Christmas decorations put out? Check. Holiday cards sent? Check. Ugly Christmas sweater found? Check. Gifts bought and wrapped? …
With Christmas just around the corner, many of us are still scrambling around trying to get ready.
Fortunately, technology has made it so that we don’t have to rush to an overcrowded mall, find a nonexistent parking space, walk for miles in the cold just to get to the entrance, elbow people for the last available item in stock, wait for hours in a slow-moving line, or pay inflated mall prices. Instead, you can sit at your computer with a mug of hot cocoa and get all of your holiday shopping done in a matter of minutes. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when online Christmas shopping:
Give Yourself Enough Time – The biggest downfall of online shopping is that you cannot receive your purchased items immediately. However, this can be resolved easily by allowing enough time for shipping and handling. Even so, last-minute shoppers can still shop online with expedited shipping, but beware that overnight delivery can sometimes cost more than the gift!
- Check Return Policies – Before you pull out your plastic, make sure you are purchasing the correct item. Carefully read item descriptions and return policies, which differ from those of retail vendors.
- Cyber Monday and Other Sales – Who needs the insanity of Black Friday when you can get great deals without the hassle on Cyber Monday? Make sure you take advantage of online deals by looking for promotional codes, which you can find by googling, receiving emailed newsletters from trusted sites, and sometimes even from banners on the site you’re already on!
- When in Doubt, Buy a Gift Card! – Not sure what your loved one wants for Christmas? Order a gift card! This rule applies to all shoppers during the holidays, even if you prefer not to shop online.
Lastly, Christmas is a time for family and friends, not flashy gifts. So, even though you would give them the world if you could, remember even if you cannot afford everything on their wish lists this year that it is your time and presence (not presents!) they value the most.