Unwanted presents flood Trade Me

Last updated 10:42 26/12/2012

Is re-gifting okay?

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More than 20,000 items have landed at online auction site Trade Me since lunchtime yesterday, as people look to offload unwanted Christmas presents.

"Regular offenders" that routinely turned up after missing the mark on Christmas Day included over-ambitious purchases of lingerie by both men and women, and items such as books, ties, handbags and kitchen appliances, spokesman Paul Ford said.

"Yesterday most of us will have received at least one gift that made us groan inwardly, but if you can't exchange it then selling it to someone who genuinely wants it is often a better option than hiding it in the back of the wardrobe, sending it off to the dump, or awkwardly passing it on at Christmas next year."

Sellers could also be anonymous on Trade Me, as long as the people who gave them presents did not know their member name.

A British poll had named the Fifty Shades of Grey book trilogy as the least popular Christmas gift, followed by Olympics and weight loss DVDs, and onesie jumpsuits.

 "We'll be keeping a close eye out for these items on Trade Me over the next few days, as they sound like decent contenders for the Kiwi 'not hot' list too," Ford said.

While a social taboo about recycling unwanted presents remained, research from the London Business School had found it was felt more keenly by gift receivers than givers.

"Receivers often over-estimate how offensive regifting is to the initial giver," Ford said.

Tips for sellers included having the words "unwanted gift" in listings, with that being one of the top searches onsite last December.

Handmade items should not be sold, particularly if someone's name was carved, embroidered or etched on.

And only brand new items should be sold, with the packaging as intact as possible.

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