Thanks for the great response regarding my last gifting tip “Open Presents Later.” I got a few follow-up questions about how to pull it off as well as how to handle pushy guests who want you to open their present during the party. Here are some more pointers:
- Have a table set up to gather the gifts, but keep it out of the center of the party. The party should be the focus, not the presents. The theory of “out of sight, out of mind” works very well for this purpose.
- If a guest asks when you are going to open presents, explain with a smile that you’re going to do it later, after the guests have gone, because you want to focus on the party.
- Sometimes you may have an insistent (or pushy) guest who is stuck on the old way of doing things. You could say something like, “I’m trying something different this time.” Especially in the case of a child’s party, you can explain that it’s easier for the child to open gifts without a crowd and at his/her own pace.
- Perhaps it’s a family member who is insisting and you don’t want to offend? How about suggesting that they stay after the other party guests have gone and then open their gift (but not all of the others). It’s a friendly compromise.
- Remember that a timely thank you note is absolutely a must! Each gift should be acknowledged as soon as possible.
It’s never too late to start a new tradition. I think you’ll find that opening presents later is a great piece of gifting etiquette to adopt at your next party.