Party Gift Exchange Games

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Party Gift Exchange Games are very popular right now, and with good reason, because they are so much fun!!

These games can take the place of gift exchanges in large families, and are a fun way to open presents with a group of people at a party, even if they don't know each other.

Here are some gift exchange parties that I've attended in recent years...

White Elephant Gift Exchange

The White Elephant Gift Exchange is a great, great time. Everyone brings a White Elephant Gift to the party, wrapped, and sets it in the middle of the room. Everyone who brought a gift can play. Let each person draw a number, and that will be the order in which they will get a turn.

Person #1 gets to pick a gift and open it. Next, Person #2 can steal Person #1's gift, or select another from the pile to open it. Person #3 can steal Person #1 or Person #2's gift, and so on. If you gift is stolen, you get to select another from the pile (or steal from someone else). No gift can be stolen more than three times, at which point it is "frozen". At the end, person #1 gets to steal any gift that isn't "frozen", and exchange with the person he/she steals from.

What is a White Elephant Gift? Well, it depends, and you may want to check with your host/hostess. Sometimes a White Elephant Gift is a gag gift. One year I brought a backwards clock and it was the hit of the party. But I've brought a gag gift before (a bag of yarn hair ribbons) when everyone else just brought a random, but nice gift. And sometimes people bring an old item from home, and basically "re-gift" it.

Some of my favorite White Elephant Gifts that I've seen (so I guess these are "white elephant gift suggestions") have been...

  • CD by a group that NO ONE would want
  • old bathroom shelves
  • Wine bottle, empty
  • bag of dog food
  • a very ugly piece of clothing 
  • I like to keep my eyes open for unusual items all year long!

    Ornament Exchange

    Every year I love to go to an Ornament Exchange at Christmas time.

    We play this party gift exchange game the same way the White Elephant Exchange listed above, however we do it with beautiful ornaments.

    It is amazing how ruthless people can get over an ornament!

    It is alot of fun too, and I have many beautiful and unique ornaments on my Christmas tree thanks to this annual event.

    Cookie Exchange

    Another fun event is having a cookie exchange. Not really a party gift exchange game where people steal from each other, but rather it is a party where everyone makes a large batch of their favorite cookies.

    You set them all out on a table, and everyone can pick up what cookies they wish to take back home.

    Hopefully you go home with the same number of cookies you came with, but now you have a yummy assortment!!

    It is even better if everyone brings their recipes so you can make more at home of your favorites. 

    Other Party Gift Exchange Games

    A visitor told me about their fun gift exchange game. They drew numbers for each person, and then everyone picked a gift and they went around the room opening them. No one was allowed to "steal" a gift. Then, after everyone had opened a present, they went around the circle, stealing from each other. Normally, you open your gift and if you like it hope no one steals it, but if you are one of the early numbers, you don't have too many gifts to pick from to steal. This fixes it!

    What else can you exchange other than ornaments, white elephant gifts and cookies? Visitor ideas for items for party gift exchange games include fun socks and gift cards. Some great ideas for gift exchange party games have come from our visitors, people just like you. Here are a few...

  • Cookie Exchange

  • Secret Santa Gift Exchange

  • Hickey Christmas

  • Christmas Gift Exchange Game

  • White Elephant Gift Exchange

  • Cheap Christmas Game Tradition

  • Ornament Exchange Party
  • Do you have any to add to our list?

  • Do you have a great easy party idea or game?

    Share your great ideas!

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