Mazie BeaversComment

HOLIDAY HELP

Mazie BeaversComment
HOLIDAY HELP

Gift giving is one of the most fun, but most stressful parts of the holiday season. It can be especially stressful if you are on a tight budget like me! Here I will be talking about ways to make your gift steal the show with the least amount of money and the most thought put in to each gift. Here we go! Four of my holiday shopping tips!
1. Couponing & Sticking to Your Budget:
One of the hardest things about buying gifts for others is knowing how much you will spend. I typically stick to a budget for each type of person in my life. So for my close or immediate family, I would spend X amount, and for friends I met in college I would spend Y amount, for example. It is absolutely crucial to stick to your original plan. One way I am able to force myself to not overbuy for those I love, is to set your budget, go to an ATM and only pull out the cash you will allow yourself to spend. But, coupons are my go to. I am the college version of an extreme couponer. I do not purchase anything really without comparing prices at different stores, or looking online for the best deals. Although online sites do offer great coupons, I highly suggest signing up for email clubs or mailing clubs through stores you shop at frequently. If you really are concerned about having your email cluttered up, create an account just for email clubs for coupons. Trust me, you will thank yourself later! If you are shopping in-store, ask the sales reps if there are any deals you need to know about. You will be surprised what kind of deals you get just because you asked a simple question. Lastly, USE YOUR STUDENT ID. I always thought that having my ID on me would not really help me in the long run. Boy, was I wrong! Simply showing the cashier your student ID can get you anywhere from 5%-40% off of your whole purchase at the majority of stores!
2. Timing of Purchase
I will swear by the timing of the purchase. It has become routine for me to figure out stores' schedules of when they put items on sale, clearance, or just have special deals on them. I know Target's pricing schedule like the back of my hand. I know when to go if I want a better deal on one certain item, or what will be being put on a clearance rack if I walk in on a Thursday morning. Switching gears a little bit... Black Friday is known for having the best deals of the year, but let me let you in on a little secret. That is not true. Like... not true at all. In fact, some stores do not change their prices whatsoever but just make big signs that make it look like it is a complete blowout. Don't fall for it, y'all. I warned ya. Do some major research before larger purchases. And use your resources (sales reps, email lists, mailing lists, etc.) to find out when the best time to buy is!
3. It's All About the Wrapping
Honestly, half the time I get presents I pay just as much attention to the wrapping as I do to the gift itself. There is just something about seeing your name on a gift with clean cut wrapping paper, a bow, some string, all the little extra things. It makes a huge difference. If you are not able to purchase a huge gift, make sure it is wrapped neatly. It will give your gift a whole different look. TIP: Stock up on gift wrap, tissue paper, bags, bows, name tags, etc. after Christmas this year. Some stores have Christmas merchandise clearanced for up to 90% off once Christmas is over. You can get some really awesome decorating tools for next year for a great price, to make your gifts look like a perfect 10!
4. Consider Who You're Buying For
I struggle with this one a lot. If you know me, I have really expensive taste. Like if I saw two identical, plain, black t-shirt dresses and one was $10 and one was $70. I would pick the $70 dress with my luck. It is bad, y'all. Sometimes when I am Christmas shopping, I try to pick out gifts that I would like. Which is totally not the point of giving Christmas gifts, but I always try to give things I like too for some reason. When you are deciding on what to get each person on your list, I recommend writing down each person's name and coming up with a simple list of 5-10 things they like or enjoy. You can then use that list to narrow down your search process and find things that THEY will like. It is 100% okay to buy a gift for someone else, even if you hate it, as long as you know they will like it!