With many offices operating at least partially remote in 2021, there's a good chance you will be attending a virtual office holiday party. And, as with any Christmas or seasonal event, expect it to come with a gift exchange or secret Santa. Even gifts swapped over a video call can spread holiday cheer.
If you have a gift exchange with your remote team, there is generally a preset amount of money each team member spends. You don't have to go over budget to find a bountiful selection of office holiday party gifts.
Video of the Day
Gift cards might be the number one gift for virtual events because they stick to the budget, are easy to get and are available for various goods and services:
- restaurants and cafes
- food delivery services
- app stores
- streaming services
- beverage stores
If you don't know your teammate well enough to choose, you can't go wrong with an Amazon gift card.
Sending Virtual Holiday Gifts Early
Typically, virtual holiday parties have a name draw and gift exchange before the Zoom call so the team can open gifts and show them off in real-time during the video call. This is a fun way to engage the team in an interactive holiday activity and share the joy of gift giving. There are plenty of holiday gift ideas for around $20:
Order through Amazon or your coworker's favorite shop or restaurant. Most will offer an option for gift wrapping.
Memberships and Subscriptions
Giving the gift of a subscription or membership to a service or club is a great way to make a team member's holiday. There is something for every budget, depending on how well you know your colleague.
If you're in charge of planning for the team, you might want to send some party boosters ahead of the get-together.
Know what they love to read about? Go for an online magazine subscription. If they're a tea drinker, choose a tea-of-the-month club. If you're not in tune with their interests, you can go with Spotify or other streaming credits.
Most box clubs will have a one-month subscription option for gift givers. Cratejoy has some amazing boxes at every price point if you need a place to start.
Etsy and DIY Gifts
DIY gifts are another send-ahead option for unwrapping during the virtual party. If you like to shop arts and crafts sales looking for the creative handmade items, Etsy can be your go-to for virtual office party gifts.
You'll find creative gift ideas in dozens of categories, with items ranging from artsy to zany:
Etsy vendors will ship for you. Just make sure your gift will arrive before the scheduled Zoom call or Google meet.
Consider also: 5 DIY Gifts to the Rescue
Prizes for Party Games
For virtual party games and team-building activities, gift cards make a great prize you can award on the spot. Whoever gets the most trivia game answers correctly or wins the round of charades gets a prize.
If you have a main-event game, like a virtual scavenger hunt, the big winner might choose one of several wrapped holiday gifts that the virtual host opens for them on camera. The gift boxes might contain a physical present, gift card or a truly virtual gift in their honor like a holiday song sung by the virtual team or being able to choose the next song in the holiday playlist or picking the next fun game.
Truly virtual gifts like these can be team-building and add to the overall party mood.
Consider also: 6 Steps to a Virtual Holiday Gathering
Team Gifts to Send Ahead of the Party
If you're in charge of planning for the team, you might want to send some party boosters ahead of the get-together. Send Santa hats and jingle bells for holiday dress up and special holiday cups and carol lyrics for holiday cheer.
Lighthearted group gifts for the holiday season also serve as an icebreaker and spark easy conversation among remote employees.
Having a virtual Christmas or holiday party doesn't have to be giftless or one-dimensional video conferencing. With a little planning ahead, creativity and an eye on postal deadlines, you can have a fun gift exchange that celebrates your remote team and the holiday season.
Consider also: Cheap Gifts for a Big Group
- Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM): Even if COVID-19 Is a Party Pooper, Employers Find Ways to Celebrate
- Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA): How to Reinvent the Office Holiday Party this Season
- Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM): A Gift Guide for Your Employees
- The New York Times: 25 Best Gifts for People Who Work from Home