Money & Career

Six gift-giving etiquette dos and don'ts

How to navigate the sometimes awkward world of gifts when it comes to work, family and friends

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For the boss
If you feel a gift is appropriate, the tradition of chipping in for a group purchase will alleviate any pressure and keep your spending curbed.

Don’t: Get anything too intimate. Clothing, perfume or anything extravagant is a no-no.

For the in-laws
Pay attention to their interests. If your mom-in-law has hinted that she’d like to take up golf, give her a book or a magazine subscription that relates to it.

Don’t: Give a vacuum cleaner. “This is what I think you need”  can come across as passive-aggressive.

For the hostess
Bring a small gift of wine, flowers or dessert when you’re invited to dinner. We love the idea of signing your wine bottle in gold ink or adding a nice card to a tin of cookies!

Don’t: Sweat it if you arrive empty-handed at a cocktail party. Experts agree a gift isn’t always necessary.