How To Set Up The Perfect Secret Santa Event

In concept Secret Santa is a pretty simple event to host, everybody is assigned anonymously to give another participant a gift. Of course there can be a hiccup here or there that can can really bring down the holiday spirit. So, let's see what can be done to ensure your Secret Santa event goes off without a hitch.


Distribution of Names:

The tried and true method of assigning secret Santa is to have everyone write their name on a slip and toss them in a hat or our sidekick zipper bag to be drawn by each potential Santa to see who they’ll be treating this year.

If you can get everybody participating in the same room, this method works well enough save for the awkward moment when someone draws their own name and has to reveal and redraw. Another nice tip for this step is to include a little personal interests and hobbies on the name slip so that who ever gets to be your Santa has a clue of what to get you.

If you can’t get everyone into the same room, then there are plenty of websites like Elfster which allow you to list out names and emails on the service and each Santa will get an email with who their recipient is. This of course could allow people from out of town to participate, which means you might want to include a master list of addresses so the gifts can all get where they need. And while we’re being friendly to digital aids, maybe encourage everyone to have an Amazon wishlist of items that could be browsed.


Drawing out the rules:

There are always a few good ground rules to be set at the start depending on how personal the group is. The most common of which is to set a price limit on gifts that everyone can easily afford to help make sure some Super Santa doesn’t blow everyone out and set a air of jealousy around the Christmas tree. Another good idea or ground rule is to establish a theme or if gag gifts should be encouraged, especially if kids might be around or participating there are certainly some jokes that don’t need to be opened in many groups.


Planning out the exchange party:

This can take place anywhere that is convenient for the group, even over a Skype conference if that’s the only way to get everyone together. Wherever you do it, it’s a good idea to have it include some festive decorations to help set the mood, and possibly start out the mood of giving with a potluck. Any way you do it, as long as everyone follows the rules and gives from their heart, then it’s certain to be a wonderful festivity to end the year with.

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