How the zero waste movement has impacted Aussies’ gifting

Sixty-eight per cent of Australians agree that we need to rethink gift giving and give more sustainably, according to a study by group gifting website GroupTogether.com.

A further 60 per cent of people would prefer an e-gift card rather than a gift a friend chose for them.

Ali Linz, co-founder of GroupTogether, believes it’s time we started a movement to rethink the way we gift.

“There’s a simple way to reduce the waste by 93 per cent,” says Linz.

“Group gift. One really wanted gift, rather than 20 received for a birthday, farewell, baby shower or Christmas. It also saves money because each person can spend less but give better. GroupTogether makes it simple for everyone to chip in and sign a card online for a group gift and keepsake card.”

The Australian Retailers Association with Roy Morgan has estimated that we will spend $11 billion on Christmas gifts. The holidays generate more than 30 per cent more excess waste including 150,000km of wrapping paper which can wrap Australia six times. Australians will receive $572 million of unwanted gifts this Christmas.

Over half of those surveyed have already made up their mind about what they’ll be gifting this Christmas. Toys, jigsaw puzzles and board games top the list for 20 per cent of Australians, closely followed by vouchers and gift cards (18 per cent) and clothing, shoes and sleepwear (16 per cent).

Ninety per cent of Australians make an effort to recycle in some way. Seventy-two per cent of women surveyed agree that we should be thinking of the environment this festive season and 64 per cent of men surveyed agree.

In the last few years group gifting has grown exponentially, says GroupTogether.com co-founder, Julie Tylman.

“At GroupTogether.com, over 500,000 Aussies use GroupTogether to group gift,” she says.

“You’re saving the planet without compromise. It’s actually better for the recipient too as they get a better gift. People realise that it is still personal because of the bespoke card with everyone’s messages and photos, a real keepsake. Group gifting ticks all the boxes which is why GroupTogether.com has grown so much over the last five years.”