Deck the halls with re-gifts
Expect to see more recycled gifts under the tree this year, survey finds.
Do I feel guilty about regifting? A little. But my dad won't care. And my friend probably won't either. It's going to a good home. And, I admit, I am relieved at having one less present to buy this holiday.
More Americans are doing the same thing, a new survey shows. About 36% of us plan to recycle a gift this year, up from 31% last year and 24% in 2007, according to Consumer Reports.
I suspect the percentage is higher than that, since some people probably won't admit to regifting.
So is it OK to regift? Under the right circumstances, why not? MSN's MP Dunleavy lists some smart rules for recycling gifts. Take the time to rewrap them, she writes, and don't spoil the occasion by admitting that they are recycled. Don't regift anything you've already used, and don't regift cheeseball things like fruitcake, pens or extinct bath products.
The Consumer Reports poll also found that a third of Americans plan to spend less this year than last year, while about half plan to spend the same amount, according to the Los Angeles Times.
And people are cutting back on overall holiday spending, including plane flights and decorations. About two-thirds of the people polled said they would spend less overall.
So I've come clean and disclosed my regifting plans. What about you guys? What are you thinking about recycling?
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ABOUT SMART SPENDING
Editor Bev O'Shea lives and works in the foothills of the Appalachians. A former copy editor for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Orlando Sentinel, she joined MSN Money in 2007. She's a fan of sunsets, college football and free shipping, among other things.
Having worked as a writer, reporter and editor for more than 25 years, Editor Julie Tilsner is the sort of person who can't help but correct grammar in Facebook postings and on billboards. She's written for BusinessWeek, the Los Angeles Times, Parenting, Redbook, AOL and others. She lives in Los Angeles County with her family and loves to drink wine and practice yoga, although not generally at the same time.
A writer for MSN Money since January 2007, Donna Freedman won regional and national prizes during an 18-year newspaper career and earned a college degree in midlife without taking out student loans. She also writes about smart money tactics for magazines and on her own site, Surviving and Thriving.
Mitch Lipka has been warning people about scams and shining light on questionable business practices for more than 20 years. Mitch, the consumer columnist for The Boston Globe, has also been a reporter and editor at The Philadelphia Inquirer, Consumer Reports, South Florida Sun-Sentinel and AOL. He won the 2010 New York Press Club award for best consumer reporting online and was honored in 2011 for his reporting on child product safety.
Marilyn Lewis is an award-winning writer with a passion for getting readers clear, straight information that helps them stay out of financial trouble. A former reporter for The San Jose Mercury News, she works from her home in Port Townsend, Wash. Contact her at MarilynLewis@Outlook.com.
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