Rules for Regifting | Manners & Etiquette | Meredith Sweetpea


regiftingThe holidays have come and gone, and hopefully you’ve received many nice gifts and memories.

But maybe some of your gifts were just “not quite right” for you, or you think they’d be more appreciated by someone else?  Why not wrap it up again and give it to that friend or loved one? Why, it’s just good practice to recycle!

This, my dears, is called “regifting,” and as with everything, there are etiquette rules.

First, consider the feelings of the 0person who gave you that gift. Show appreciation even if it wasn’t “your cup of tea.”

Second, if you’re going to regift, make sure it isn’t back to that person (horrors!) or to someone the giftor knows or sees.

Third, re-wrap the item in fresh and beautiful wrappings and be sure to check the top, sides and bottom for an existing gift card. Many a re-gift has been exposed because of a gift tag on the bottom. Another option is to give your gift to another as not a gift, but as a surprise, treat, or a shared item.

Good items to regift:

  • New and unopened items
  • Duplicates
  • Items that would be appreciated. (If you think it’s undesirable the new recipient probably will too)
  • A gift that will suit and please the new recipient

Bad items to regift:

  • Handmade items
  • Monogrammed or personalized items
  • One-of-a-kind items
  • Broken, used or soiled items
  • Partially used items
  • Items you have owned for a long time
  • Free or promotional items
  • Fruitcake

Where did the term “Regifting” come from?

The term “regifting” was originally coined in an episode of the NBC sitcom Seinfeld (“The Label Maker”). The character Elaine calls Dr. Tim Whatley a “regifter” after he gives Jerry Seinfeld a label maker that was originally given to Whatley by Elaine.

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