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Giving kids gift vouchers...

(34 Posts)
PissFlappage Tue 20-Dec-16 13:47:29

We give gift vouchers every Christmas to DH's nieces and nephew. We've done this since they were born. I'd always thought this was fine- it shows some willing but means the kids can get what they want and means the house isn't cluttered with unused tat.

Over the weekend, DH's brother asked DH what we'd got their kids and he replied it was vouchers and a tub of sweets each (so they have something to unwrap).

DH's brother went really stroppy basically saying that we couldn't be bothered to make any effort to buy for his kids. I said jokingly that we wouldn't bother at all next year then if that's the thanks we get. Things went back to normal then but he said it's apparently "bad manners" to give kids gift vouchers. I've never seen a problem with it.

So, is it "bad manners"? AIBU?

The kids are 2 and 5.

DH and his brother aren't close at all. We've only met these kids once or twice and DH can go several years without seeing his brother, they speak every couple of months for 10 minutes on the phone. So it's not like these are kids we see regularly and know well.

Sirzy Tue 20-Dec-16 13:49:49

Personally I would rather someone gave ds money or vouchers than a present he will never touch.

I know some people aren't fans of vouchers though.

PissFlappage Tue 20-Dec-16 13:54:43

Thanks sirzy, that's what I thought!

xStefx Tue 20-Dec-16 13:58:33

I would rather vouchers, sounds like DH brother just picking at something to have a go at his brother. Good on you for sticking up for yourself.

PissFlappage Tue 20-Dec-16 14:02:20

That's what it felt like Stef They have quite a strained relationship.

xStefx Tue 20-Dec-16 14:15:26

Yeah , its just brother finding something to have a go at brother for. Nothing wrong with vouchers. Shame some people have to be so ungreatful. Your comment back was great, you sound like me as its exactly what I would have said x

leccybill Tue 20-Dec-16 14:18:01

For very young children, it's nice to have a toy to unwrap a day and I like choosing for the young ones in my family.

But for children you don't know and have never met, vouchers are completely acceptable.
I'm getting vouchers for my nieces this year but they are 9 and 11 so tricky to buy for.

Footinmouthasusual Tue 20-Dec-16 14:18:36

Kids love vouchers and makes far more sense especially when you don't see them that often.

To be honest you are a better person than me op as I would have kept the vouchers and no more presents. He's a rude fucker

elodie2000 Tue 20-Dec-16 14:23:58

I am in favour of gift cards for older children for the same reason you give.
However, you say that they are 2 and 5! The 2 year old is far too young to choose for themselves and the 5 year old is unlikely to understand the value of the gift card. Between 0-7 is the easiest age to buy for! A book or a small toy and some sweets would do!
If they end up with multiples of something they already have, ask BIL sweetly if they'd prefer you went back to giving giftcards!

LittleBoat Tue 20-Dec-16 14:25:18

I didn't like vouchers for mine when they were little because they were never for right shop, I also an generally not able to afford high street shops (more a charity shopper) and so they always ended up costing me money I didn't have, or not getting spent in the way they were intended. Plus, a 2 yr old wont get any joy out of opening a voucher as a present.

Now my nieces are older I get them high street vouchers, which they've asked for, but my own children (13 & 10) still prefer a present or cash at a push.

All that said, I think your Dh's brother is the one with the bad manners. I would stop buying presents for these kids routinely at Christmas and try just to treat them when you see them.

pishedoff Tue 20-Dec-16 14:25:28

I actually don't mind vouchers/money for children, mine ( particularly youngest) love to go and spend it!

RhodaBorrocks Tue 20-Dec-16 14:28:36

I'm torn on this - when they're little they love opening presents, but I used to hate some of the tat that people would get and DS would never play with it.

DS is older now (9) and for the past few years has absolutely loved getting money or vouchers. He saves gifted and pocket money until he can buy the big things he really wants and is always thrilled that he's been able to choose something and pay for it himself.

As a result he now gives gift vouchers for his friends birthdays. Slightly more effort than a tenner tucked in a card, but gives the DC the opportunity to make their own decisions.

