Christmas is about family and fun, but it is also about gifts. Sometimes families do not give great gifts. Its inevitable that at some point this season you will receive a gift that you did not ask for, that is not you, or that is a re-gift or hand me down. When this happens you need to make sure to thank the giver because the thought is what counts. While that may be true, some people do not put a lot of thought into gifts. When that happens, you need to be happy and accept the gift with manners.

7 good gift-opening manners:

1. Contact the giver when a gift arrives

If you receive a gift in the mail and do not want to open it until Christmas morning, then contact the sender and let them know the gift has arrived. People want to know that the gifts they give arrive safely and that it arrived at all. Letting the sender know it got there is a type of thank you in itself, but it will also give the sender peace of mind that everything worked out as planned.

2. Use technology to say thanks

When a gift giver is in another state or even another country, our new technology is a great way to reduce that distance. Set up a time to Skype, FaceTime, or a simple phone call while opening the gift the sender gave. This will allow them to see you or the kids open the gift in real time. It is a special treat and an instant ‘thank you’ when the sender gets to see the faces and expressions of the recipient as they open their gift. If you can’t set up a call, then take pictures or video and text or post them within the hour of opening gifts. By doing this you are still in the moment and it will have the same gravitas as a direct interactive video call.

3. Open the card first

Taking time to read the card is important as it gives credence to the idea that ‘it’s the thought that counts.’ Thank the giver while you open the card and not while opening the gift. It shows you care about the giver and not the gift. It lets the giver know exactly what you are thankful for.

4. Children should unwrap all their gifts before playing

Christmas can be over load for kids and they can be easily distracted by that one gift Santa said he would bring. When kids focus on one item they do not give respect or thanks to the others that they were given or to the people who gave them. Let the kids open all the gifts before playing with one particular item to spread the love and thanks.

5. Never ask where your gift came from

This simple question means a lot. It means you don’t like the gift and you are looking for where you can return it. You don’t need to say anything else because your giver will make up their own reason. That’s never good. Instead, wait a few days, then ask where the gift came from. The separated time will allow any inferred ideas or emotions subside. Remember, always be respectful of someone else’s feelings and intentions. It will make for a happier holiday.

6. Always get a gift receipt

When you give a gift, always give a gift receipt. This will let a recipient know where the gift came from and make it easy for the recipient to return it if they do not like it. This removes any kind of awkward conversation and keeps feelings happy.

7. Not that box

Never put a gift in a box that has the name of a different store than the store where you bought the gift. When people see a tiffany blue box, but it has a candy necklace inside, you are sure to disappoint the recipient, unless you mean it as a joke and the gift recipient knows you mean it that way.

Do you have a great tip when it comes to manners? Leave a post below to let everyone know or tell us your story.

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