What Do People REALLY Want For Christmas


When searching for Christmas ideas for the family, I typed into Google “What do people really want for Christmas” for some much needed advice, I didn’t expect to have a certain ‘oddity‘ as my wife calls it, answered and confirmed for me!

I’ve always thought I was in the vast minority when I say every year (being the selfish sort) that I don’t want food as a Christmas present.


Every year I have to sit there unwrapping a big bar of Dairy Milk and then pretend I’m overawed at such a sumptuous gift…I mean, you can buy such confectionery at any corner shop for a quid, for goodness sake!

Am I selfish? I think not.

They say “it’s the thought that counts…not the gift!” EXACTLY!..and there lies the problem.

How much effort went into the thought of a bar of chocolate being given as a Christmas present? Not a fat lot, I can tell you!

So. I was pleased to read that I’m not alone in my reluctance of receiving such gifts. Over at Inquirer.net a survey was taken on what people really want for Christmas and, importantly, what they DON’T want.

Sitting at the top of the table of things we DO want to open on Christmas morning is good old gadgets with 76% of us yearning to be enthralled by the latest gizmo that you can plug into your laptop or mess about with trying to figure out what it does…no surprise there as I imagine we all love to fiddle about with the latest technological marvel on a Christmas morning. It’s novel, it’s new and it does something useful(ish).

Sitting at the other end of the scale of the list of what we DON’T want for Christmas…in second place with 36%…drum roll please…FOOD!


Gadgets – 76%

Shoes – 34%

Clothes – 30%

Trips – 26%

Books – 22%

Jewelery – 10%

Money – 7%

Sex – 2%


Clothes – 38%

Food – 36%

Toiletries – 26%

Picture frames – 24%

Mugs – 20%

Corporate giveaways – 9%

Towels – 8%

Calendars – 4%

You see…food has over a third of people eagerly wishing it was not given as a Christmas present!

Why go to the bother of wrapping up a Terry’s Chocolate Orange when it can be given freely? My wife takes great pleasure of presenting us, every year, with this small, well wrapped square box with a label and ribbon attached. Is it purely because it’s easy to wrap? Or maybe, she really does think a sickly ball of chocolate is what we’ve been hankering for all year?

Now, don’t get me wrong here…I love a selection box, but just not wrapped up with a label on it wishing me a Merry Christmas! These odd assortments of chocolate should be placed around the tree, or lined up on the food sideboard that manages to get raided a good 3 weeks before Christmas so there’s nothing left for the big day.

ninja_chocolate_wars_christmasOn that matter, my wife will insist on hiding tins of Roses or Quality Street until the very last moment. But every year, my son and myself become Indiana Joneses and set out on a mission to discover the hidden hoard before December even starts. Ninja’s have nothing on us!

We are able to strip away the sell-o-tape around these tins with great skill, then remove the best chocs at will remembering to seal the sell-o-tape neatly back on and return the tins back in the exact same place where we found them.

It’s a game of cat and mouse and one that is always enjoyed by all in our household every Christmas…except the wife of course who on finding out the suspiciously light tins with its contents pilfered can only start training to raise her game the following year.

[alert-note]Another ‘foody’ thing that shouldn’t be wrapped up in shiny Christmas paper is beer. Good Lord, what is going through people’s minds to wrap up beer? This should only be given as a gift from visiting neighbours or friends, unwrapped, and should not, in any shape or form, be termed as a Christmas gift. We should expect, at the very least, a calendar or gift token from friends, but beer? Wrapped?

Don’t do it![/alert-note]

(I will make exception to 25-year old Scottish single malt though…you can wrap that up if you like.)

My sister-in-law is a classic example of a person who wraps booze up for me. She’s under the impression that 4 bottles of real ale, usually named ‘Old Codgers‘ or ‘Bishops Toenail‘, will somehow make me think life is worth living after all!

Every year when a present is passed to me on Christmas morning wrapped up in garish Christmas wrapping, making a clinking noise with bottle caps protruding through the ripped paper, I know it will be from my sister-in-law. “Just what I needed, Pat…how did you guess?” is my usual response delivered with an Oscar winning performance.

what do people really want for christmas beer at christmas
I can’t see any ‘Frogmans Gulp’ here, but that won’t stop my sister-in-law buying these for me at Christmas and expecting me to be super grateful!

Am I ungrateful? Probably. But spending a fiver on a Tesco’s booze deal is not what it’s all about. How much thought went into it and what pleasure does she gain from giving it to me? It supposed to work both ways, y’know!

I secretly think she does it on purpose and has a jolly good laugh about it with her hubby! I’m not her favourite brother-in-law by a long chalk! (Did you see his face, Tony…heh-heh-heh!“)

So, if you’re going to give food or alcohol as a gift this Christmas, think on. Does your uncle really want that giant bar of Aero this year? Does your mum really want that bottle of Babycham?

The facts don’t lie and 36% of us would rather have a useless gadget or even a pair of slippers than a box of cookies or a four-pack of rotgut!

Humbug or Bang on the Money?

I’d like to hear your thoughts below on ‘What do people really want for Christmas‘ in this gift defining subject!