Kris Kringle - Generate Names and Learn How To Play

Did you know that “Secret Santa” is known as “Kris Kringle” in other parts of the world? Ireland and parts of Canada refer to the time honored tradition of secretly exchanging gifts at Christmas time as “Kris Kringle.” But no matter how you refer to it, it is still played the same way around the world.

Start a Secret Santa Gift Exchange

Although there are some variations on the rules of the gift exchange game, a certain core set of rules to Kris Kringle games remains the same:

  • A group of people choose each others names randomly without telling who they got.
  • Each person buys the person they picked a gift, and likewise the person who picked their name buys them a gift.
  • The gifts are exchanged on an agreed upon date for the whole group, and everyone’s Secret Santa / Kris Kringle is revealed.

This is also true when you decide to organize a Kris Kringle gift exchange on, the leading gift exchange generator website, however Elfster makes it a little more fun, and a lot less work -- For Free!

Playing Kris Kringle on

  1. Sign up for free on
  2. Decide who you want to invite to play Kris Kringle; when the gift exchange will take place; what the spending limit is going to be, and any other specific rules you want to include in your Secret Santa.
  3. Elfster will then email everyone on your guest list an invitation with the details you specified and will keep track of who’s responded and who hasn’t.
  4. The other participants sign up for free on and create a wishlist. Elfster provides links to all the major merchants online for your convenience but you can search for anything you can’t find otherwise. Gifts can be purchased directly from your wishlist by your Kris Kringle.
  5. Elfster will draw names randomly and assign everyone a “Kris Kringle” / “Secret Santa”
  6. Players can send anonymous questions to the person they were given so they can get a better idea of what they might like.
  7. Purchase your gift for your Secret Santa Buddy and exchange gifts with each other on the agreed upon date.

Ta da!!!