Here’s 5 cheap gift ideas for the dreaded office Secret Santa.

We’re well and truly into December, and as we creep ever closer to the festive day wondering where this year has gone (this also accounts for 80% of December office small talk) the fact finally hits us. Michael Bublé has now defrosted. Oh, and the obligatory office Secret Santa is upon us. 

For most people this event can be hard to distance from, and as such a testing time. What if I get the person no one really talks to/knows/is always standing next to the printer aka ‘That guy’? What if I get a close colleague and don’t deliver? Worse, what if I get the boss and embarrass myself? You’re not alone.

But fear not. Here’s 5 ideas to get you started:

1. Mini Desk Sports. 

A Secret Santa staple. Although abandoned/destroyed/lost (How?!) By Mid-Late February, this serves a low risk, budget friendly, widely acceptable office present. Mini Golf, Mini Pool, Mini Ping Pong, Basketball, you name it. They have it in mini. Take your pick and a deep exhale, you’re safe for another year.

2. Water Bottle/Coffee Mug. 

Another highly trusted and safe selection amongst the secret santa community. Don’t know a colleague that well/in the slightest/do they even work here? Go for the Bottle/Mug. The beauty with these is they usually have some handy quotes written somewhere, making you look witty as for choosing it, and the recipient feel like you’ve known them forever. Smile smugly as they unwrap, dab, then moonwalk out the building. You’re safe for another year.

3. Joke Books/How To Books

Arguably one of the more risqué office Secret Santa gifts, but if executed correctly goes down a treat. Know your audience with this one. Are they the office clown? Is there good banter there? Do they have a hobby outside work? A passion/interest? This is one to earn maximum brownie points and solidify key office allies moving forward. Good luck and if it gets the coveted office laugh, lap it up. You’re safe for another year.

4. Scratch Maps/Diaries

Probably for the more sensitive, deeper thinkers amongst your office. The great thing about these is that although widely generic and low budget, it’ll still be considered thoughtful by your recipient. Although beware when years later you’re emailed a picture of your now ex-colleague standing on top a Peruvian mountain alongside a confused local, dressed in elephant pants and last months full moon paint with the message, ‘One more off the scratch map. Hope all’s well mate’. You only have yourself and that damn good gift to blame. But alas, you’re safe for another year.

5. Alcohol

This gift idea must be as old as Secret Santa itself. The ultimate ‘I had 2 weeks and yet I’ve somehow managed to leave it till the last 20 minutes’ gift. Though despite all this, unless you work in a nunnery/AlcoholicsAnonymous, there’s not an awful lot that can go wrong here. Find out what your colleagues Alcohol of choice is and race down to your local. Two brown paper bags (your server will understand the gravity of the situation) either side will suffice as wrapping paper. Bonus points here if you manage to swig some after if your office has a party organised. Raise a glass, you’re safe for another year.

So there we have it. 5 office Secret Santa ideas to help smooth out one of the low key most stressful day of the year. Stay safe fellow corporates, until next year. 

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