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How Much To Gift?

4 years ago by

How Much To Gift?

Or is it better to set a limit?

That’s what we do in my family: you can only spend so much on a gift, and you only have to buy one gift (even though I also get gifts for my brothers and parents…). It’s something we’ve been trying for the past few years and I LOVE it.

You don’t feel the pressure to spend thousands of dollars on gifts for every cousin and second cousin; instead you have the chance to just focus on buying a really thoughtful, beautiful gift for one person — and everyone gets something that’s nicer quality in the end.

There’s just a little extra pressure to make that one gift perfect ;)
Erik has similar rules in his family, too…

But, I’m curious: does everyone have gifting rules in their family or group of friends? How do you gift if you do? (And how do you gift if you don’t?!)


Illustration “FEMME FRANÇAISE”, Garance Doré.


Add yours
  • Love this. We are starting it in my family this year- my sisters and I and our husbands did a secret santa “regular gift” and “gag gift.” Makes it so much more fun to find that awesome gift! (Instead of just outsourcing 7 gifts to Amazon)

  • J’aimerai avoir une règle comme ça dans ma famille ! Cette année, pour la première fois, je vais mettre une limite pour les cadeaux et essayer de ne pas culpabiliser mais sinon ça devient n’importe quoi et on perd toute la magie de Noël… Ca devient plus un concours d’argent !

  • For my husband’s family, we have the rules of $20 value gift per person, or $40 per couple/household. Or you can ask for something that combines all the values of gifts from others – for example, three couples give a gift to a household valued at $120. For the little children we are a bit more generous, and we don’t have to be exactly at $20 per person. This has avoided unneeded stress, and there has been still great gifts coming out of these rules!

  • With the side of my family we are less close to, for the past few years we’ve had a policy of only getting presents for the young children, which is great. It was just a waste of money every year to try to guess what relatives we barely knew might like.

  • Babouille December, 2 2015, 3:24 / Reply

    Merci pour vos si nombreuses idées, qui nous font avancer !
    Chez nous, c’est plus de cadeaux matériels: place aux livres, CD, places de concert, cours de yoga, voyages, etc ! L’idée c’est de ne plus nous encombrer d’objets dont nous ne savons que faire à la fin, surtout si le cadeau ne plaît pas dès le début !

  • For a few years we’ve been doing a kind of Secret Santa. That way we only have to give one present and receive one present. It’s really fun because on Christmas Eve we get together and everyone says what they want for Christmas, like a wish list. Afterwards, everyone write their name on a piece of paper and then we randomly choose one piece of paper. There you have the person you have to buy the present to. It’s actually super fun because there’s always someone who pick his or her own name and we have to start over. Then on 31st December we exchange our presents. It’s a strange moment to Exchange the presents but since we all live in different parts of the world is the only way it works!

  • The Mister and I set a price limit for how much we can spend on gifts for each other.

  • My husband’s family is large so we do a Secret Santa exchange with a $50 limit for the adults and shop for the children. Several years ago I suggested to my parents, my brother and my sister-in-law that we stop buying gifts for each other and make a contribution to a charity of our choice instead and then get gifts for our kids. They were thrilled with the idea and it really changes the focus of our holiday season to true giving and eliminates so much of the anxiety of overspending on things that your family may not even use or want.

  • Concernant la famille proche (parents, frère, belle soeur) chacun fait un cadeau à l’autre.

    Ensuite le 25.12, on fête Noel avec la grande famille (cousins, cousines, tantes, oncles). Ma tante fait une liste de qui doit faire un cadeau à qui. (C’est sensé rester secret). Du coup, tout le monde doit faire 1 cadeau et recoit 1 cadeau.

    Cette année, j’ai tout fait moi-même (scrub pour le corps, sels de bains, pralines de bain,…). J’espère que la personne apprécira.

  • I try and give “experience” gifts when ever possible! Their memory lasts far longer than any material good:)


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