Hilarious Gift-Wrapping Pranks Right in Time for the Holidays


| LAST UPDATE 11/10/2022

By Malikah Mcintosh

It is the most wonderful time of the year… to pull a prank on friends and family! Make this holiday season the funniest one, from misleading gift wrapping to gooey surprises. Let's get started.

Gigantic Box, Small Gift

There is nothing like a good prank to begin the holiday season. It may seem daunting to come up with how to surprise someone, but sometimes the best way to trick someone is the most obvious, too!

massive box gift prankmassive box gift prank
u/tmotom via Reddit

Buy a gift that is on the smaller side, and then find a ginormous box. Place the small gift in the huge box, and present it - just like this user hilariously did. "Here's my brother's present. It was a gift card," she proudly shared. Consider us inspired.

Sticky Situation

It is hard to coordinate a prank into the gift, so the prank has to fit with what the present will be. This next prank will work in any circumstance, from the largest electronic gaming system to the tiniest jewelry box. There are only a few things necessary to get started.

double sided tape giftdouble sided tape gift
@lorycia__gd via Instagram

All that is needed for this prank is a gift, wrapping paper, and double-sided sticky tape. Wrap the gift, as usual, then once it is ready to go, apply the double-sided sticky tape to the outside of the gift. Now wait and watch the gift opener try to unwrap their gift when their fingers are stuck to the paper!

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Russian Nesting Box

Russian nesting dolls, also known as Matryoshka dolls or stacking dolls, are a classic gift. They are dolls that get smaller in size as they are opened. They originally date back all the way to the 1800s and symbolize fertility and motherhood. This prank takes inspiration from the classic variation.

funny gift prank ideasfunny gift prank ideas
@HannahNuhh via Twitter

First, collect multiple varying-sized boxes. Second, put the gift in the smallest box and then wrap it. Continue placing the smaller gift into a slightly larger one and keep doing this until finished. This prank will have friends going crazy when they have to open ten boxes to get their present!

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Empty Promises

There is nothing like the element of surprise. So, why not take that to the next level for friends and family by hiding the gift among a bunch of empty boxes? They will have to open empty box after empty box, just to find one gift. Imagine the frustration!

empty gift box prankempty gift box prank
@shaa_glance via Instagram

Want to elevate this prank to the next level? The way is simple: do not buy a gift from the start. Only put empty presents out. So, friends and family will have to go through and unwrap every single present before they realize there is nothing even to open. (Thank us later.)

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Gift Card Roulette

This idea is for the especially devious pranksters who repeatedly want to embarrass their friends and family. It also helps to spice up the most boring gift usually given - the gift card. So, if a gift card was on the wish list, keep this idea in mind.

Gift Card Roulette PrankGift Card Roulette Prank
@shopshinelife via Instagram

Buy a gift card but then package it alongside a bunch of other gift cards. The twist is that only one of the gift cards is valid - and whoever receives the present will have no idea which one is active. So, it will be a game to determine which is the winner.

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Judging a Book by Its Cover

This prank has the potential to destroy relationships and end friendships... but it could also bring the greatest laughs of the holiday season. It is easy enough to pull off for those who want to risk losing their loved ones. Take a box that is labeled with something. It could be an iPhone case or a ring box.

proposal ring box prankproposal ring box prank
u/[deleted] via Reddit

Then, take that box and put the actual gift inside of it. So, after the gift recipient unwraps the wrapping paper, they will think they are getting whatever is inside the box. Only once they open the box will they realize they got something else entirely. So, is the risk worth the reward?

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Master of Disguise

The best pranks are ones that misguide the prankee entirely. So, this idea takes that to the most extreme level. It may require some crafting skills, so be sure to practice before the real deal. When presenting a gift, place it in whatever box works. Then, this is when the hard part comes in.

present disguised sailboat prankpresent disguised sailboat prank
u/Altrefrain via Reddit

The next bit is when the present becomes a master of disguise. Use different items, boxes, and whatever else is easy to find and make a present that looks entirely different than what it actually is. This family above has kept this tradition going for decades. It is about time for everyone else to join in!

