Is it Rude To Say You Don’t Like a Gift?

Everyone has received a gift at one point or another in their life that they don’t like (to put it mildly). But, did you tell the gift-giver as much? Or did you hold your tongue? 

Even more importantly, is it rude to say you don’t like a gift? Read on below and learn the answer to this question!

Is it Rude to Say You Don’t Like a Gift?

Generally speaking, it is considered quite rude to say that you don’t like a gift. The proper thing to do, in many people’s eyes, is simply to thank the person for the gift. 

There is no need to say that you like it, or how great it is if you don’t indeed like the gift. That said, there is equally no reason for saying out loud that you don’t like the gift.

How Rude Is it?


Saying that you don’t like a gift that someone gave you rates 7 out of 10 on the rude meter

The reason it doesn’t rate 10 out of 10 stars is that sometimes it is ok to tell your gift giver that you don’t like the gift (in the case that it is something offensive or otherwise improper to you, personally).

For example, if someone gifts you a lovely pork BBQ rub… but your religion forbids you from eating pork, it is ok to tell the giver that you don’t like the gift.

On the other hand, saying that you don’t like a shirt (that you can simply bury in your closet and forget about, with no hurt feelings) is often taken as rude by the gift-giver.

Why is it Rude?

Telling someone that you don’t like a gift is more often than not considered rude because, for the most part, there is no need to do so. When someone takes the time (and money) to buy (or make) you a gift, the polite thing to do is be thankful for the motion (if not the gift itself).

Other Options to Do Instead

If you absolutely despise or simply can not use a gift that someone has bestowed upon you in good faith, there are a few great options to do instead of saying you don’t like it:

  • Set the gift on a shelf where it can collect dust for eternity and no one’s feelings get hurt
  • Think of the perfect person for this gift and then regift it to them as soon as possible
  • Wait a decent amount of time (weeks, or months, if not longer) and sell the gift to someone that wants it/needs it
  • Give the gift back/refuse to accept it, and explain to the giver why you are doing so

Common Questions

Is it right to tell someone you don’t like a gift?

It is only rude to tell someone that you don’t like their gift if you do it in a snotty/ungrateful manner. First, thank them properly, for the thought (because that is what matters), and then tell them why you don’t like the gift.

How do you tell someone you don’t like their gift?

Simply tell them as soon as possible. Thank them, and tell them you appreciate it but don’t like it. The minute you receive the gift, and don’t like it, let them know why (if it is worth it). If the gift is trivial, simply accept it, thank them, and set it aside or give it away to someone.

What do you do with a gift you don’t like?

If you don’t like a gift, you can keep it somewhere in storage, give it to someone who will use it, or even sell it. You could also throw it away, though this action is considered highly rude and uncalled for.