Nine Easy Ways to Have a Stress-Free Holiday Season
We know shopping for the holidays can be a drag, so we put together some thoughts and suggestions. Regardless of who and where you buy from, we want you to be as stress-free as possible this holiday season.
1) Aim for Mondays, Tuesdays & Wednesdays
According to data from GGP, the most peaceful days to shop at the mall are Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, when foot traffic is just 12% of weekly traffic. Fewer crowds means you can get in and out headache-free.
2) Plan ahead for shipping deadlines.
Remember that the big postal carriers like FedEx and USPS get swamped for the holidays. Check out the USPS and FedEx holiday shipping deadlines so that you can make sure you get your gifts under the tree in time!
3) Look for gift wrapping options
Here’s your go-to list for stores that offer free or inexpensive gift wrapping online or in stores.
4) Shop before Black Friday
You also might be surprised to know that Black Friday isn’t necessarily the best day to find the deals on those gifts you’ve had your eyes on for a while. Lowest prices of the season for some of your must-haves often come before or shortly after Black Friday.
5) Want a quick and easy stocking-stuffer? Here are some of the best gift-card deal-hunting resources out there:
Sometimes companies will give you a percentage off of your gift card purchase (aka free money)! Besides scanning your favorite sites to see if they’re offering these incentives, you can also check out sites like Raise, where you can buy discounted gift cards.
6) Use these sites and apps to save time and money:
Download the Google Chrome “Honey” extension, which will automatically apply the best coupon code to your cart and could save you big bucks this holiday season.
When ordering online, check out Shopzilla or PriceGrabber to make sure you’re getting the best price on the internet.
Apps like ShopSavvy and BuyVia are also great and let you scan barcodes in stores to compare prices or get discounts.
7) Familiarize yourself with the return policies
With all of these doorbuster prices, make sure you’re familiar with the store’s return policy. Some stores will only reimburse you with store credit and some won’t take refunds at all. This article can give you some insight on some of the best and worst return policies.
8) Look at gift guides
Unsure what to get that special someone? Want to surprise the little one (even though they already have a fifteen page list to Santa)? Gift guides are really great ways to get creative and unique inspiration for every person on your list. Check out some of our favorites: Nintendo Parachute Home Consumer Reports
9) Get it done early!
1 million Americans have already finished their holiday shopping, while 34 million have already gotten a head start, according to a survey done by CreditCards.com. Don’t be one of the 30% who admit they won’t be done until Christmas Eve.
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