Are you looking for new ideas to spice up a gift exchange at your office Christmas party?
We thought so!
Here’s a few we have compiled that’ll add excitement to the traditional Kris Kringle game this year.
Secret Casino Santa
This game comes with an interesting twist – Who will win all the money in the pot? Who will win all the gifts? And who will play it safe?
How to play: Everyone participating buys a gift for an agreed amount ($15-20) and then an agreed amount is also put into a money pot ($5-10). Names are drawn from a hat and then you can choose three options.
Option 1: Choose a gift.
Option 2: Do not choose a gift and put your name down to win the money in the pot.
Option 3: Put your name down to win all the gifts of those who went for option 2.
Play Holiday Trivia
This game is for those who love to play a little bit of trivia with the prizes being a surprise gift.
How to play: Everyone buys a gift and puts it in the middle of the table. The game organiser compiles a list of Christmas trivia, (for example can you name all of Santa’s reindeer?) and reads out the questions. Whoever answers the question first gets to pick a present and the game continues. At the end of the game, the organiser can choose the last present or decide to steal someone else’s!
A gift auction is perfect for bigger workplaces where not everybody knows each other and buying gifts for someone can be a little tricky!
How to play: Have each participant buy a gift of an agreed price that will be put on display in the office. Then, each person will be assigned a certain number of points (100 usually works) to bid on the gifts they like the best. The auction will keep running until each participant has used up all their points and everyone wins a gift. This game can also be played with a Silent Auction where bids are placed into a box and checked for a winner afterward.
Choose your own theme
Choose a theme for the gift exchange makes shopping for a present a little more interesting!
How to play: Participants decide on a gift theme that everyone has to follow. For example, if you choose blue, all the gifts have to fit the theme of blue. The game can either be played by the traditional Kris Kringle rules or everyone puts their gift on a table and one by one a gift is chosen.
Thieving Secret Santa
(aka Dirty Santa, The Grinch Game, White Elephant gift exchange)
Perfect for those with a mischievous side because they can steal an awesome gift from one another!
How to play: Each participating person buys a gift for an agreed amount and puts in the middle of a table. Then players take turns by pulling names out of a hat to either choose a gift from the table or steal someone else’s gift. The game keeps going until all the gifts from the table are unwrapped and everyone has something. If someone steals from you, you can either pick a new gift from the table or steal someone else’s.
Secret Santa over several days
This variation is great for smaller workplaces because it means the Christmas cheer can be spread over a week with small, random gifts delivered daily!
How to play: Each person pulls a name out of a hat to determine their Secret Santa. With this variation, the gift giving occurs over several days in which a small creative gift is delivered secretly. Ideas could be a poem, chocolates, a little piece of art, stationery etc. On the last day of the game, the gift will reveal the identity of the Secret Santa by leaving a note that implies the person knows who the gift giver is.
Or the workplace can get together at a certain time and everyone can hide their gifts leaving clues to where it is located with the name of the Secret Santa on it.
Dutch Kris Kringle
This game originates from the Dutch Kris Kringle and is a fun game for those who like to give clues to make the gift giving a little bit more of a challenge!
How to play: Each person pulls a name from a hat to determine who they are giving a gift to. The tradition here is to write a verse and attach it to the gift, signing it with ‘Sinterklass’. Then when giving the gift, conceal it in a big box if it is a small gift or hide it somewhere in the workplace and leave clues for the person to find it.