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Secret Santa Gift Ideas for Every Budget

Office Secret Santa exchanges have begun to receive some controversial press of late. A recent study from Jobsite found that these benevolent workplace gift swaps could be bringing an unnecessary level of stress to younger members of the workforce. It also showed that nearly one in five millennial staff members felt “judged on the level of their expenditure” on gifts, even though Secret Santa swaps are, by their very nature, anonymous.

The key for any office is to set a budget for any gift given that doesn’t leave anyone feeling judged or stingy. However, how much you agree to spend on each other will ultimately depend on what type of company you work for, with higher budgets more likely for bigger businesses. That doesn’t necessarily mean that those at smaller companies, or on lower salaries, will be reduced to stocking-filler territory, though—they’ll just need to get more creative.

With that in mind, here are some of the best Secret Santa gifts to get your colleagues, whatever your budget..

[Please note: all prices are correct at time of publication.]

£20 and up

Festive cheesebox (from £35)

Nothing makes for a cool Yule like a good quality cheese platter, and The Cheese Geek, who specialise in cheese subscription boxes, know that better than most. Their Christmas cheese selection now includes one-off boxes—as well as gift cards—which provide a mix of different seasonal favourites from around the world. Even though you won’t necessarily be able to take the credit if you want to keep your Santadom secret, a Christmas cheesebox will be the gift that keeps on giving.

Cards Against Humanity (£25)

If you’ve drawn a coworker with a sick sense of humour, this might be the ideal gift! “A party game for horrible people”, runs the tagline of this ever-popular card game, and we’d be hard-pressed to argue. Definitely one to play around the conference table towards the end of the staff Christmas party if you want to see how your colleagues’ minds really work.

Scratch Map of the World (£22.95)

If you picked a colleague who’s a keen traveler, they’ll love being able to log everywhere they’ve ever been on a fancy map of the world. Developed by Luckies, the Scratch Map lets you scratch off the countries you’ve visited, uncovering a beautiful rainbow of colour underneath the gold foil.

£10 to £20

Flavoured coffee selection (£17.50)

If you draw one of your colleagues who isn’t quite themselves until they’ve had their first (or second, or third) coffee of the day, there are plenty of caffeinated goodies in this price bracket to suit even the pickiest person. We’re pretty smitten with this selection of flavoured coffees from Debenhams, individually served in handy, ready-to-drink, takeaway-style mugs.

That’s So 90s Quiz Game (£17.50)

As we come to the end of the decade in which the nineties came back hard, there’s no better way to reward your millennial colleagues than this retro quiz. It doesn’t matter if they prefer boybands to grunge, or Friends over the Fresh Prince—this will give them the chance to put their knowledge of the end of the century to the test. And for once, there’ll be no shame if they find themselves Clueless…

USB Mixtape (£12.99)

For those who work with someone who knows their Bon Iver from their Bon Jovi, chances are they’ll be the kind of music nerd who shuns Spotify, pining for the old days of analogue. While they might not see it as a match for the hours they used to spend poised over the pause button, this USB mixtape can let them store over 200 songs in one handy package, letting them curate their own playlist for the days when they finally get to take over the office Bluetooth speaker.

£10 and under

Psycho Juice Hot Sauce Gift Pack (£9.95)

Sriracha has become one of the most popular condiments over the last five years, and by this point, no self-respecting office should be without a bottle. But if you’ve got a colleague who keeps hogging the hot stuff, they might appreciate this handy selection of four bottles of seriously spicy sauce, arranged in heat-order, and each made from a different type of chilli.

Shaving Apron (£8)

An idea so useful we’re amazed no one had thought of it sooner. For the grizzly man of your workplace, this gift goes one step further than your run-of-the-mill beard oil kit, by offering an easy way for him to trim his beard without any of the mess. All he needs to do is attach the shaving apron around his neck, then fasten the other side to the mirror, and presto shavo!

Festive Socks (£4.93)

The ultimate stocking stuffer, the nightmare gift that everyone will be secretly grateful for come January, nothing says Secret Santa like a pair of socks. Decorated with a picture of a puppy in a pair of antlers, this cute pair is sure to hit the mark come the office Christmas do.