It’s almost that time of year again, when we don our paper party hats and wolf down as many mince pies as our waistbands will allow. Christmas is coming! 

If you’re playing Secret Santa this year with friends or coworkers, chances are you want to get them something they will actually like. A boring gift that’s going to sit at the back of the cupboard until they next move house is not the one. According to a recent survey, 2.5 million workplace Secret Santa gifts end up in the bin, so to avoid that disaster, we’ve put together a not-so-secret guide to playing Secret Santa at Christmas. 

How does Secret Santa work? 

Secret Santa is a gift exchange game that has become increasingly popular for offices, workplaces and pre-Christmas get-togethers with friends. The idea is that everybody gets a gift, without everybody having to shell out for multiple gifts. 

How it works: A few weeks before the festivities, everybody should put their name into a hat (or an online generator for those who don’t like the personal touch!) Everyone will pick a name at random and will have to buy a gift for the person chosen. To keep things fair, there’s normally a price limit set on gifts – nobody likes a show-off, but equally, nobody wants to receive a cheapskate’s offering. Also, if the name of the game hasn’t already given it away, the idea is to keep your selection a secret. 

When it comes to distributing the gifts, everyone should wrap their Secret Santa gift, labelled with the recipient’s name, but not the giver’s name. Put the gifts in one pile to keep things anonymous, and when it’s time to open them, each recipient will get a chance to guess who chose their gift for them. In our experience, hardly anybody ever gets it right. If you’re the ‘Santa’ that nobody guesses, it’s up to you to tell them, although we like to keep people guessing for ages. 

What to get for Secret Santa 

This will really depend on who you are playing with. If you’re a close group of best friends, you’ll have a much better chance of getting them something they love. If you’re playing with colleagues, you might get stuck with Nigel from accounts, who to this day you’ve never even said hello to. If that’s the case, we’re very sorry, but this funny, offensive gift mug might break the ice. Notice we said ‘might’... 

If you’re looking for Secret Santa inspiration, look no further. 

Funny Secret Santa gift ideas for work 

Buying a Secret Santa gift for colleagues can be a bit of a minefield if you don’t know their hobbies or interests, so why not opt for a funny gift mug to make them laugh in the office? Pick your favourite from any of these: 

Secret Santa gifts for her 

Secret Santa gifts for men 

Here’s our pick of top Secret Santa gift mugs for men: 

Secret Santa gift ideas for doctors

The rules of Secret Santa

  • Always be a good sport – don’t moan if you do get poor Nigel from accounts, use it as an opportunity to ask him what he’s into. But if he is into weird stuff, back away slowly… 

  • Keep it a secret! Keep your chosen gift recipient to yourself, so you don’t spoil the surprise. You might not enjoy Secret Santa, but some people do – and they will remember that you blabbed.

  • Stick to the budget. 

  • Depending on the recipient you get, choose to be cautious (say it’s your boss) or push the boundaries if you get your best workmate. It’s usually best to steer clear of anything political, but if you know that they hate the Tories, this funny ‘Tories are scum’ gift mug will go down a treat!

Whoever you get for Secret Santa, we have a selection of funny gift mugs to suit most tastes. Make them laugh this Christmas! 

And if you need a Secret Santa card to give alongside your gift, they might enjoy this funny ‘Obligatory Secret Santa Card’.

Funny Secret Santa card

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