Holiday gifting etiquette can be challenging. Knowing how to navigate etiquette and exclusion can make your holiday season less stressful and can help you avoid those uncomfortable situations with neighbors. Consider the following scenario:
It is 8:00 pm on 23 DecemberThird And you’re sitting on your couch, both exhausted and satisfied that you’ve locked the last item in your Christmas “to do” list. It is finally time to relax and enjoy what is left of the holiday season. As you’re about to turn on the TV, watch one of the 10 episodes of your favorite TV show you’ve recorded on your DVR in your doorbell. You drag yourself to your feet and answer the door. To your surprise you moved into the neighborhood three months ago and find a neighbor down the street who you have met only a few times. He has a beautifully wrapped gift in his hands. After some happiness on the porch she presents you and wishes you a merry Christmas. When you come back in and open the gift you find Cute Tea Themed Gift Baskets With mugs, tea, honey sticks, a tea pot, etc. This is a good gift that was clearly not made at home.
What do you do now? This neighbor was not on your gift list and you have nothing around the house for her. Do you have to walk the store the day before Christmas to try and find a gift for your neighbor? Can you just bake a plate of cookies and call it good? We will answer these questions and more in this Holiday Gifting Etiquette Guide.
- Should I buy holiday gifts for my neighbors?
- Should I continue each year once I give a holiday gift to a neighbor?
- If I get a holiday gift from a neighbor, should I visit again?
- How Much Should I Spend on a Christmas Gift for a Neighbor?
- What kind of holiday gift should I give my neighbors?
- Can I give a homemade holiday gift to a neighbor?
- When is the best time to give Christmas gifts to a neighbor?
1) Should I buy holiday gifts for neighbors?
To answer this question, we must first define the term “neighbor”. For the purpose of this article, a neighbor is someone you interact with on occasion but not someone you consider a friend. If there is any doubt that there is a neighbor or friend, ask yourself this question, “If my car breaks down late at night, will I call this person and ask them to pick me up?” If your answer is yes compared to that person, then your “friend” should be on the gift list, which may be very different from the neighboring gift list for you. A neighbor can live near you or someone from your book club, church, school PTA, etc.
To decide whether to give you a gift or not, you should consider how much you personally know over the past few months and how much they have interacted with you. If your conversation is limited to the occasional wave as you drive their home on their way out of the neighborhood, you don’t have to worry about the gift. However, if you have regular conversations, you may want to add them to your gift list. Given which neighbors will give you gifts, you should answer the following questions:
- Has he gifted you in the past?
- Have you interacted regularly with him over the past few months?
- Is there a neighborhood gifting tradition in your neighborhood?
- Would you like to develop a more important relationship with this person?
If you have answered two or more questions, you should get a holiday gift to that neighbor.
2) Once I give a holiday gift to a neighbor should I continue each year?
Once you start exchanging gifts with a neighbor, do you need to do this each year? The simple answer is yes. Whenever you start exchanging gifts with someone that you must assume that will continue each year. For that reason, you should choose wisely which neighbors to add to your gift list.
There are circumstances that can stop the gifting cycle. For example, if you or your neighbor steps in, this is a great time to stop giving gifts as long as you want the relationship to continue. Another reason might be to stop exchanging gifts with a neighbor if you no longer have a conversation with them. Perhaps both of you were serving in the same PTA committee, but it no longer exists and you have not continued the relationship. If you have not exchanged gifts in the past, you want to give a gift in reserve, if they give you something, but it is not the one who gives the gift first.
3) If I get a holiday gift from a neighbor, should I visit again?
Generally, the answer is yes. Proper gifting etiquette suggests that when a neighbor gives you a gift, you should reciprocate with a holiday gift of equal value. Of course, there are always exceptions. If you are not in financial position then you do not need to do this. However, at least you should show them appreciation with a heartfelt thank you note or a small homemade gift if possible.