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Get the Party Started

For the pranksters that love a bit of a boom to go with their gifts, this next prank will send them rocketing. Take a party popper, which can usually be purchased at a party supplies store, and wrap that. Then, write instructions on the outside that direct the prankees on how to open the "gift" properly.

party popper prank ideaparty popper prank idea
Nextraker via YouTube

When the recipients twist their gift open, they will be extremely shocked to discover that it is actually a party popper. Be warned that this prank may involve a lot of screaming and angry friends and family. However, it is a definite way to get the party started.

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Everything Is a Gift!

This prank takes a lot of skill, dedication, and wrapping paper. Try wrapping everything in a room in wrapping paper. It may take many hours to accomplish, and there will probably be a few paper cuts involved in the process, but the reactions will be worth it.

gift wrapped bedroom prankgift wrapped bedroom prank
u/Carley536 via Reddit

One Reddit user pulled this prank on their sister in 2017 and posted about it, saying, "her face was priceless when we got home from the airport at 2 a.m., and she walked into her room to find this…" That is one way to welcome home family for the holiday season.

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On Today’s Forecast: Rain!

A gag gift may not be the best to receive, but it is definitely the most fun to give. This next prank will take some serious James Bond skills to construct. Buy a holiday card that is big enough to hold a straw inside it. Then, insert two holes along the bottom edge of the card.

funny gag gift prankfunny gag gift prank
Nextraker via YouTube

Put liquid, anything from water to soda, into the straw and then stick an earplug into one side of the straw. Attached to the earplug will be a string, which will then be placed through the holes that were cut out. Then, staple the string down. Whenever the card is opened, it will unleash the liquid from the straw!

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Concrete Jungle

One sister made the way she felt about her brother very clear with this hard-to-beat prank. She gave him his gift, except it was inside a concrete block. In her note, she wrote, "Thinking of Christmas gifts gets harder every year, but here is some concrete evidence that you're my favorite brother!"

concrete present prank hammerconcrete present prank hammer
u/Sbflood via Reddit

She continued the message, "I hope nothing weighs you down this coming year, and it's the best yet. You rock!" She was also nice enough to gift him a hammer so that he could open his gift. This is one creative way to mix things up at the White Elephant exchange.

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Smell Ya Later!

After giving this prank, there is a chance that friends and family may never speak again. Sometimes the risk is worth the reward, though. This prank is best done in something like a tin can that can keep smells locked tight inside. So, find a tin can and empty everything that's inside.

stink bomb prank ideasstink bomb prank ideas
Nextraker via YouTube

Then, spray the most disgusting smell ever inside and quickly close it. Now, all that is left to do is wait until the present is opened. When it is, it will unleash the worst smell ever - and probably a very angry gift recipient. This is a prank for only the boldest and bravest of pranksters.

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Make Some Noise Tonight

If any prankster is a fan of jump-scares, then this is the prank meant for them. In order to accomplish this task, it will take some engineering skills. First, tiny party poppers must be disassembled, so the noisemaker is separate from the rest of the contraption.

Noise Popper Box PrankNoise Popper Box Prank
Nextraker via YouTube

In the tiny gift box, staple a noisemaker to each side. Make sure the strings protrude because they will be tied together and attached to the lid. When the gift receiver is excitedly opening their gift, they will take off the cover, and bam! The noisemakers will go off.

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A Surprise for the Sommelier

Every family has a cousin, uncle, or aunt who will not stop talking about wine. They always ask to taste-test the bottle at a restaurant or bring their own bottle of wine to family events because they are picky about what they will drink. This is the perfect prank for them.

Wine Box Cereal PrankWine Box Cereal Prank
Nextraker via YouTube

Begin by tying a knot at the end of a string, then staple it onto the bottom of a gift box. Make sure that the package is in the shape of a bottle so that it looks like they will be receiving wine. Then, tie the rope to the lid of the gift. Fill the box with anything that will make a mess, and the prank is ready.

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All Tied Up

Robin Thicke once sang, "I'm all tied up," which is precisely what this present will be crying out after completing this prank. This prank creates the most complicated and annoying obstacle to opening a gift. Take a bag of new zip ties and tie them around the already-wrapped present.

Zip Tied Present PrankZip Tied Present Prank
@chris_jones1984 via Instagram

The gift recipient will have to take out a pair of scissors to make their way through the zip ties, also known as cable ties. One sister did this prank on her brother and wrote on a Facebook group, "Just finished wrapping my brother's Xmas present… game on bro." It certainly is!

