4 Ways to Get Rid of a Bad Gift (Besides Returning It)

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NEW YORK (MainStreet) — You don’t have to brave the crowded malls or wait until June to get rid of that leg lamp your Uncle Joe thought would look great in your living room – consumers have other options when it comes to returning unwanted Christmas gifts. Here are some ways to skip the return line.

Put It on eBay

Ebay (Stock Quote: EBAY) is the perfect place to find takers for that one gift you’re sure no one would ever want to buy. Case in point: We found plenty of listings for ugly Christmas sweaters that actually had bids on them. You can also hold on to some of your unwanted gifts and sell them during your annual spring garage sale or try to unload them at a local pawn shop.

Donate It to a Local School

Local schools or nonprofits are always looking for items of all shapes and sizes to auction off at their fundraisers, so you may want to call a few organizations and ask when their next tricky tray or card party is scheduled.

Re-Gift It

Consider this either an early start on next year’s holiday shopping (the most terrible gifts can be used during your annual office “white elephant” party) or use the gift as a backup in case someone you didn’t include on your shopping list shows up at your house with a post-Christmas gift. 

Negotiate a Trade


Chances are, someone you know also has a gift they’re trying to get rid of, so don’t be shy about asking close friends which items they received over the holidays that they have no use for.  If it sounds like a product you can use, offer your own bad gift in exchange.

Do you still think a trip to the mall is your best bet for getting rid of a gift you don’t want? If so, check out MainStreet’s article on how to return holiday gifts without the hassle.

—Jeanine Skowronski is staff reporter for MainStreet. You can reach her by email at Skowronski.jeanine@thestreet.com, or follow her on Twitter at @JeanineSko.

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