It’s the most wonderful time of the year: Holiday gift shopping season! And with gift shopping comes another important, yet oft-overlooked, part of the season: Gift hiding.
Nothing beats the moment a loved one rips off the wrapping paper and sees the gift for the first time. But if these gifts aren’t hidden well, the surprise may be ruined!
We wanted to know all about people’s gift-hiding tips and tricks — where gifts get hidden, where they get found, and everything in between. So we surveyed 1,000 Americans to ask how they keep holiday presents a surprise until it’s time to celebrate. Here’s what we learned.
Some of our most interesting findings:
- Bedroom closets are the most popular place to hide gifts, but also the first place people look for hidden gifts, and the most common place where gifts get found.
- 50% of people have been successful in their gift-hiding — but that means 50% of people have had a hidden present get found.
- Most hidden gifts get discovered within a week.
- Most people (60%) say hiding gifts is fun and doesn’t add to their holiday stress.
These Are the Most Popular Places to Hide Gifts
If you stash gifts in your bedroom closet, you’re not alone. That was, by far, the most popular place to hide gifts.
Here are the top hiding spots according to our respondents:
- Bedroom closet: 53%
- In a spare room: 31.5%
- Coat closet: 26%
- Under their bed: 26%
- In the trunk of their car: 25%
- In a spare drawer or cabinet: 17%
- In the basement: 16%
- In the garage: 15%
- Under a couch: 14%
- At someone else’s house: 14%
- In the attic: 13%
- In a desk: 11%
- Outside: 11%
- In a kid’s room: 10%
- In a shed: 10%
- In the bathroom: 9%
- In a storage unit: 8.5%
And These Are the First Places People Look for Hidden Gifts
Unfortunately, some of the most popular hiding places are also the first places people think to look. We asked survey respondents which hiding place they thought was the most obvious (where they’d go first to check for any hidden gifts) and, to no one’s surprise, a quarter of them said the bedroom closet.
- Bedroom closet: 25%
- Under a bed: 22%
- In the trunk of a car: 15%
- Coat closet: 9%
- In a kid’s room: 6%
- In a spare room: 6%
- All other answers: 17%
Who Are We Hiding Presents From?
Of course, where you hide gifts probably depends on who you’re hiding them from, right? If you share a bedroom closet with your partner, you can’t hide their gift there. And hiding a child’s present in that child’s bedroom is a bold move.
Respondents could choose multiple answers to indicate everyone they typically hide gifts from, and the most common was, unsurprisingly, children.
- 47% said their kids.
- 38% said their partner.
- 20% said their friends.
- 20% said their siblings.
- 18% said their parents.
- 17% said their extended family.
Most Gift Hiding Places Are Successful…
When asked if a gift recipient had ever found a gift they were hiding, just over half of respondents — 50.1% — said no, their hiding places have been successful.
But that still leaves almost half — 49.9% — who have had their hidden gifts found by the recipient.
These Are the Places Where Hidden Gifts Are Most Commonly Found
It’s no wonder that so many gift recipients are able to find their hidden presents. The top places where survey respondents said their hidden gifts had been found were also the most popular hiding places:
- 26% of respondents had a gift get found in their bedroom closet.
- 21% had a gift get found in the trunk of their car.
- 10% had a gift get found in a spare room.
- 9% had a gift get found in a coat closet.
- 8% had a gift get found under their bed.
- 4% had a gift get found in a spare drawer or cabinet.
- 3% had a gift get found in the garage.
- 2% had a gift get found in the basement.
- 2% had a gift get found in the attic.
- 15% had a gift get found in another location.
It also seems like those who go looking for hidden presents are pretty determined to find them. The majority of people who have had one of their hidden gifts found by the recipient said they found it within a week.
However, the place where hidden gifts seem to be discovered the fastest is in the trunk of a car — 57% of people who said their gifts were discovered in less than an hour had hidden them there.
Most People Aren’t Worried About Recipients Seeing Shipping Boxes
One big tip-off that there’s a gift hidden somewhere in the house? A pile of boxes getting dropped off by a delivery driver. But most people say they aren’t worried about present recipients seeing their deliveries arrive — 82% said they go ahead and ship gifts straight to their house, while only 18% said they ship them somewhere else to keep the packages under wraps.
Is Hiding Holiday Gifts Stressful or Fun?
So we’ll never be as good at hiding gifts as we think — no matter how hard we might try to keep presents hidden in the time leading up to the holidays, it seems like no hiding place is truly safe. So does this add to the holiday stress?
Most people say no.
60% of respondents said they don’t mind hiding gifts, and that it adds to the fun of the holiday season. Only 19% said it adds to their holiday stress significantly, while 21% said it causes them just a little bit of anxiety.
Our Study Shows Holiday Shopping Season Is Already Underway
We surveyed these respondents at the end of October and were surprised to learn how many of them aren’t procrastinating on their holiday shopping this year.
As of Oct. 27, 62% said they had already started shopping for the holidays. 13% said they planned to start shopping the pre-Thanksgiving sales, and 17% said they’d start their holiday shopping on Black Friday. Only 9% of respondents said they typically wait to start shopping until the last minute.
That means more time to keep gifts hidden. Why not make sure they don’t get found this year — by hiding them with a neighbor? Neighbor connects people with others in their community who can help provide them a safe, secure place to store extra belongings — whether it’s for long-term storage or just the holiday season.
Using Pollfish.com, we surveyed 1,000 Americans ages 16 and up on Oct. 27. 2021. Respondents were:
- 6% ages 16-17
- 9% ages 18-24
- 1% ages 25-34
- 8% ages 35-44
- 4% ages 45-54
- 2% over age 54
Respondents came from all 50 states. They were 41% male and 59% female.