Whether you're ready or not, the holiday season is upon us once again. The holiday season is suppose to be full of happiness, cheer and joy. But for many, the holiday end up being stressful and disheartening. I'm here to tell you that they don't have to be, you really can have a stress free holiday and actually enjoy holiday shopping!
My 10 Tips For Smarter Holiday Shopping and Gifting:
1. Avoid the holiday rush by shopping early! You won't have to deal with long lines and cranky holiday shoppers. You also avoid having to spend a large amount of money all at once. By shopping early, the expense is spread out over a longer period of time, which is easier on the checkbook!
2. Shop clearance and sales! I shop for gifts all year long, literally. I shop clearance sales and get great gifts for a fraction of the cost. I save as much as 90%.
3. Think outside of the box! You can find great gifts in unexpected places. You don't have to shop at the "regular" stores like Target, Wal-Mart and the mall. I've found great gifts in grocery stores, swap meets and even Office Depot! These days, grocery stores carry a wide variety of gift items, including gift cards to a variety of retailers and restaurants.
4. Make your gifts! You can make baked items, candles, blankets and so much more at a fraction of the cost. Everyone loves receiving a gift that was handmade with love. Often times, it's the homemade gifts that are most valuable.
5. Shop online! Free shipping, cash back and rebate offers are often geared towards online shopping. Often times you can't get those same deals in stores, so take full advantage of those online bargains. Avoid traffic, crowds and having to pay for gas!
6. Get the Sunday paper! Shop those ads for the best holiday offers. We all know that everyone is trying to get the attention of the shoppers during the holiday season.
7. Make a list and Check it twice! If you know who you are shopping for, it will make your holiday shopping much easier. Forgetting someone and having to make a last minute trip to the mall could be very frustrating and time consuming.
8. Don't be afraid to Re-Gift! It's not as bad as some people make it out to be. As a matter of fact, it can work out great. Especially if you receive a gift ath you know you will never use and you know someone who it would be perfect for! Just don't re-gift it to the person who gave it to you.
9. Win your gifts! Seriously! Enter online giveaways and win some great items that are perfect for gift giving! A couple months ago I won an iPod Touch, it's going to make the perfect gift for my husband. As a blogger, you know exactly how many giveaways there are out there, so go enter.
10. Gift exchange! Talk to your family member about a gift exchange in place of buying a gift for everyone. Chances are, they will be thrilled with the idea. Be sure to discuss and set a price limit that everyone agrees to. Simple and easy.
The holiday season should be about having fun, spending time with family and making lifelong memories. With just a few simple ideas, tips and early planning, it can be all of that ans so much more. Happy holidays from my family to yours!
What do you do to make holiday shopping easier?