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The Dilemma of Regifting

By Joseph D’Andrea

One of the most exciting parts of the holiday season is receiving gifts and even though most of the time, the gifts you get may be welcomed, other times, you may ask yourself: “did I unwrap the wrong box?” 

If you’re like me, you have some relatives who will ask what you want and then give you something completely different — without a gift receipt, to top it off. At that point, what else is there to do? You can bring it to the store to get credit but they may have bought it when it was on clearance. And if they did, you’ve already made a trip out to the store, wasting even more time.

To many, the gift-giving season is full of joy and surprises, but to some, surprises aren’t always received well. Photo from Stocksnap

Sometimes, a last resort is giving your unwanted gift to someone who may appreciate it more than you is the best option. However, word can get around and you don’t want to be known as the person who both gave someone a gift you didn’t want and also as someone who tossed aside what you were given. 

Even the person who gifted you the item can’t find out about the regiting, you still may have some guilt attached to it. A possible alternative could also be to donate your gift and make the most out of the giving season.

For those who wish to channel the spirit of giving in a different way, an alternative to regifting is to consider donating the unwanted item. The holiday season is a time of heightened charitable efforts, and many organizations welcome contributions of gently used items. By donating, individuals can transform their unwanted gifts into meaningful contributions, fostering a sense of goodwill and community spirit.

A poll put out by The Delphian to Adelphi students found that 58% of participants believe that it’s acceptable to rregift, while the remaining 42% are opposed to it.

“Regifting is awful,” said freshman communications major Ava Diaz. “It takes away the value of the gift that was originally given. I can’t imagine buying something special for someone and finding out they decided to just regift it to someone else.”

The holiday season is undoubtedly a time for joy and generosity, but let's face it — not every gift hits the mark. Those moments of unwrapping a present only to discover it's not quite what you had in mind can be both disappointing and confusing. Regifting can be a solution in these cases but it can also come its share of social anxieties.


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