Your BIL sounds rather ungrateful tbh. Growing up I was lucky if I got anything from some of my aunts and uncles, and my DParents never said a word!

bookwormnerd Tue 20-Dec-16 14:33:50

My kids would love it. They love going in the shop to pick something. Mine are 2 and 5. It also means less chance of doubles which happens alot. To be honest my two appreciate anything given.

stitchglitched Tue 20-Dec-16 14:34:26

My sibling group all give each other's older kids (from about 7) vouchers, and we find out which shop each child would prefer so that we all buy for that shop and the child has more spending power. For younger kids we buy them toys to unwrap. But I would never be anything other than grateful for any gift someone got my kids. BIL sounds bloody rude.

loobyloo1234 Tue 20-Dec-16 14:35:13

It's kind of a be grateful for what you get situation ... BUT ... I would never buy my nieces/nephews vouchers. I always ask what they would like. I just don't like it whilst their children. I like them to have something to unwrap and see them actually use whatever it is I buy (which they do)

Each to their own though I guess. And your DH's DB shouldn't be rude to your face just behind it grin

PissFlappage Tue 20-Dec-16 14:35:31

See, I don't find young children easy to buy for at all. I've no idea what things are age appropriate and its actually really hard to get non-gendered toys!

PissFlappage Tue 20-Dec-16 14:36:30

looby We always get them sweets or chocolates so they've something to unwrap!

LittleBoat Tue 20-Dec-16 14:38:13

Can you ask what they would like?

Pemba Tue 20-Dec-16 14:38:14

Of course it's not 'bad manners'. What absolute nonsense. Gift vouchers have been a very acceptable thing to receive for many years now, for kids too.

I am sure your DNs are far more pleased to have the choice of getting exactly what they would like. I can remember (although it's a long time ago!) as a kid I felt the same. Presents from a relative you don't see very often can be great, but it's a bit hit and miss.

It was generous of DH and you to remember his DNs each year. And gift tokens are a far safer option, especially as you don't know them that well.

What do your DCs (if you have them) get from BIL?

I would advise DH to suggest to his 'D'B that as it seems to upset him so much, perhaps you shouldn't bother next time. Weirdo. (Not you, BIL!)

scaryteacher Tue 20-Dec-16 14:38:19

I give book tokens or Amazon vouchers...always far easier, and as I loved getting book tokens as a kid (and still do now at 50), it's an easy way to sort Christmas.

OhMrBadger Tue 20-Dec-16 14:38:29

Vouchers are great for kids. Mind love choosing their own toys and as one of my DCs has a January birthday, he ends up with a sizeable amount and is delighted to get to go and blow it on a huge Lego set.

We always ask for vouchers if anyone asks what to get us/DCs. Otherwise you end up with 2 foot tall, remote control inflatable Minions like we did last year...

hulkbuster Tue 20-Dec-16 14:42:03

Yanbu gift voucher means that the kids get to go toy shopping after Christmas and pick a toy they want.
I used to get toys r us vouchers every year from my grandad and remember the visits to the shop and getting to pick toys I wanted. It was exciting and extends the joy of Xmas imho. Any effort made on behalf of my kids whether it's vouchers or gifts I'm extremely grateful for. He seems entitled and ungrateful hmm

MadisonAvenue Tue 20-Dec-16 14:43:25

Mine have always enjoyed getting vouchers since they were very young, and always had fun spending them.

The only one which doesn't go down too well is a WH Smiths voucher. My 16 year old gets one regularly and he's not into books, stationary or magazines so usually ends up using them on meal deals at the station for our lunch when he and I go to the football.

MammyNeedsASpaDay Tue 20-Dec-16 14:43:38

I would love vouchers for my kids, they would also appreciate it.

Let's face it because of all the presents they get, if the odd person gets them vouchers it's not like they'll cry their eyes out because it couldn't be unwrapped?!?!

I'd find vouchers a hell of a lot more useful than some of the toys they get (not age appropriate, stay in the box and get given to my friend when she does raffles!) YADNBU.

NerrSnerr Tue 20-Dec-16 14:48:02

We have a 2 year old and like getting vouchers. She just has so many toys, clothes and books it's nice to be able to get her something that would be useful. We also have generous family members who send cheques, we have put those in premium bonds for her since she was born as we know she'll really appreciate it as a teen or older.

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