So, what do you do if you are given a present and do not have the time to reciprocate in an upward position? First of all, don’t take stress. Even etiquette experts may feel awkward in these situations. Susan newman A social psychologist and etiquette expert recommend the following:
“I’m definitely embarrassed when I caught the guard that way” Huffpost. “This happened to me once when Christmas was being celebrated with a family that did not belong to us. My friend’s mother gave me a gift I was definitely not expecting. “
In response, Newman offered some honesty. “I told the woman, ‘I didn’t know we were giving presentations. I think I have nothing for you, but I like this gift a lot. Thank you,’ and I left it at that.” “
Newman believes that all you should do in such a situation. Don’t make excuses and Certainly Don’t pretend you have a gift at home with your pal’s name.
“Telling them that you forgot the gift is not coming true,” she said. “Besides, you’re just feeling guilty, upset, or embarrassed about not being a gift to that person. You’re being pressured into what you think is proper social etiquette, but it’s something that You don’t have to. “
4) How much should I spend on a Christmas gift for a neighbor?
National Retail Federation Shows that 2019 holiday sales increased by 3.8% to 4.2% in 2019, totaling $ 730 billion.
How much of the $ 730 billion will come from your wallet on your neighbor’s gift? While there is no correct answer to how much you should spend on a gift for a neighbor, there are some guidelines that you should consider. In addition to how well you know your neighbor, you should also keep in mind that they want to build a mutual relationship, and you do not want to put a financial burden on them. You also need to remember that you are starting a gift exchange that will continue in future years that will be difficult to scale back or discontinue.
As a rule of thumb your neighbor gifts should be affordable somewhere in the range of $ 10 to $ 20. There may be situations where you want to spend more for a particularly generous neighbor, but this should be an exception to the rule.
5) What kind of holiday gifts should I give my neighbors?
When trying to decide what kind of holiday gift a neighbor is given, you are not well aware that there are some things to keep in mind. You should avoid gifting liquor or other liquor until everyone drinks, unless you know that they will appreciate that neighbor. Food or snack gifts are appropriate, but you should stay away from some common allergens like peanuts. Since more and more people are gluten intolerant, you should include a variety of snacks including gluten free options. Items like hot chocolate, sugar cookies, homemade chocolate, or a Breakfast Gift Basket All make fabulous holiday food gifts for neighbors.
Small Christmas decorations or other items are also suitable for the home, but your gift should be for the family, not just one person in the house. Family board games, DIY gingerbread house kits and cookie dough gifts make holiday fun gifts that will keep children busy while they are out of school.
6) Can I give a homemade holiday gift to a neighbor?
Homemade gifts make great neighbor gifts for the holidays. The more creative the better. Best place to find Creative gift ideas for your neighbor Pinterest. You will find hundreds of cheap gift ideas that you can make at home. A homemade gift from cookies to Christmas décor is a great way to wish a neighbor a happy holiday.
7) When is the best time to give a Christmas gift to a neighbor?
From the example above we learned that it is not a good idea to leave a gift on your neighbor’s porch on Christmas Eve. As a general rule you should distribute your neighbor gifts three to five days before Christmas. If you did not already have a plan to give you a gift, give your neighbor time.
If you were given a present at the last minute, then it is mutually correct to do with the gift after Christmas? If you are going to give a holiday gift after Christmas, then you should consider a New Year celebration gift. Probably a bottle of sparking cider with cards and some noise makers wishing them a happy new year.
Holiday gift etiquette
We hope that the answers to these seven holiday gift etiquette questions will help you know when, why and how to give holiday gifts to your neighbors. If you remember nothing else from this article, we hope you remember that we should give a gift because we want to and we should not expect anything in return. If you keep this in mind then you really can’t be wrong.
If you have other gift etiquette questions, please let me know in the comments section below. Also, we would love to hear from you Holiday Gift Ideas for Friends and Neighbors.
What to do about birthday gifts for friends, family or neighbors? Check us Birthday gift etiquette Blog to get answers to all your questions.