The holiday shopping season can be a time of great frustration, but also a time where you get some great deals. While Black Friday might be a ways off, it’s never too early to start developing a sharp strategy to make the most of your time and your money. No matter if you’re a savvy shopper or someone who dreads going to the mall, these tips are bound to help you emerge a holiday winner.
Decide How Much to Spend
Before you look at a sales paper or store website, decide how much money you’ll spend on everyone and everything this year. As you’re making this budget, be sure you keep in mind your other financial obligations and holiday spending. It’s a good idea to budget for more than you think you’ll actually need, that way your finances won’t be hit as hard when you’re all done with your shopping.
Figure Out Where and How You’ll Shop
Once you’ve got your holiday spending budget, decide which stores you’ll visit to get everything you need. Hitting up malls and shopping centers is a good way to get everything on your list in a single location, which is a great strategy for saving gas and not spending time in holiday traffic. If you’d rather do your shopping online, bookmark the business sites you plan on shopping from and keep an eye on them to see if they have upcoming sales or specials to take advantage of. You might have to sign up for a newsletter or mailing list to eligible for discounts, and it’s better to take care of that now rather than the day of the sale when the site might be slammed with online traffic, which could potentially make the site inaccessible.
There are several apps available that can save you a lot of time and money during the holiday shopping season. Do some research online on the best apps, and be sure to ask for recommendations from friends and family who are elite bargain hunters. Apps exist that allow you to compare prices, get up-to-date sales hours and know when items might go on sale later.
Safety is essential no matter if you’re shopping online or in brick-and-mortar stores. Be aware of your surroundings while you’re in store parking lots, don’t carry large sums of cash while shopping and make sure you know how to freeze your debit or credit card in case something happens to it. In regards to online shopping, ensure websites are secure before you enter your financial information. A green lock icon in the address bar means the information you send over the site is secure. It’s also a good idea to scan your computer for malware and viruses before shopping online. Be sure you keep this habit up even after the holidays.
While these tips have little to do with having a better-organized home, Tidy Living hopes they’ll provide you with a more organized Black Friday shopping experience. Just as you have to have a plan when it comes to getting your home in order, the same is true when it comes to getting your finances in order.