Last Minute Shopping Tips From a Procrastinating Idiot
So I must admit, I am that idiot. But in my defense I spent a week in Europe at the end of November, then was racing cars the first weekend of December, so the holiday shopping season kind of got away from me.
As did all my shopping money.
This is Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen, where they grow Christmas Spirit for export.
This is the car I was racing/spending money on instead of shopping.
So now I have to squeeze all my shopping into just a few days before the big one because my next paycheck comes on 12/22. Last year I thought I had waited till the last minute, but this year I cut another week out. Luckily I am an expert at doing things at the last minute. Last year’s last minute holiday shopping tips still apply, but here are some new ones:
- Stagger the schedule – Compare a list of who you want to get presents for with your social calendar and postpone buying gifts for people you won’t see until after Christmas. This way you can minimize what you buy while crunched for time and take advantage of after-Christmas sales.
- The children, think of the children – Nobody enjoys opening presents more than kids. If you can’t get presents for anyone else in your life, just make sure the little guys and girls in your life have boxes to open.
- Shop early or shop late – There are some places I try to avoid completely during this season but if you must shop Walmart or the like, get there when they open. The first hour or so is usually the best time to avoid the crowds. If that doesn’t work for you, take advantage of the extended holiday hours some retailers have. Often times people forget these places are still opened at 11pm and you can have the place mostly to yourself.
- BOPUIS – Buy online pick up in store will allow you to maximize your time in the actual store. I did a good piece last year on stores offering buy online,pick up in store service. As far as I know the only major retailer to recently get on board is Home Depot.
- Online offers fast as email – Don’t be afraid to shop Groupon or LivingSocial and the like. Print the gift, buy a nice card and put the printout inside. Done!
- Hit ‘em where they ain’t – Don’t be afraid to shop places most people would look for gifts. Try the grocery store, drugstore, or hardware store; all these places stock up on gift-able inventory for the holidays.
That’s it. Thinking too much about the mad dash I’m going to make Thursday morning will keep me up at night, so best to sign off now and save my sanity.
Oh yeah, and Happy Chanukah, I discovered this year that I am ¼ Jewish, just like Harrison Ford.
Have any tips for last minute shopping? Share them with the rest of us procrastinators in the comments!