Don’t try to surprise your teenager! Here’s what they really want for Christmas


If you’re struggling to come up with the perfect gift idea for the teenager in your house, a new study has found that there are a lot of other parents in the same boat.

As it turns out, parents may not really know what their teens want for Christmas.

Read more: Most and least returned gifts of 2016

Here’s what your teenager really wants for Christmas

The cash back site found that 41% of parents think their teens want a gaming console, such as a PlayStation or Xbox. However, gaming consoles didn’t show up at the top of teens’ actual wish lists.

Here’s a closer look at the findings:

What parents think their teens want

  • Gaming console (Playstation or Xbox): 41%
  • Clothing or shoes (new jacket, slippers, a tie): 37.2%
  • iPhone: 24.7%
  • Sporting goods (tennis racquet, bike accessories): 21.6%
  • Accessories (jewelry, handbags, backpacks): 18.1%

What teens really want

  • Clothing or shoes: 60.4%
  • Sweets (cookies, candy): 36.8%
  • Accessories: 35.4%
  • Other (electronics, video games, money, gift cards): 25%
  • Sporting goods: 22.8%  

The perfect gift is what’s on their wish list 

There was a really interesting article in the New York Times recently that will make anyone who’s stressing out over finding the best gift feel better about their holiday shopping.

The story basically urged gift givers to keep it simple in every way possible.

The report cited a study that found people would rather receive the gifts they’ve asked for than something that’s unsolicited. So no need to plan a surprise! Just ask your teen what they’d like. 

For budget-friendly ideas, check out our lists of $20 gifts and $10 gifts that everyone will love.

Online shopping tip: Use one card

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