Yankee Swap Gift Ideas for Men


Yankee Swap is a game that's typically played at Christmastime. Everyone brings a wrapped gift, usually within a pre-set price limit. Everyone gets a turn either to choose a gift to unwrap or to "steal" a gift that someone else already has opened. Because you don't know who's going to end up with your gift, choose something that will appeal to a wide range of men -- and remember that the best Yankee Swap gifts are silly and fun.

Gag Gift

  • If you're playing with men who enjoy a good joke, buy a goofy gag gift from a joke or gift store. For younger men who still have a teenage mentality about what's funny, choose a whoopie cushion or a T-shirt with a lewd saying or picture. You also can choose an item that allows the owner to play practical jokes. Chances are good that more than one guy playing the swap game will enjoy pulling pranks.

Date Night

  • This gift lets a man take a companion for an evening out without spending money or even doing any planning. Buy a gift card to a local casual restaurant. If the price limit allows, add two movie passes or a gift certificate for a local florist so he can give her a bouquet of flowers.

Selection of Beers

  • Make a gift basket of different beers. If the price limit is high enough, you can buy three or four six-packs of local brands or lesser-known microbrews so the recipient gets to try some beers he's never had before. For a lower price limit, you can find single cans of beer at some stores, or gather up the single cans of different brands that are rolling around in your own fridge. Set them all up in a basket and stick a bow on the front, then put the whole thing inside a large paper bag and staple it shut. Chances are it will get chosen first; few can resist opening a big, oddly-shaped gift first. Be sure everyone who's playing is over the legal drinking age.

Lottery Tickets

  • Buy as many $1 lottery tickets as the price limits allows, or choose a selection of $2 to $5 tickets. Whoever gets the gift could at least make a couple of bucks off it -- and if he wins big, maybe he'll share.

A Book

  • Choose a book that will appeal to a wide variety of men, like an encyclopedia of rock 'n' roll or a book that chronicles the history of the local sports team. Or choose something funny, like a satirical coffee table book written by a comedian. For example, "Comedy Central" personalities Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert have both written books of this type, as have the editors of the comedy website TheOnion.com.

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