I recently moved to a foreign country and I made a small group of friends using a Whatsapp group chat. I also happened to have birthday next month after I moved here and invited them all. Since I am not close friend to anybody, nobody bought me a present but she still bought me a present and I was very grateful to her to receive at least one birthday present.

Now her birthday was recently and to prepare myself I bought her a present (nothing big). On her birthday, I learnt she is not celebrating it because she is having exams and probably going to celebrate later. It's been a month and doesn't look like she is going to celebrate this year.

Since it is just a social group, we usually meet at public places. I have never yet visited her, nor know her address, so I cannot parcel the present.

What would be an appropriate way to give the present to her to express my gratitude?

  • This is an opinion based question, you should decide if you want to give it to her or reuse the present for someone else/yourself. If you really want to give it to her, you can send her a message asking her if she's planning to have a b'day party anytime soon. If she's not, you can tell her that you've been holding on to her present for a while now so ask if she's okay with you sending the same to her house and request for her address.
    – svj
    Mar 25 '18 at 3:41
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    Welcome to the site! Unfortunately, I have to vote to close this question as off-topic because unfortunately, this question appears to be asking “What should I do?”, which the community has determined to not be a good fit for Interpersonal Skills Stack Exchange. We can’t decide for you what to do; after you determine what you want to do, we can help you with your goal, but we can’t make these decisions for you. Sorry.
    – Mithical
    Mar 25 '18 at 6:47
  • @ArwenUndómiel Thanks. I am not sure if it makes it on-topic here, but I want to ask "how to do it". I have already made my mind but I want to make it least awkward.
    – NoDrama
    Mar 25 '18 at 10:44

You have contact with her on WhatsApp so tell her you got her a present and would like to give it to her. Ask for either an address to deliver it, or a place to meet up to hand it over. You can even let her know you will be there to celebrate properly with the rest of the group after her exams but that you wanted to give her the present now anyway.

It appears you are thinking that a birthday present should only be given at a formal party, but this really isn't necessary.

Depending on the type of relationship you have, she may not wish to give you her address, so that could rule out the first one. And if she is wary of meeting people alone, then a public place allows it to be a low pressure environment.

Don't over think it.

  • This. No other answers required. Just find a way to give her the gift. Message her on Whatsapp outside of the group chat. If, in fact, you like her as more than a friend, then this advice is even better. But anyway, just do it. Or, conversely, you could send it to me. I'm sure I'll find good use for it or be able to re-gift it ASAP, either way.
    – A.fm.
    Mar 25 '18 at 0:39
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    Hey, thanks for the answer! Can you please explain exactly why you think that this is a good idea? Why do you say to take this course of action? What’s the thought process behind this answer? As this currently stands, this is essentially a “Try this!” answer. We require that answers provide some sort of explanation for why they are suggesting this solution, and unfortunately, at the moment this answer doesn't appear to do that.
    – Mithical
    Mar 25 '18 at 6:49
  • Thanks Arwen - expanded a wee bit on this, so include my reasoning and make it a bit more IPS-y
    – Rory Alsop
    Mar 25 '18 at 9:18
  • Her exams are probably over already. Doesn't look like she is celebrating this year. Anyway I feel weird asking for address for a small present. I feel she will get high hopes and disappointed later.
    – NoDrama
    Mar 25 '18 at 12:04
  • What you feel here is possibly the issue - which is why I said to not over think it. Why would she get high hopes? If you tell her you have an amazing present, then fair enough, but saying you have a small gift should set expectations pretty well.
    – Rory Alsop
    Mar 25 '18 at 12:06

The best approach would be to contact her on WhatsApp tell her you got her a present and was waiting until she celebrated her birthday to give it to her, but since it's been a month you decided to give it to her personally better and just plan to meet her and give her the gift, have a coffee/beer and discuss life. This will strengthen the relationship between both of you and you being in a foreign country it really pays off to have close friends to confide in etc...

Based on experience living abroad in several countries.

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