The holiday season is once again upon us! While it’s a joyful and wonderful time of the year, holiday shopping can also bring stress, especially during a pandemic. But, fear not. Read on to discover the best tips for navigating budget-friendly holiday shopping safely and efficiently.
1. Decide Who to Shop for
First, plan out who you are going to shop for. Have you ever been put on the spot by receiving a gift when you didn’t get something for the other person? Avoid the awkwardness by planning ahead.
When it comes to friend groups, try organizing gift exchange ideas. Get an outside party, like a partner, to virtually organize a “Secret Santa” type of exchange if you can’t meet in person. Everyone can deliver their gifts to the name they are assigned so you don’t have to worry about shopping for each friend. If it’s safe to meet in person, consider a white elephant gift exchange.
What about when it comes to coworkers? Turn to virtual team-building events to safely bring coworkers together during the holidays. A virtual event works great during the current times and also eliminates worrying about what to buy coworkers. Avoid drunken antics at the office Christmas party by instead enjoying team building online.
2. Devise a Budget
Budgets are key to avoiding overspending during holiday shopping. Always set a budget for gift exchanges with friends. You can even discuss gift expectations with partners. When creating a budget, be sure to factor in spending such as giving money to young children for holiday shopping.
A great way to stick to a budget is to find a staple gift item that many people can enjoy. Feel free to purchase several of these items and have them on hand. That way, you’ll never be caught off guard. If you’re crafty, you can include homemade items in your gift stash.
Avoid spontaneous shopping by instead planning out excursions and grouping them together. You’ll save time and gas money and help avoid unnecessary purchases. Remember that many stores now offer curbside pickup to keep shopping safe. Planning ahead will also help you avoid weekend shopping trips, which can be a nightmare during the holiday season.
3. Shop Online
Online shopping might not be everyone’s preference, but it certainly has its benefits. It eliminates gas, traffic, lines, frantically searching for items, and finding out something is out of stock. Online shopping is also a great way to conquer holiday shopping while social distancing.
Overall, online shopping has many benefits. You can search for online coupons and influencer discount codes to watch the numbers in your cart go down. Set price alerts so that you are aware of price drops and the best time to buy. That way, you can get people exactly what they want without breaking your bank.
You can also check ratings and read reviews for online items. Remember, that you can buy multiples of the same item if it looks promising. Be sure to check return policies and calculate shipping and delivery times. Consider delays and be sure to make purchases ahead of time.
4. Find Last Minute Solutions
What do you do if you’re already halfway through December and you haven’t finished your holiday shopping? While cash and gift cards are always useful, giving a more personalized present can make someone feel appreciated. Fortunately, there are quick virtual buys you can make that eliminate waiting for a package to arrive in time.
It might not be the safest time to plan excursions, but you can still give the gift of experiences online. You can give someone a step by step cake class or offer virtual voice lessons. Experiences are also one of the best gifts you can give a partner. Explore ideas such as online guided couples massage or a couples yoga workshop. What’s better than making a beautiful memory together?
5. Plan Ahead
It might already be too late for this year, but there is still useful information you can retain for future shopping. The holidays always seem to sneak upon us, which is both wonderful and hectic. By planning and staying organized, you can avoid last-minute chaos. It might seem silly to start Christmas shopping in July, but it can be very beneficial.
Consider shopping for gifts throughout the year when price alerts are lowest. That way, you can make excellent purchases at the best prices. Summer is a great time to shop for winter apparel, while winter is the ideal time for summer sales.
By shopping during sales and planning ahead, you can enjoy the holiday season without any added chaos or stress.
Copyright (c) 2020 Emma Fischer