Christmas gifts from clients

What is the best, worst or most bizarre Christmas present you’ve received from a client?

Didn't find your answer?

Christmas is the season for giving… and receiving bottles of red and chocolate from clients. 

Christmas is around the corner and along with the obligatory Christmas card from clients (and apologies for not providing their self assessment information), gifts from Christmas cake to flowers and booze are dropped under practitioners’ Christmas trees. 

It’s also that time of year where accountants and bookkeepers think, “Oh no, not another box of mince pies!”. 

So I’m interested to hear what has been the best, worst or most bizarre Christmas present you’ve received from a client? 

And in the spirit of Martin Lewis’ Christmas present ban for teachers, are you uncomfortable receiving gifts from clients (especially those that expect you to bend over backwards for them in 2024 or forgive their dodgy bookkeeping because they gifted you £30 M&S voucher)?

Replies (29)

Please login or register to join the discussion.

avatar
By Open all hours
18th Dec 2023 11:12

Much rather not have anything. Guess they’re sent with the best of intentions but comments of appreciation & satisfaction when the work is complete are all that matters here.

Thanks (1)
Avatar
By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
18th Dec 2023 11:38

A six-case of red wine from a grateful client whose problem I solved nigh on Christmas.

Later, upon being invoiced for the work, he asked for them back!

I was tempted to return six empty bottles to him.

Thanks (15)
avatar
By FactChecker
18th Dec 2023 11:39

Presumably not intended as a gift but gratefully received ...

... a threat to remove their business from a client that was already shooting up the chart of worst PITA offenders if everything wasn't dropped in order to deal with their (very late) info supplied on Christmas Eve.

An open goal ... and we didn't waste the chance!

Thanks (8)
stonks
By WinterDragon
18th Dec 2023 12:35

Countless chocolates, biscuits and booze from clients. We do have an old school client who sends a handwritten letter in the most beautiful handwriting I've ever seen - we always look forward to that one.
A poorly wrapped bottle was damaged in shipping once so I always say a client had such strong feelings about us they sent us a box of broken glass.

On a sidenote, it's a bit of a shoddy article from The Times. You'd be better giving it a miss and reading what Martin Lewis actually has to say on his blog
https://blog.moneysavingexpert.com/2009/11/is-it-time-to-ban-christmas-p...

Thanks (2)
Replying to WinterDragon:
avatar
By FactChecker
18th Dec 2023 14:13

Yes ... even The Times goes in for lowest common denominator reporting now (or click-bait as it's more generally known).
The whole thrust of the Martin Lewis premise was to avoid gifting that creates an imposition of 'needing to give a gift in return' ... which in any school I've attended is not the presumption being placed on teachers.
Indeed he only uses the word 'teachers' once (in a throwaway remark not germane to the argument) ... and yet what does The Times focus on?

So, Richard, not sure from where you've extracted "Martin Lewis’ Christmas present ban for teachers" or why you think he suggested any form of ban?

Thanks (2)
Replying to FactChecker:
stonks
By WinterDragon
18th Dec 2023 14:51

FactChecker wrote:

So, Richard, not sure from where you've extracted "Martin Lewis’ Christmas present ban for teachers" or why you think he suggested any form of ban?

I regularly listen to the Martin Lewis podcast from his BBC 5live spot with Nihal, I'm sure at some point he will have mentioned teachers specifically and the article makes reference to Martin on Matt Chorley's Times Radio show which I haven't listened to. I don't think Martin is advocating for a ban in legislature or guidance from DoE to ban gifting - it's more about the agreement to not do it.

I find it quite funny how often context or nuance is lost when quoting Martin Lewis by both the media and my clients. I used to think he must have been an idiot by virtue of hearing lots of clients say "Martin Lewis said I'm entitled to [something irrelevant that they are obviously not entitled to]." I finally realised he did, in fact, know what he was talking about when I watched a seminar of his explaining student finance to a room of 17-18 year olds.

Thanks (3)
By ireallyshouldknowthisbut
18th Dec 2023 13:06

Case of this was very warmly received last year.

https://www.thewinesociety.com/product/the-societys-exhibition-vintage-p...

I still have one left.....

Thanks (1)
Replying to ireallyshouldknowthisbut:
Avatar
By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
18th Dec 2023 13:59

It received a very lukewarm reception in the reviews - only 3 stars!

Best wrap up the one you have left and give it to your father-in-law for Christmas.

Thanks (0)
Replying to I'msorryIhaven'taclue:
By ireallyshouldknowthisbut
18th Dec 2023 16:14

I'msorryIhaven'taclue wrote:

It received a very lukewarm reception in the reviews - only 3 stars!

