Typical retirement gift worth only £2.17 for every year worked

25th August 2015


The average retirement gift is worth just £2.17 for every year of work, a new study has found.

Despite putting in years of service, retirees can expect to receive a gift worth around £101.89 when they leave the world of work behind – the equivalent of just £2.17 for each year of the average 47-year working lifetime.

The research, by Skipton Building Society, also revealed that the days of receiving the traditional carriage clock are over, with 31% getting nothing more than a handshake. A further 7% were only given a card.

And while 55% of people were over the moon with the leaving gift they received, almost one in twenty felt let down by their company after receiving a bad gift. Some of the worst retirement gifts on the list included a thank you letter with the former employee’s name spelt wrong and bottles of wine been given to retirees who don’t drink alcohol.

17% weren’t afraid to admit they weren’t happy with the present they received, with a quarter of those even telling their boss exactly what they thought of it. Meanwhile, almost one in twenty confessed to selling their unloved gift online.

The research found gift vouchers are the most popular retirement gift, followed by a bunch of flowers, a personalised gift and something for their home. But some lucky retirees will receive a night away, tickets to the Formula One and an all-expenses paid party.

Although, 77% believe companies are now more likely to put their hands in their pocket for a round of drinks and a leaving do, than buy a nice gift. Six in ten put this down to people no longer staying with companies for their entire working lifetime, while another 44% believe companies don’t value their staff like they used to.

Rebecca Willey, Skipton’s corporate communications manager, says: “After years of working, particularly if you have done a long term with the same company, most would expect a nice gift, or something special to wave them off into their retirement.

‘’Entering retirement is a huge milestone, and most would expect some sort of recognition for not only the work they have put in over the years, but also to celebrate reaching the landmark event in their lives.”

Top 10 worst retirement gifts

  1. Nothing
  2. A thank you letter with their name spelt wrong
  3. Two bottles of wine, when they don’t drink
  4. Just a thank you card
  5. Miniature porcelain animal
  6. A book
  7. Cutlery
  8. A plant
  9. An Invite to the company’s annual Christmas party
  10. A clock radio

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