How to RecycleUnwanted Christmas Gifts

by Paula Fenton (Newcastle, U.K.)

How Do I Recycle These ???

How Do I Recycle These ???

Christmas as we all know is a time of giving, sharing and showing appreciation for everyone surrounding us. It’s also the time of year when we try to be really selfless benevolent and the easiest way to do that is by giving each other gifts. There is nothing wrong with that, obviously. But how many of the gifts we receive each year were ones we actually wanted or stuff that really suited us?.Most novelty gifts we receive like funny hats, ties or underwear will be hilarious for a day or so, but will get forgotten after a couple of weeks. That Santa hat with the words “Merry Xmas” will not be suitable anymore, after Boxing Day is done. Not to mention all the cliché mugs, photo frames, shirts, socks, handkerchiefs, scented candles and other gift items we receive every year!.Therefore, as Christmas is always time of excess, it also means that it is a time of waste. Although that may be the case, most people find it impolite to refuse gifts. So what other options do we have to de-clutter our homes of unwanted presents after the holidays?.To start, we could return or exchange our unwanted gifts at the shops. If you know the shop they were bought from or if you have the receipt, that would be helpful.Many shops will accept returns & issue “gift receipts”, which can be redeemed for goods at a later date. This is really great because you are then not under any pressure to make instant & possibly wrong decisions!.You can also return CD’s, DVD’s or books to the shops and exchange them for something that is suited more to your taste. With returns, though, you have to remember to do this quickly as possible as most shops only give between 10 to 14 days for you to do this. Act quickly, just in case your gift giver bought the item way before the rush.

If you do not want to return your unwanted gift to the shops, another great way to “recycle” it then is by giving it to a charity shop which will enable the charity shop to earn money to help others & the new recipient of the unwanted Christmas gift may also enjoy it!.Another way to recycle unwanted Christmas gifts is by making money out from them. You can set up an account at an online auction site such as Ebay and sell your unwanted gifts through there. It is simple enough to do, as long as you have successfully set up a seller account. Another idea (if you have enough unwanted gifts) would be to stand at a car boot sale, and hopefully by pricing your stuff sensibly, you can easily convert it into cash!.Re-gifting is also a good way to recycle unwanted Christmas gifts. All you have to do is save the present, keep it sealed or unused and then re-wrap it as a gift for someone’s birthday or some other occasion after the holidays are over.Of course, you need to take note of who has given you the gift. Mistakenly giving the gift back to your giver on his/her birthday will make things extremely awkward between the two of you(if not quite amusing!).To avoid this entirely, make sure that you give your gift to someone who your giver does not know personally or someone he/she rarely meets. These are just a few ideas of how to Recycle unwanted Christmas gifts, go on, be creative & don’t just stuff them into the loft, or back of a drawer!!.


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