One of my favorite holiday traditions is thinking of an unexpected prank gift to give to my younger cousins. Prank gifts are tricky because you don’t want to spend a lot of money on something you know the recipient does not want to keep.
A few years ago, I came across a website called de-gifting.com. This website helps you give the gift of nothing. All you have to do is pick a few options from a menu of drop down lists, and de-gifting.com prepares a certificate that you can give to your intended recipient to explain why you did not buy them a real gift.
When you begin your de-gift journey, you will notice a “Dollar Amount” option with a “Buy Now” button. Although the “Buy Now” button leads to a checkout page that instructs you to use PayPal to purchase your gift of nothing, I can assure you that you can prepare a de-gift without this step. I’m pretty sure you can’t actually buy a de-gift and this is all a joke, but you know, just be smart and don’t click on the “Buy Now” button.
So really, the first order of business is to select the occasion for which you’ve chosen to give your recipient nothing. There is a wide array of holidays to choose from, including Guy Fawkes Day, Boxing Day and Belated Halloween. I’ll go with birthday for this example since I just had mine recently.
Next, de-gift asks you to chose an excuse for why you would like to give nothing.
“The Mitch” is my favorite, but half the fun is selecting different excuses to read how de-gift explains your lack of a gift.
Finally, choose the amount of money you’d like to tell your recipient that you intended to spend on them, but didn’t.
Now, click the “De-Gift Me!” button. A fully prepared certificate is displayed. You can save the image from this screen. One easy way is to right click on the screen and choose “Save Image”.
That’s it! When I tried this a few years ago, I just pasted the image into a word doc, expanded the image and printed out a full page certificate. I then wrapped up the certificates in a shirt box and presented to my cousins. Boy, were they surprised to receive nothing! (Sidenote: yes I did give them a real gift, but I waited a few minutes after the reading of the de-gifts before I presented their real gifts).