The holiday shopping season is a wonderful time of year for those who love the joy of gift giving, but buying all those gifts can bring some stresses, and it’s important to minimize them in order to fully enjoy the spirit of the holidays. Doing a little research, planning and even considering a few innovative gift ideas can help consumers with both savings and peace of mind as we usher in the close of the year.
According to Forbes.com, deciding ahead of time on a specific amount to spend on each individual is a great way to get started, and using cash and debit cards instead of credit cards will assist with both staying on budget and eliminating any regrets come January. For those who don’t mind spending and just need a unique idea, another interesting thought is to attend a local fundraising auction. The end result can be an imaginative gift and a terrific deal, with the purchase having benefited the local community. On the other hand, some gifts can be absolutely free while providing a deeply personal touch that simply can’t be store bought. The source suggests designing a homemade calendar comprised of family photos, giving gift certificates for helping with household chores or providing a day of leisure, or creating handmade cards, which adds the additional benefit of a shared parent-child activity and bonding experience.
Other free ideas include the gift of services, from babysitting to tennis lessons, or even volunteering in the community at places such as assisted living centers, according to Parenting.com. The source also proposes family activities like apple picking in lieu of presents, which can lead to new family traditions. For those who do have families, and especially young children, the end of the year finds many sales on items like cribs and toys. Additional money can be saved by using energy-efficient holiday lights.
Choosing a specific gift before heading to the stores and then researching which retailer is offering it at the best price is another great strategy, according to The Wall Street Journal. This is especially important if the purchaser realizes that a particular gift on the list is simply mandatory. Smart phones are also an excellent ally when it comes to finding the best deals, says the source, as many stores detail their sales on their own shopping apps and also state which items they have in stock. The time of day or week can also be significant, as sales tend to occur on weekends or during weekday lunch hour time blocks–and those prices can be even more deeply discounted with coupons and codes often found online.
We at William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty wish you every success in navigating the shops this year and a very merry holiday season.