Christmas presents: quick ways to get rid of unwanted Xmas presents - and how to apply for Gift Aid

Nearly a quarter of Brits admit to politely keeping Christmas presents they don’t like, a recent survey reveals.

By Abi Whistance
Monday, 27th December 2021, 12:40 pm

Whether it’s a garish jumper or a bottle of alcohol you simply can’t stand the taste of, we’ve all been through the experience of receiving a present that we hate - but that doesn’t mean we have to keep hold of them.

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Bearing this in mind, Nick Drewe, retail expert at online discount platform We Thrift, shares his top tips on how to get rid of unwanted gifts from Christmas.

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Nick Drewe, retail expert at online discount platform We Thrift, shares his top tips on how to get rid of unwanted gifts.


It goes without saying that the best thing you can do with your unwanted gifts is to donate them to a good cause.

When it comes to charity shop donations, make sure to apply for Gift Aid on your items.

This is a form of tax relief that allows charities to claim an extra 25p on every £1 donation at no extra cost.

In other words, your donation will be boosted!

Other than charity shops, you can also donate your unwanted toys to a children’s hospital, as well as any books to a school or library.


These days, you have more options than just eBay when it comes to selling your unwanted presents online.

For example, there are websites and apps such as Depop, Vinted, Shpock and Facebook Marketplace which let you sell a wide range of items.

If you do decide to sell your unwanted Christmas presents on these platforms, it’s important that your item description is as detailed as possible.

Be clear about the condition of the items, and if you’re dealing with clothes, list the right measurements.

The more information you give about your product, the more likely it will sell quickly.


You can also opt to do your bit and help save the planet with your unwanted presents.

Retailers including John Lewis, M&S, Nike and H&M have schemes where they will buy back your unwanted clothes or shoes.

If you’re wanting to recycle unwanted electronics, games and CDs, you can use websites such as MusicMagpie, which allow you to post your items for an agreed amount of cash.


If you think the present would be better suited for someone else, then you should have no shame in re-gifting an item to a friend, relative or acquaintance that will give it a better home.

Doing this will guarantee that the gift won’t go to waste, and not to mention you’ll also be saving money on buying something new on the person’s birthday.

Just simply re-wrap the present in fresh wrapping paper, or put it in a cute gift bag.

Return or exchange

To return or exchange your items, all that is required to take it back to the store is a proof of purchase.

If a gift receipt was left in your present, you can use this to exchange the item for something else.

If there is no gift receipt, you’ll unfortunately have to ask the person who got the gift for a receipt.

Likewise, if the present was bought online, it is the buyer’s responsibility to return or exchange it for something else.

Obviously, this all boils down to how comfortable you are telling the person you don’t like their gift!


Alternatively, you can choose to keep hold of the present and turn it into something useful for yourself.

For instance, you can use that unwanted top as a hair mask, or craft a fluffy tea towel out of that awful jumper.

As well as this, if you love the style of a particular piece of clothing but hate its colour, perhaps give it a makeover by dying it.

The DIY possibilities are endless!

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