Best wrap up the one you have left and give it to your father-in-law for Christmas.

Well I don't normally spend more than £20 on a bottle so I have no idea how its supposed to taste but its good to me.

Thanks (0)
Replying to ireallyshouldknowthisbut:
Avatar
By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
18th Dec 2023 20:15

I recommend drinking it during inclement weather, in accordance with the age-old adage...

Thanks (0)
Replying to I'msorryIhaven'taclue:
Avatar
By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
20th Dec 2023 09:21

...any port in a storm!

Thanks (0)
Replying to ireallyshouldknowthisbut:
paddle steamer
By DJKL
18th Dec 2023 20:38

Foot?

Thanks (0)
avatar
By snookerbob
18th Dec 2023 14:43

Back in the 1980's I recall a client turning up with a brace of rabbits he had shot that morning!
The senior partner seemed delighted.

Thanks (3)
Replying to snookerbob:
Avatar
By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
18th Dec 2023 15:13

Was that when you worked for Fox & Co?

Thanks (1)
avatar
By SkyBlue22
18th Dec 2023 14:46

One year after a particularly challenging time for a client they sent me the most beautiful bouquet of lilies. I get a lot of alcohol but as someone that doesn't drink, I end up regifting it!

Thanks (0)
paddle steamer
By DJKL
18th Dec 2023 15:56

My dad got the turkey that did not arrive in the 70s- Driver had a van full to deliver but stopped at Drybrough's Brewery to handover one to one of their directors (party distributing , my Dad's client, owned a chain of pubs), driver was offered hospitality, imbibed, forgot about his van and staggered home. Post holidays he returned to collect his van from the Brewery which still had in the back the stinking carcasses of all the turkeys he had failed to deliver before Christmas.

Thanks (4)
Ivor Windybottom
By Ivor Windybottom
18th Dec 2023 18:45

As a young nipper, just starting out in tax, my manager was given a nice house plant.
It was only a little later that people noticed it was actually a cannabis plant! She had to chuck it out.

Thanks (2)
Replying to Ivor Windybottom:
avatar
By FactChecker
18th Dec 2023 19:26

Is that what's called 'planting evidence' (in the hope of a little blackmail later on)?

Thanks (2)
Replying to FactChecker:
paddle steamer
By DJKL
18th Dec 2023 20:39

Surely could have burned it-slowly.

Thanks (2)
Replying to Ivor Windybottom:
avatar
By Yossarian
19th Dec 2023 08:24

Did she receive a visit from the Joint Monitoring Unit?

Thanks (7)
avatar
By Yossarian
19th Dec 2023 08:11

A firm I worked for received a mug from a haulage client, with the company's name printed on it together with a picture of the owner's teenage daughter posing in a bikini. Very bizarre and made us feel quite uncomfortable.

Thanks (2)
avatar
By Leywood
19th Dec 2023 08:17

Diamond encrusted watch from a diamond merchant.

I had to give it back :-(

Thanks (1)
avatar
By Geoff56
19th Dec 2023 09:05

A very sweet, elderly lady client, who had absolutely no idea of my taste in music (mainly rock and folk), gave me a 45 minute CD of classical violin music. I dutifully listened to it once - and only once (although I do still have it).

Thanks (1)
avatar
By bernard michael
19th Dec 2023 09:50

Just received it.
A Round Robin of the client's wonderful family's activities during the year.
I couldn't give a twopenny....................!!!

Thanks (1)
Replying to bernard michael:
avatar
By Yossarian
19th Dec 2023 10:48

I hate those. It's never anything juicy like who's being caught having an affair or young Tyler having his electronic ankle tag removed in time for Christmas.
It's always ''...and as a result little Chloe received her second Nobel Prize, which was nice."

Thanks (2)
Replying to Yossarian:
Tornado
By Tornado
19th Dec 2023 13:30

What a great idea.

The perfect antidote to the Christmas Round Robin ....... a spoof one that is just outrageous enough to be believable, although on reflection, a genuine account of our Family's year would fit the bill exactly anyway.

Thanks (2)
Replying to Tornado:
avatar
By Yossarian
19th Dec 2023 14:32

My late stepfather hated pretentious round robins and one year came up with a suitably outrageous spoof, just as you suggest. Unfortunately I think my mum vetoed him sending it to anyone!

Thanks (0)
avatar
By mkowl
19th Dec 2023 10:23

I got free tickets to see The Wonder Stuff at Shepherds Bush empire a couple of Saturdays ago. Ok that was more the client could not make it last minute and realised there was a Modern Idiot - aka me - who would take up the offer

Thanks (1)
avatar
By Polyglot
06th Jan 2024 19:34

Smoked chicken
Face mask (skincare)

Thanks (0)