Is there someone on your gift list this holiday season that you don't really like, but you feel obligated to buy for?

Most people spend a total of $127 on gifts for people that they don't like.

Usually there are three people on the list that you have to buy for that you're not real fond of, and the average spent on those people is $42 per gift.  That and some change adds up to an average of $127 during the holiday season that you fork over in obligated gift-giving.  In Australia they call it "obli-gifting."

Do these people know you're just giving them a gift because you have to?   Do you think they return it without your knowledge?  Does that fact that you're giving a gift make you a good person?  Or are you just really good at being passive-aggressive?

I don't dislike the newspaper delivery girl.  In fact I don't even know her, and if I did know her I might really like her.  But I feel obligated to get her a gift, since she left a self-addressed stamped envelope in that stack of coupons in the Sunday paper last weekend and screamed for one.  She might start throwing the paper at the flowers if I don't.  My house will become marked as "scrooge" and who wants that.  So I'll play along and send something.

A gift card it is!  That is the thing to do when in doubt this holiday season, and it might work well for obli-gifting too.  You might get off cheaper than $42 and that person might think you actually like them.  Win win.