.

Gifts under $10

Christmas ornament
Pre-paid phone card
Christmas socks
Small book
Pocket calendars
See stocking stuffers

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See also:

Christmas related gifts

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