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Banding Together

Every household has some staple items that are simply never used. This holiday season, there is an easy solution to that. Use these everyday items to make gift-giving the best gag of the year. For example, if extra rubber bands are lying around, that is one perfect way to liven up present-exchanging.

rubber bands prank ideasrubber bands prank ideas
@joannastrongart via Instagram

Give an already-wrapped present an additional layer of rubber bands. It will make opening the gift more difficult and hilarious for everyone in the family. Similar to the cable ties idea, it is another fun way to prank loved ones. This is an excellent gag for family members that love solving puzzles.

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Showered With Gifts

This prank is one way to shower friends and family. Literally. It is an easy-to-accomplish prank for those interested, making it accessible for even the most amateur pranksters. Take an empty box, wrap it to make it look like a real present, and then put a full water balloon within.

Water Balloon Present PrankWater Balloon Present Prank
Nextraker via YouTube

For the prank to work correctly, do not tie the water balloon. Keep the end of the water balloon out. Close the lid with it slightly out so that when the gift receiver excitedly opens it, they will be soaked with water. Make sure to stay out of the splash zone with this one!

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Roll Up to the Party

Everyone loves a surprise, and the wonders will keep rolling out with this prank. To start, all that is necessary is a toilet paper roll and various gifts that can be rolled up. Then, slowly unfurl the toilet paper before getting to the very end, and start rolling it back up again. The next instruction is essential.

Saran Wrap Gift PrankSaran Wrap Gift Prank
Partygames09 via YouTube

When rolling the toilet paper back again, insert the presents, like lotto tickets or gift cards, into the toilet roll. Then, the best part will come afterward. Watch the recipient's excitement as they continue to unroll gift after gift in the toilet paper. Flush for a good time!

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Locked Up

For any prankster who is also a fan of impossible puzzles, this idea is the right one to try on family and friends. It takes the same concept of the rubber bands and cable ties pranks to an even more extreme level. After gift wrapping a present, wrap a chain around it and padlock it shut.

best padlock prank ideasbest padlock prank ideas
u/Tooty_frooty via Reddit

Only the most clever people will be able to figure out how to break the lock to get to their gifts without a key. The rest will have to hope for some magic or work on their begging skills to crack this case. Even Harry Houdini would have trouble figuring this one out.

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Goo-D To Open

Do not be afraid to get a little messy to accomplish this gift-wrapping prank idea. It is slime time! Slime has become all the rage with the younger generation today, so parents probably have it already in their house. If not, it is easy enough to make D-I-Y slime or purchase it from any store.

Pink Slime prank ideasPink Slime prank ideas
Gillian Bower via YouTube

Once the present is gift-wrapped, cover it with saran wrap or place it in a plastic bag for protection. Then, put it in a bucket of slime. Whoever the gift is intended for will have to dig through mountains of goo to retrieve their present. Get ready to get slimed.

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Out From Under

Get ready for a major cleanup after this prank is completed. When putting all the gifts under the Christmas tree or near the fireplace, this gift will have to be given a little more TLC than the others. Instead of a box, a gift bag will be the best thing to use.

Gift Bag Cereal PrankGift Bag Cereal Prank
Nextraker via YouTube

Take the gift bag and cut a hole into the bottom of it. Then, place it wherever it will be left on display. While the bag sits there, fill it with anything from an entire box of cereal to cat litter to glitter. When someone finally picks it up to "open" it, they will be left with a big surprise and a much bigger mess.

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The Thrill of the Hunt

Have a clue? This gift-giving prank will test the wits and probably the patience of loved ones. Make an elaborate scavenger hunt for family members, so they have to work extra hard to get to their gift. This is the ideal prank for pranksters who love a challenge.

Scavenger Hunt diy ideasScavenger Hunt diy ideas
Keshalish via YouTube

Since it requires a lot of thought beforehand, it is not something that should be left to the last minute or done half haphazardly. People will have to put their thinking caps on to get to the bottom of this case. They will have to become Sherlock Holmes for this holiday season.

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Up, Up, and Away!

