Christmas Shopping Tips For People Who Hate to Shop
—Shop early and shop online. Why? Because you’ll be less likely to spend as much money. The last thing anyone needs on Christmas Eve is to find themselves desperate and standing in a jewelry store with a sales clerk rubbing their hands together in glee because they know they have an easy mark. Last minute shoppers tend to do two things: buy things they never intended to when they left home, and spend too much money because of the pressure to buy something, anything, that will bring a smile to face of the person they love.
Online shopping was made for people who hate shopping because it’s so easy and allows you to thoroughly research everything before you buy it. The Internet offers endless ideas and is far less stressful than fighting traffic and wandering around a big mall with all the other last-minute shoppers.
—Make a list. Make a list not only of what you need to buy, but the people you need to buy for. If you work in an office, do you exchange gifts? Are you the boss and expected to buy your closest employees a gift?
The easy part is knowing who you are buying for. The tough part is figuring out what to buy. Go to a search engine and type: “gift ideas for” and plug in the age and gender of the person you are looking to buy for. It’s a beautiful thing. You’ll get site after site offering help coming up with that perfect gift.
—Compare prices. Once you know what you want, compare prices to find the best deal. Prices on high-end items can fluctuate by hundreds of dollars. It’s worth it to spend a bit of extra time doing research before plugging in your credit card information.
—Watch those shipping costs. Sometimes an online retailer will give a low-ball price, then charge an exorbitant amount in shipping, which can knock you off your budget. Many retailers, especially around the holidays, include free shipping or provide free shipping if you spend a certain amount. Sometimes there are restrictions.
—Will it ship on time? On Christmas morning, no one wants the person they love most in the world to open an empty box with an I.O.U. in it. It does happen and it’s not a pretty site. Make sure the item you order is in stock and will ship in time for Christmas delivery.
—Purchase only from reputable companies. Nowadays, ordering online is pretty safe and reliable, but it’s still a good idea to make sure you are buying from a reputable company. Most online companies are rated for their reliability. Pay attention to those ratings as they can help you to avoid a lot of heartache.
—Have the gift sent to a friend or relative. When the UPS man delivers your present, it’s probably a good idea not to have the recipient sign for it. Have your gifts delivered to a trusted friend or relative and make certain you tell them your plans.
Christmas shopping doesn’t have to be a stressful thing if you plan ahead and set up a budget.