A Sweater or Book Under the Christmas Tree May Disappoint: Czech Holiday Shopping Insights

Czech citizens spent half a billion crowns last year on unwanted Christmas gifts, according to a new survey by Slevomat in collaboration with Behavio Labs. The least appreciated gifts were sweaters and bathroom accessories. Conversely, 67 percent said they prefer cash in an envelope this year.

One in three Czechs found at least one unwanted gift under the Christmas tree last year. The most dissatisfied were younger people, ages 25 to 34. More than a third of the gift recipients stated that the gifts that disappointed them the most were worth up to 500 crowns.

The traditional soft gifts, often pieces of clothing like socks or sweaters, topped the list of unwanted items, followed closely by hard gifts, such as books or electronics. “The worst gifts people often mentioned are bath accessories, funny gifts, perfumes or sweaters,” says Ladislav Veselý, director of Slevomat.

Interestingly, the survey also revealed that 75 percent of respondents would like to receive handmade gifts, 67 percent would appreciate an envelope with cash, and 63 percent would enjoy a voucher for an experience. These could include vouchers for a holiday stay, wellness treatments, or adrenaline experiences like a skid school or shooting range.

Most recipients do not admit their disappointment to avoid offending the gift-giver. More than half of the people act as if nothing happened after receiving an unsuitable gift; two out of five pretend to be happy, but only six percent of Czechs openly admit their disappointment. While 40 percent of the recipients hide the unwanted gift after unwrapping, every fourth Czech subsequently gives the gift to someone else. Only one person out of a hundred returns the received item to the store.