Make sure that whoever opens this next prank does so indoors. Otherwise, they will risk losing the gift entirely! This next prank takes inspiration from the Pixar movie, Up. Attach the gift to a balloon, or balloons, filled with helium. Then, stuff everything into a big enough box. 

helium balloon funny prankhelium balloon funny prank
Partygames09 via YouTube

When the gift recipient opens the box, the present will float away. They will have to use their quick wits to grab their gift to open it. So, be sure to do this in a contained area. Otherwise, the gift may float into the sky... never to be seen again!

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Wrong Side Up

For any prankster who attempts this one, be sure to stay far away when this "gift" is opened because things will get messy. Place any type of plastic container on top of a large piece of wrapping paper. Then, fill it with any liquid, from water to root beer to milk.

Liquid Container Present PrankLiquid Container Present Prank
Nextraker via YouTube

After the container is full, wrap the remaining paper over it. While it waits there, it will look like the gift is upside down, so whoever picks it up will think to themselves, "Hmm, I should turn this over." Once they do, that is when the liquid will come pouring out! Mission accomplished.

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Better Luck Next Year

This next idea is the Dad joke of pranks. No liquid, cereal, or crazy setup is needed to get some laughs. All that is needed is a card and a pen. Easy enough! Take a card and write on the outside of it, "four out of five people get money in their Christmas cards."

funny christmas card diyfunny christmas card diy
Sh*tMax via Imgur

Then, on the inside, write "Merry Christmas, #5." Immediately, they will realize they are the ones who are not getting the money. If doing homemade is not doable, then cards like these are available to purchase on sites like Etsy. Either way, this prank is guaranteed to get a laugh -and probably a groan or two.

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When in Doubt, Add Yarn

The Venn diagram of those who knit and those who love to pull pranks may be small, but this is one way to get the blood boiling of family members. If there is unused yarn lying around the house, then it can be used to completely cover an already gift-wrapped present.

yarn gift wrapping ideasyarn gift wrapping ideas
@doodlesinwool via Instagram

A pro tip for those who want to try this prank is, at the beginning of the process, to tape the end of the yarn to the gift so that it does not unravel on itself. Those who have to unwrap the gift will have to get through yards of yarn before they can see what they got.

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Melting Away

For those that are pranksters and know how to weld metal, then this is the perfect prank idea. Joshua Schol fits the bill. The Brit went viral in 2018 for his unconventional gift-wrapping method for his brother, Luke. He had welded his brother's Christmas present into a steel box (below).

viral christmas gift prankviral christmas gift prank
Luke Schol via Facebook

This meant that the only way for Luke to know what he got was to figure out a way to melt the metal. He teased his present, saying, "Only my Mom and brother know what's in the box, but I'm pretty sure it's going to be the biggest anti-climax." This prank went above and beyond, as far as we're concerned.

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Need a Tissue?

Since it is wintertime, plenty of tissue boxes will be scattered throughout the house. This prank will put a box or two into good use and provide plenty of surprises. Open the box from one of the sides and then empty out about half of its contents - but keep them to the side for later.

Tissue Box Present PrankTissue Box Present Prank
Partygames09 via YouTube

Take the presents and put them into the tissue box. Afterward, reinsert all the tissues back into the box and glue it back up. Now the fun is just beginning. Whoever gets the gift will think they have only received a tissue box. What a bummer! They have to start taking out all the tissues to see what really is their gift.

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The Glue That Holds Everything Together

Similar to the tape prank, this idea uses the element of surprise and deception to its advantage. After a gift has been perfectly wrapped and is ready to go under the tree, this is when the action takes place. Take a bottle of glue or a gluestick and place it all over the present.

glue stick gift wrappingglue stick gift wrapping
Kanin Bailey via YouTube

The next part is the best bit of everything. When it is time to unwrap the presents, it will be a complete riot to watch friends and family try to unwrap a gift while their hands keep getting stuck. It may result in a broken nail or two, but mission accomplished!

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Unwrapping Until Tomorrow

This gift will take a lot of patience and a lot of saran wrap. Take any gift. Then instead of putting gift wrapping on it or doing a complicated contraption with a ton of boxes, the solution is simple. Wrap the gift in endless amounts of saran wrap.

saran wrap ball pranksaran wrap ball prank
@visionarykim via Instagram

It is the biggest tease of a present because it will be easy to see what the gift is - it is actually getting to the gift that will be difficult. The receiver will have to claw their way through insane amounts of saran wrap to use their present. That's a wrap!

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