From the netball girls to your office lunch pals to the awfully extended family members bought begrudgingly together for yet another year in the ultimate Comi-con-eqse disaster scene that is Christmas Day at Grandma’s, Secret Santa is EVERYWHERE. Now with Friendsmas Day having been made official (it’s Saturday 17th December, BTW) it’s more important than ever to nail this season’s stealthy giving of randomised gifts.
A FRIENDLY BUNCH: Probably the easiest demographic to buy for. These people have probably sent you home in more taxis than Lord Sugar has morons and stood by you through almost every questionable decision you’ve ever made. Trust your instincts and choose carefully. You’ll need them to stick around in 2017 – it’s going to be a big one. These options would be a safe bet: FOR HIM / FOR HER
THE OFFICE EDITION: You spend more time with these people than your partner, housemate and therapist combined. The last thing you need is for an office Secret Santa to reveal that despite this inordinate amount of time in each other’s company, you still know virtually nothing about one another. Phone cases, travel card holders and their Friday outfit choices reveal more about them than you’d think. Colour schemes, patterns and preparedness for the weekend will give you a strong indication of how to succeed. By this logic you’d better up-spec your efforts to avoid morbid disappointment. We’d suggest these: FOR HIM / FOR HER
KEEP IT IN THE FAMILY: A way of saving money for some, a way to inflict further embarrassment on loved ones for others. Ending up with your eldest cousin’s new wife’s son’s girlfriend for Secret Santa is unfortunate; that is, in fact, most unlucky. However, there are way of tackling this. Stay with us, it will be OK. Go for something functional and with universal appeal – and more importantly something you can defend with confidence. However, if this predicament is Dad’s idea of a fun joke, you can’t go wrong by giving a huge framed photo of yourself. It will be hilarious. If not, these will work as well: FOR HIM / FOR HER
CONSPIRACY THEORISTS: Concurrent gift-giving ‘conspiracies’, covert email threads, secret wrapping expeditions and raucous rebellious revelry? This is Secret Santa with a twist. Team up with other members of the group to outdo each other as you all club together to buy the lucky individual their dream present. Works especially well if you’re in a group with various levels of ‘knowing’ one another – web apps are available to manage the fun.
Still unsure what to buy? Head to our Gift Guide to help you hone your present purchases.