Overcoming the Challenge of Gift Giving


As the holiday season is getting closer a lot of people have to start thinking about what to get their friends and family. So, I went around Uni asking students what presents they want or are giving family and friends for the holidays. This is what they said:

I asked Uni students what they might ask as a gift for the holidays. Almost everyone said “clothing”, people typically appreciate any type of clothing. But some students specifically mentioned Jordans1 because “they’re cool”.  They also mentioned Formal/Fancy clothing2 because it was something they didn’t own. A lot of people also said different kinds of technology including: Earbuds/Headphones, a Drone, Phone Case, and a Nintendo Switch3. Some more “random” things students said were: Tickets to Lollapalooza, Room Decorations/Furniture4, and Jewelry5. Disney+6 was also mentioned by a few students. Disney+ is a new streaming service which includes all the TV shows and movies Disney owns (old Disney shows, Marvel, National Geographic, etc) it is $6.99 a month.

Personally, parents are always hard to shop for because you never know what to get them and you don’t have much money. For these ideas I looked online and asked other students what they had given their parents in the past. Again, clothing2! Something like a pair of pajamas, scarfs, or hat and gloves is something everyone needs more of. If your parents love to cook you could get them a cook book7 or cooking magazine7. Making parents a photo album/scrapbook9 is also a really nice gift. This can be done by printing the photos out or doing it online.

I know a lot of Uni students have siblings and they can be really hard to buy for, especially if they are not around your age. When I asked students what they had bought their siblings in the past there was a wide range of items. For younger siblings people mostly said toys such as Lego’s10, Dolls11, and craft supplies12. For older siblings’ students said: clothing2, nice toiletries13, and books7.

A game a lot of friend groups play during the holidays is “Secret Santa”. This is a game where everyone in the group puts their name in a hat and then take turns drawing a name. You then have to get a gift for the person who’s name you draw. Secret Santa’s usually have a price limit, while these can be anything, in my experience the limit has never been higher than $20. I never know what I could get friend that is something they will actually use/like. Again, I talked to Uni students asking what they have gotten people in Secret Santa’s. They said: Warm Blanket, Fuzzy Socks, Reusable Straw, Stationary, Water Bottle, and Phone accessories. I have always gotten my Secret Santa gifts at TJ Maxx13 (you can find all the items mentioned above there as well).

I find that there is also always someone who is impossible to buy for, or there is a specific gift you want to give someone. In that case the store Uncommon Goods14 has a lot of unique gifts. For example, while I was looking through the website I found: a hot sauce making kit, butter churner, and phone sanitizer.

I hope this article gives you some inspiration on what to give to people over the holidays!

Links of mentioned gift ideas:

  1. Jordan’s
  2. Clothing
  3. Nintendo Switch
  4. Furniture/Room decorations
  5. Jewlery
  6. Disney +
  7. Books/Magazines
  8. Photo album/Scrapbook
  9. Lego’s
  10. Dolls
  11. Craft Supplies
  12. Nice Toiletries
  13. TJ Maxx
  14. Uncommon Goods