Looking to Spice up Your Yankee Swap? Let Me Help You

My family has been doing Yankee Swap for as long as I can remember. Every year, on Christmas Eve, we sit around in a circle and play this game. For a while, we played it so that everyone brought a random gift that was around $25. Eventually, we became kinda bored of doing the same thing every year, so we decided to research some ways to make our Yankee Swap a bit more exciting. In not long, we were able to come up with a bunch of ways we could make the gift exchange more fun. Here are a couple of themes we have tried so far:

  1. 1. Letters

    two gifts are wrapped in brown paper and covered with green and star-shaped soaps.

    The first thing my family tried was assigning everyone a letter. On a day we were pretty much all together, we wrote every letter in the alphabet on a piece of paper and put them all in a small bowl. Then we had everyone who wanted to participate grab a piece of paper and whatever letter that got was their theme for the Yankee Swap. In the game, everything you buy as your gift must start with your letter. For example, if you got the letter, ‘u’, you could get an ‘u’mbrella or an ‘u’gly sweater, or one of my family members even put a ‘u’sed gift card in his gift. This is a great way to make your gift exchange more exciting, especially when you try and guess the letter!

  2. 2. Countries

    Another great way to make your Yankee Swap more exciting is to have everyone pick a country. My family just gathered a list of countries that we felt would be both challenging, but also not so difficult we couldn’t find anything. Everything in your gift needed to revolve around whatever country you picked. If you picked France, you could put a baguette, croissants, or maybe even an Eifel tower keychain.

    World globe
  3. 3. Numbers

    One last way to spice up your Yankee Swap is to use numbers. This time everyone is assigned a number. You can play this game a couple of ways. You could buy things that only use your number in the name, like the movie “10 Things I Hate About You” or “Sixth Sense” which has the number in the title. Or you could buy only things that cost a certain amount, so if you got 8, you could buy something that is $8.00. Another option is buying several of the same items. If you got the number 5, you could buy five packs of hot chocolare. There are no rules though, so you can play it however you like.

My family has had a lot of fun these past few years changing up our Yankee Swap, so I hope you got some inspiration and try one of these out with your family.