Family News

In-laws officially ‘give the worst presents at Christmas’

Avatar photo
Written by Tim Barnes-Clay

It’s official: the in-laws are the worst when it comes to present-giving at Christmas.

Despite all the good will in the world, in-laws have a reputation for giving gifts which either upset, offend or bewilder the rest of the family. Other culprits for giving Christmas gifts never used include work colleagues, aunts and sisters.

A study of 2,000 adults also found the top 50 gifts no one in their right mind would want. These include knitwear, mug-sets and dodgy romance novels.

One in twenty people said even their partner often fails to get it right when buying presents. While one in ten reported falling out with a loved one after they picked a terrible present.

Christmas present woes

Oliver Harcourt, Head of Vistaprint UK, which commissioned the study via, said: “The survey found Brits had received gifts which included a broken toilet brush, an already opened pack of peanuts and an out-of-date cereal bar! But despite receiving some less than desirable presents, overwhelmingly people felt it was the thought that counted.”

Other festive flops include ill-fitting clothes, toiletry kits, socks and bubble bath.

Adults are stereotypically British when accepting unwanted gifts. One-third will graciously and politely say thank you, while 13 per cent feign fanatical excitement and delight. One in six would rather hide the gift somewhere in the house rather than admit they don’t like it. And a quarter of respondents would re-wrap and re-gift to someone else.

Almost half will take the present to a charity shop so someone else can benefit from their misfortune. However, eight in ten adults admit it’s the thought that counts when present-giving. And Almost six in ten people receive up to five presents each Christmas which they then never use – while just over half receive up to the same number each birthday.

Partners’ presents on top

When it comes to best buyers, nearly four in ten people said their partners buy the most impressive presents, while 20 per cent said children choose great gifts. Clothing, music and personalised gifts made for Brits’ favourite presents. Anything with sentimental value, jewellery from a favourite store or gift vouchers are always received well.

Oliver Harcourt for Vistaprint added: “ The survey highlighted that personalised gifts ranked far ahead of vouchers and jewellery. For years Vistaprint has been providing custom photo-gifts, such as photo-calendars, photobooks and mugs and we’ve heard first hand from our customers how much happiness these gifts can bring.”