According to a 2009 survey conducted by PriceGrabber.com, American shoppers are getting a head start on the holiday shopping season -- 22 percent of shoppers started their holiday shopping in October and 29 percent in November. Not only is this tactic good for beating the crowds, but it's also a way to ensure that you get the gifts on your list.
So how can you stay on track this year, save money, and beat the anxiety of it all? Being a personal shopper for many years, I have learned a ton….so here is your stylist “How To Shop This Season” ideas and tricks….
So just like anything else we need to prep. We need to make sure we are ready before we leave the house with a list. If we are not? Well it’s just a hot money mess. Basically you spend 10 times more then you need and you double your shopping time and stress level. So I found this cute list on Pinterest last night and you have to print it out after you download it for free. So cute and will save you tons of money and time. Try it! Here is the link to download it for free.
Shop from Home
Pull up a chair and have some hot chocolate and shop online in the comfort of your home. Not only are you beating the crowds but you are saving money on gas, and saving your patience from finding a parking spot. Christmas is a time of giving and relaxing so try to shop online if you can. They have amazing deals online look up some deals on groupon.com or livingsocial.com or even retailmenot.com. These places can save dollars and at Christmas time it’s all about saving as many pennies as you can. Also another plus of online shopping is so many are joining the trend of free shipping. So what is better then that? Now you can’t complain about shipping ….so do your research and get shopping. Here are some of my most favorite online shopping sites:
Shop in Unconventional Places
One way to avoid the holiday shopping rush is to avoid the places where people normally do their holiday shopping, like department stores, big-box retailers and malls. Instead, try to support local small business owners, craft fairs and thrift stores. You may find the crowds are thinner and the wares more unique. Sometimes a gift from a unique special boutique or craft store is better then something someone sees all the time on everyone. Really try support your local stores it’s so important. They could use every inch of support for the love of what they do and try to run day by day.
SHOP WITH FRIENDS
Friends support you, either actively or passively (by setting a good example and not tempting you to cheat) when you're trying to make a healthy change, like staying on a diet or budget. So I always love to go shopping with a friend of mine every year. Because I know if I am buying to much she will say…you don’t need to buy that you already got that other item. They help you stay on track and be a supporter. Also sometimes it’s fun to see what they are buying to get fresh ideas. Also just fun to be with a friend goes to dinner and makes a night of shopping.
Use social media. Before you start shopping, start following your favorite retailers on Twitter and Facebook. Many companies offer discounts exclusively to their Twitter followers and Facebook friends. A quick search of their recent posts may reveal money-saving discount codes. This is a huge one! A ton of people only hold big discounts online and offer better more fun items then in their stores. So get on instagram, pintrest, fb, and twitter and find the best of the best deals.
Bring on the envelopes, toss the credit cards. Leave your credit cards and debit cards at home. Allocate an amount of money for each gift, and put that money in separate envelopes marked with the recipients' names. This honestly helps. I hate to spend cash for some reason If I see it leaving my wallet I don’t want to spend it so I can put things back easier at the checkout. This helps you not buying anything for yourself and get a list of people a budget for each person then go shopping. You will feel so much better after I promise. Big difference. Smart shopper.
If you'd like to go shopping with Jen, visit her blog: http://www.jenclydestylist.com.