Switch - Shockingly simple group payments Switch - Shockingly simple group payments

Campus Internship

How to Do a Secret Santa with an Odd Number: A Guide to Successful Gift Exchanges in the Holiday Season

September 28, 2023

A person sitting on a beach chair and looking out at the ocean with palm trees in the background.

How to Do a Secret Santa with an Odd Number

Are you planning a holiday party or festive celebration and want to include a fun gift exchange? One popular option is Secret Santa, a group gift exchange where participants draw names and anonymously give gifts to each other. But what do you do if you have an odd number of participants? Don't worry, we've got you covered!

In this blog post, we'll show you how to successfully organize a Secret Santa with an odd number of participants. You'll learn practical tips and strategies to ensure everyone has a great time and receives a thoughtful gift.

How To: Organize a Secret Santa with an Odd Number

Are you ready to kick off your holiday season with a memorable and inclusive gift exchange? Follow these steps to successfully organize a Secret Santa with an odd number of participants:

1. Establish the Rules

Clearly communicate the rules of the Secret Santa to all participants. Include details such as the spending limit, gift exchange date, and any preferences or restrictions (e.g., no gag gifts).

2. Assign a "Santa's Helper"

Designate one person to act as a "Santa's Helper" and participate in the gift exchange twice. This person will be responsible for buying and receiving two gifts, ensuring that everyone is paired up.

3. Use a Three-Participant Loop

If you have three participants, create a loop where each person is assigned to give a gift to the next person in the loop. For example, Participant A gives to Participant B, Participant B gives to Participant C, and Participant C gives to Participant A.

4. Include a Group Gift

If you have more than three participants, consider adding a group gift to the mix. This way, everyone can contribute to a larger gift that can be enjoyed by the entire group. It's a great way to build camaraderie and ensure that no one feels left out.

5. Plan an Optional Gift Swap

To make things even more exciting, you can organize an optional gift swap. Participants who are paired up can choose to exchange gifts with each other if they prefer. This adds an element of surprise and allows for more personalization in the gift-giving process.

6. Keep the Spirit Alive

Throughout the gift exchange, encourage participants to keep the Secret Santa spirit alive by keeping their identities a secret until the big reveal. This adds an extra layer of excitement and intrigue to the event.

7. Make it Fun!

Remember, the key to a successful Secret Santa is creating a fun and inclusive atmosphere. Consider incorporating festive decorations, music, and games to add to the holiday spirit. Encourage participants to get creative with their gift wrapping and to write thoughtful notes to accompany their gifts.

A Memorable Secret Santa Experience for Everyone

By following these steps, you can organize a memorable Secret Santa gift exchange even with an odd number of participants. Everyone will have a great time and feel included in the holiday festivities. And if you're looking for a seamless way to manage the gift exchange, consider using Switch. With its easy-to-use platform and transparent money management features, Switch takes the stress out of collecting and spending money in groups. Start planning your Secret Santa today and make this holiday season one to remember!

Key Takeaways

  • Establish clear rules for the Secret Santa gift exchange
  • Assign a "Santa's Helper" to ensure everyone is paired up
  • Create a loop or include a group gift to accommodate odd numbers of participants
  • Plan an optional gift swap for added excitement
  • Keep the Secret Santa spirit alive with surprises and a festive atmosphere

Happy holidays and happy gifting!

Get the App

Get started in


Switch is a financial technology company and is not a bank. Banking services provided by Thread Bank; Member FDIC. The Switch Visa® Debit Card is issued by Thread Bank pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc. and may be used anywhere Visa debit cards are accepted.

© 2023 Grink Inc.