People hate gifts when the giver tells them it will save them money, according to a study in the Journal of the Association for Consumer Research. On the other hand, being told a gift will save them time, makes the like it.
In the experiment, researchers gave $5 Starbucks gift cards to 200 college students. Half of the gift cards included the message, "I know you've been stressed for money lately. I hope you'll enjoy this gift card in hopes that it will save you some money." The other half said, "I know you've been stressed for time lately. I hope you'll enjoy this gift card in hopes that it will save you some time."
From Ohio State News:
Those who received gift cards intended to save them money had more negative emotions than those who received the cards intended to save them time. In addition, those who received the money-saving cards said they thought the gift-givers believed they were higher-status than themselves.
If there was any bright spot for the people who sent the money-saving gift card, it was that their friends were just as likely to redeem the card as those who received it as a time-saver, Donnelly said.