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How To Shop Smarter and Save This Christmas

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Shop smart for Christmas

Between socialising and buying gifts, Christmas is the most expensive time of year. However, we´ve got some tips on how you can shop smarter and save money.

With Christmas and Black Friday only weeks away, retail spending is about to go through the roof.

Gifts aside, the cost of socialising and other activities during this period makes Christmas the most expensive time of year.

However, before you or your partner even open your wallets, we´ve got some tips on how you can shop smarter and save money this Christmas.

Organise Yourself

First, create a list of all the people – friends, family, work colleagues – you need to buy for, what you want to buy each person, and then stick to this list.

By creating a list and buying only the gifts on your list, it will help you manage your budget, reducing the risk of overspending by eliminating spontaneous and continuous gift buying.

If you put together your list early enough, you may even have time to shop around to find the best price for each item.

Buy Online

Rather than racing around shopping malls with your Christmas list in hand, make your life easier and buy your gifts online. In addition to the fact that you don´t even need to leave your home, contend with crowds, or fight for a parking space, the best thing about shopping online is that it´s almost always cheaper than buying in store.

Shopping online puts all the prices at your fingertips so you can always find who is selling the item at the lowest price.

When it comes to convenience, availability, and low prices, one-stop shopping e-commerce sites such as Amazon are a popular choice for many. However, in many countries, if you order from Amazon, for example, you may need to pay import fees and taxes on items, in which case it may be cheaper to buy the item locally or from a local online store instead.

Look Out For Sales and Coupons

Every retailer – physical and digital - is trying to attract the attention of consumers, which means there is a lot of retail competition. This is great news for shoppers.

To entice customers to spend their Christmas pounds at their store or site, retailers frequently offer discounts and deals. Many online stores ask you to sign up to their newsletter and get 10% off of your first purchase, or they might offer customers free shipping. Many physical retailers these days even have pre-Christmas sales.

Keep an eye out for members discounts, newsletter subscriber discounts, two-for-one promotions, bonus-gift-with-purchase offers, one-day sales, and special evening events.

Check Shipping Costs and Delivery Times

One important thing to note when shopping online is that the lowest advertised price may not actually end up being the cheapest. For example, an item with the lowest price may end up costing you more after shipping costs have been added. The item, therefore, may be cheaper in store or cheaper to buy from a competitor who has a higher retail price but offers free shipping.

Additionally, before placing your order online, make sure that your items are in stock and can be delivered before Christmas. If you´re well organised and place your orders well in advance, you may also be able to select a slower shipping method than the “next day delivery” option, which is cheaper and allows you to save on shipping costs.

Here´s to smarter Christmas shopping!

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Warning: Late repayment can cause you serious money problems. For help, go to moneyadviceservice.org.uk. Representative example: APR 1270% if borrowing £400 for 4 months. Interest rate: 292% p.a. (fixed). Total amount repayable: £665.48 by four instalments of £166.37. Maximum representative APR: 1604% if full loan repaid after 7 days.