The Holiday Amazon Box Problem

The Holiday Amazon Box Problem

By the time Christmas comes around, our house is usually awash with boxes from Amazon. It gets a bit tricky at that point, because I'm never sure if the box is something I ordered to give to my family, or something someone else sent me as a gift. In the former case, I'll want to wrap it and put it under the tree. In the latter, a lot of times my wife will wrap it on behalf of the giver so it can still be a surprise Christmas morning. The problem is telling them apart.

I guess I'm not the only one with this problem. A friend sent me a message thanking me for a gift basket I'd sent him a couple of weeks ago. He hadn't opened it until it was time to start wrapping all the presents he'd ordered himself from Amazon. Hopefully the food was still edible.

At first I was thinking that Amazon needs to figure out how to solve that problem. If I were Amazon, I might just suggest gift wrapping presents to others so that it is always safe to open the box, but gift wrap starts to get expensive -- especially if you have several less-expensive items.

Another solution is to address the packages in a way that differentiates them. I've changed my wishlist address so that it includes "(Wishlist)" after my name. My regular ordering address now has "(Self Order)" after my name. Now maybe I just need to add "(A gift for you)" after the names of my friends to tip them off.

I guess I'll see how it goes...