The day after Thanksgiving is traditionally the biggest shopping day of the year… known as “Black Friday” because that’s the day that retailers start to make a profit. Of course, with consumer spending down dramatically, it will be interesting to see what happens this year.
At any rate - here are FIVE FOOL-PROOF tips for surviving the shopping crush today and throughout the entire holiday season.
1. HAVE A PLAN OF ATTACK
Holiday shopping can be overwhelming and stressful. Make a list so you know exactly WHO you need to buy for and WHAT you would like to get them. That way you won’t forget anyone and you won’t get sidetracked buying things you don’t need. I also use my camera phone to take pictures of what I’ve bought as well as potential gifts, so I can keep track of it all.
2. DO YOUR HOMEWORK
Look online for sales and printable coupons and sign up for e-mail alerts. I put all promotions and discounts in one envelope so they are easy to find. Also ask in-store about discounts. I was just in Club Monaco and it wasn’t publicized, but they were offering 30 percent off of scarves, gloves and hats.
If you are on a tight budget this year and are worried about overspending, leave your credit card at home and just bring enough cash to buy what is on your list.
3. START EARLY
I’ve never been one of those wait in line at 3 AM to hit the discount chain stores for crazy deals. BUT - I am all for getting to the stores on the early side, so you get parking and the stores are less crowded. You can get more done in less time.
4. DRESS THE PART
I always wear comfortable shoes like ballet flats that are easy to take off if you need to try things on. Layers make it easy to try on clothes and a tank top works wonders… you can try things on over it and don’t have to wait in long lines for the dressing rooms. I also bring a big practical purse.
5. POWER UP
Eating at the food court takes time away from shopping AND who needs to fill up on fattening foods! I bring healthy bars and bottled water so I’m not tempted by the smells of Cinnabon.
Still too much action for you? SHOP ONLINE!!!
Avoid the traffic, the crowds and the lines and do it all from the comfort of your home. Look for savings by typing “coupon”, “promo code” or “discount” into a search engine. Look for sites that offer free shipping. Just make sure you order early enough.