Is it Rude To Sell a Gift?

It happens all the time: someone has the best intentions, and presents you with a gift that you have no need or desire for. 

Is it rude to sell a gift, under such circumstances? Read on below and discover the answer!

Is it Rude to Sell a Gift?

Selling a gift that someone gave you is not exactly rude, per se, but it isn’t considered quite polite either. The truth is, selling a gift is perfectly fine, so long as you don#t go about it like a jerk. 

If you want to make ensure that no one’s feelings are hurt, make sure to thank the person, and wait at least a short period of time before putting it up for sale and exchanging it for some cash.

How Rude Is it?


Selling a gift rates 3 out of 10 on the rude meter. Seeling a gift isn’t rude if you don’t do it directly under the giver’s nose. That said, there is always a chance that the gift-giver may find out that you sold the gift and you should be prepared to stand accountable for your action.

Why is it Not Rude?

It isn’t rude to sell a gift that you can’t use, don’t like, or don’t want. What is rude is to come off as ungrateful for the gift, and make the gift-giver feel belittled or insulted. That’s why you should thank them for the gift, wait a bit, then quietly sell it off discreetly.

Other Options to Do Instead

A few good options exist for those who don’t want to sell a gift for fear of how it will make the giver feel:

  • Politely offer to return the gift after thanking them for it and explaining why you can’t use it/don’t want it
  • Think of the perfect person for the gift and re-gift it to them (and make sure you tell them where the gift originally came from)
  • Set the gift on a shelf out of respect to the giver, or pack it away somewhere never to be seen or heard from again (and no one’s feelings will be hurt)
  • Suggest someone who could use this particular gift more than yourself (to the actual giver of the gift at the time of receiving it from them)

Common Questions

Is selling a gift wrong?

Selling a gift isn’t wrong, but it could be considered rude if you aren’t careful about the way you go about handling your business. For example, if you list the gift for sale in a Facebook group 15 minutes after receiving it, but pretended to love it, how do you suppose the gift-giver would feel if they happened to notice? Further, how would YOU feel?

Should you tell someone you don’t like a gift?

Depending on how well you know someone, you should always be honest about the gifts you receive from them. If you don’t like, need, or want something, let them know. Otherwise, you may get similar gifts in the future based on their misconception (thinking that you liked the gift, when you really didn’t).

How long to wait before selling a gift?

There is no specific amount of time that you should wait before selling a gift. That said, selling it the same day you receive it, or even the next day, may be seen as rude and unthoughtful. Always try to keep the gift-giver in mind while considering how and when to sell a gift you don’t want or need.