Throw the Best White Elephant Gift Exchange | Use Our Free Printable Invitations & Game Rules

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white elephant party tips

Hosting a White Elephant Gift Exchange this Christmas?

Be sure to check out our tips and free printable invites plus game rules to help with this fun Christmas tradition! A White Elephant Gift Exchange is a popular game where each member of a group brings a funny/interesting wrapped present.

It’s highly entertaining with lots of laughter as people exchange and steal gifts. And ultimately, everyone ends up a winner!

woman opening white elephant gifts

Tips for hosting the best White Elephant Gift Exchange:

  • The game usually works best with at least 4-6 people and even more fun with larger groups!
  • Decide on a dollar amount for gifts AHEAD of time so all of the gifts are roughly the same value and communicate this information on your invitation. Click HERE to print our free invitations!
  • Want to make your white elephant a specific type or themed gift exchange? Some examples would be only exchanging Christmas ornaments, kid’s toys, handmade crafts, or books! Some people even choose to only bring re-gifts or small items they may not use at home any longer which involves no spending at all.

free printable white elephant gift exchange party

framed white elephant gift exchange rules

What are the rules of a White Elephant Gift Exchange?

  1. Check out our basic White Elephant Gift Exchange Game rules that you can print and display at your event!
  2. Place limits on exchanging or stealing gifts so the game will have an ending point. Visit for more detailed directions.
  3. If you are thinking of planning this activity for very young children, first read the rules and then decide if your kids should participate.

I made this mistake once and there were tears because some kids were too young to understand the concept of picking a present and then having it taken away.

how to throw a white elephant gift exchange party

What do I bring to a White Elephant Gift Exchange?

In general, most White Elephant gifts are under $20. You could go with a funny or functional gift, it’s really up to you and the audience at the party. Usually, I find that the more interesting the gift, the more fun the game will be!

Here are some fun suggestions:

woman holding golden girls coloring book

Be sure to check out all of our fave White Elephant Gift ideas here!

What food should I serve at a white elephant gift exchange? 

I host a White Elephant Christmas Ornament Exchange each year for my friends and I try to incorporate some delicious holiday appetizers, drinks, and desserts for a fun evening!

Here are some of my favorites: 

Have you played this popular Saran wrap ball game?!

About the writer:

Lina has a Bachelor's Degree from Northern Arizona University with 10 years of blogging and photography experience having work featured in, Martha Stewart, Country Living, Fox News, Buzzfeed, and HGTV.

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