• The top gifts that people would be annoyed at receiving as a surprise for Christmas include self-help books, clothes airers, gym membership, fitness DVDs and anti-ageing cream

  • Almost half (48 per cent) of Brits already know some or all of the gifts they'll be receiving this festive season

  • But more than three quarters (78 per cent) say that they still like or love surprise gifts

MILTON KEYNES, England, Dec. 1, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- New research* commissioned by top 10 shopping destination, centre:mk, has revealed what's on the naughty and nice lists when it comes to gift-giving this Christmas. The top presents respondents would be annoyed to receive as a surprise include gym membership, self-help books, clothes airers, anti-ageing cream and fitness DVDs.

With Christmas just around the corner, many of us are already anticipating the feeling of receiving unwanted festive surprise gifts. It's no wonder that almost half of us (48 per cent) already know what we're set to receive this year from writing lists (15 per cent), dropping hints (17 per cent) and 36 per cent of 18-24 year olds even looking for gifts hidden in their homes to avoid any unwelcome surprises.

Many respondents also dislike being given exercise-themed gifts, saying they'd be annoyed to receive fitness DVDs, weighing scales, dieting cookbooks and gym memberships. Notably, women are more likely than men to drop hints to avoid receiving gifts they don't want; of those who said they always drop hints, 58 per cent were female.

Lots of us are also finding unique ways to deal with receiving unwelcome gifts, including regifting (35 per cent), putting them in a cupboard out of sight (29 per cent), and taking it to a charity shop (13 per cent). All of this can be avoided if the recipient went shopping with someone else while they bought their gift, just as 27 per cent of those surveyed do. 

When buying gifts, people will most commonly ask their loved one what they need (21 per cent), while 19 per cent will buy practical gifts that they know they will use. This practical gifting is more common with the older generation, with 62 per cent of over 65s saying they prefer to receive gifts they need, compared to 41 per cent of 18-24 year olds. Shopping vouchers and winter warmers like jumpers, loungewear and slippers are topping the practical shopping list this festive season.

Nonetheless, surprise gifts are still a popular choice, with 78 per cent saying they love or like them and 35 per cent of people saying that surprise gifts show how much someone knows another person.

Kim Priest, head of marketing at centre:mk, said: "We've all been there when we've opened a gift we weren't expecting! We may be feeling that practical is best this Christmas, but in reality we all want that nice surprise with a little bit of luxury. Traditional winter warmers, beauty treatments, jewellery and gift vouchers ensure practicality and luxury can go hand in hand, with centre:mk's retailers offering many gifts that are as useful as they are enjoyable!"

The top 20 gifts that people would be annoyed at receiving as a surprise for Christmas are:

1.  Fitness DVD
2.  Gym membership
3.  Ironing board
4.  Self-help book
5.  Dieting cookbook
6.  Iron
7.  Exercise equipment
8.  Clothes airer
9.  Saucepan set
10.  Placemats
11.  Exercise clothing
12.  Weighing scales
13.  Anti-ageing cream
14.  Lawn mower
15.  Paper shredder
16.  Cutlery
17.  Vacuum
18.  Kettle
19.  Onesie
20.  Kitchen apron

*2,359 UK adults were surveyed by Emotional Logic, November 2022

Notes to editors

About centre:mk:

centre:mk is one of the top 10 shopping destinations in the UK (released by GlobalData), located 30 minutes from London, attracting over 24 million guest visits each year.

Key facts:

  • centre:mk is a Grade II listed building in Milton Keynes

  • It spans 1.3 million sq. ft. of prime retail space with stores hosting a range of brands including; All Saints, Michael Kors, Charlotte Tilbury, MAC, Urban Decay, Kurt Geiger, Hobbs, Jaeger and thousands more brands

  • The tenant line up boasts that of John Lewis, Marks and Spencer, Next and River Island

  • centre:mk sees a 63% ABC1 shopper classification.

  • Milton Keynes is one of the fastest growing cities in the UK and the 6th most affluent catchment areas in the country.


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