A Santa surprise? Don’t bet on it...

If you’re hoping to surprise loved ones with your gifts this Christmas, you may be disappointed, as a third of us have seen our presents before they’re given according to new research.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 19th December 2012, 6:20 am

34 per cent of UK adults have spotted their hidden Christmas presents and shockingly 19 per cent of us actually go searching for them in advance of the big day.

Of those who either stumble across gifts accidentally or can’t help but peek, 91 per cent keep quiet about these discoveries and 87 per cent agree that they wish they hadn’t seen them.

A lack of storage, an increase in online deliveries and bad hiding techniques have been blamed for the phenomenon with eight per cent of us seeing gifts just left out in full view!

The survey of 2,000 people by fitted furniture firm Betta Living, found that the most popular places to spot gifts included under the bed, on top of the wardrobe, in the spare room and in the garage/shed.

However, some of us are becoming more savvy when it comes to stashing with 39 per cent of us organising our deliveries to arrive at work rather than home, 33 per cent admit to leaving gifts in the boot of their cars and 23 per cent said that they ask neighbours to hide their gifts for them.

The wardrobe was the first place curious gift-hunters look, with women being the worst culprits for seeking out presents. Men, perhaps out of necessity, proved to be the most imaginative hiders, with 25 per cent of those questioned not bringing gifts into the house until Christmas Eve.

Barry Rourke at Betta Living said: “It’s disappointing when you’ve put love and energy into finding the perfect surprise gift only to find out that your loved ones have seen them already!

“Storing gifts outside of the home is not ideal as you still need to find a way to sneak them in before Christmas Day and leaving items in your car could see them get stolen!

“On a positive note, most people are not looking for gifts, but instead are stumbling upon them. We have become so consumed with buying the presents that we’ve become lazy when it comes to storing them, thus losing the element of surprise on Christmas Day!”

Top tips for keeping gifts a surprise:

WRAP! Don’t leave your wrapping until the last minute – this way if your gifts are found, it’s less tempting to peek!

GO HIGH – if you have fitted wardrobes, stash gifts at the top where you rarely venture

DISGUISE – hide gifts in towels, or in piles of bedding or in suitcases

OUT OF THE BOX – utilise the space in your kitchen, use the back of cupboards to store unusual sized items

HOME OFFICE – if you have a private domain, like a home office this is the perfect spot to hide presents – as long as they’re behind closed doors