Realistic Secret Santa Presents

The Tab guides your through Christmas shopping without breaking the bank

Pulled the name of that one incredibly awkward and fussy housemate out of the Secret Santa hat (or bowl as we used) and now have to find them something for a fiver that will be a perfect combination of funny and appreciated? Panic not, The Tab is at hand to save the day once again with this handy gift guide that’s enough to make even Father Christmas himself proud.

A Christmas Jumper


The more cringingly over the top the better, anything that lights up or plays music is ideal but, if not, there are plenty of options out there. If they don’t wear it to your flat Christmas meal then you can act all offended and guilt trip them into living in it for the rest of December. At the very least, they can always check out the Tab’s ‘How To Wear’ for inspiration…



What student doesn’t enjoy a nice Christmas tipple? Shops like BHS and John Lewis do some nice gift sets that come with chocolates and glasses. Or you can always just go for the Sainsburys basics vodka – it might not look as classy but it will be much better suited for Crisis All Whiter predrinks than a bottle of Baileys (not a good choice for downing).

Something Offensive


If you ask me, you’re not really friends if you don’t rip into each other endlessly and the holiday season is no reason to show any mercy. There are plenty of joke presents out there (often relating to certain parts of the anatomy) and you can buy a Grow Your Own Pretty Much Anything off eBay so go on, be cruel. ‘Tis the season and all that.

Pound Shop Goodies



If you’ve never wandered around the various pound shops of Nottingham and admired the vast array of random rubbish you can get there then now is the perfect time. My personal favourites were the Christmas brooches and mugs with diamante ‘BFF’ on them, so go have a rummage and see what wonders you can uncover. Even if they hate it, so what? A pound won’t even buy you a Jagerbomb.

A Good Book



No I don’t mean Advanced Economics Analysis Volume III, although that may be useful for their degree I was thinking more along the lines of ‘The Grumpy Cat Book’ or ‘Penis Pokey’. Joke books are always a winner in my eyes and the newly opened Urban Outfitters has some real winners.

Something Homemade


Remember how much your parents loved the pasta photo frame you made them every Mother’s day as a child? Well I’m sure your friends will love it just as much. There are lots of great homemade items out there, although I can’t promise it’ll turn out quite like the pictures on Pinterest. You could bake them some nice cookies or create a photo album showcasing all your Instagrams of nights out. A great (and cheap) idea would be to wrap a cardboard box up and fill it with Pot Noodles and call it a ‘Student Hamper’ (not quite on the same level as the food hampers in John Lewis).

A Hint


Got a housemate that never cleans up? Buy them a sparkly dustpan and some nice washing up gloves. Got a friend who always steals your pen for a lecture? A pencil case and Bic multi-pack. That one housemate whose room just smells a bit off? You can buy several incense and candle sets in Evolution. Passive aggressive? Yes. Likely to make a difference? Probably not. Self-satisfying for you? You bet.