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A Guide to Christmas shopping for everyone on your list


Now, you’re probably thinking, Christmas shopping?! After all, it’s only October, it’s also only eight weeks to Christmas. Okay, you’re panicking now. Deep breath in, out…there, that’s better. Alright, mini freak out over? Great, back to the Christmas guide.

Ideally, Christmas shopping plans should begin in September but we’re getting a late start this year and that’s ok. You’ve probably done Christmas shopping many times and you’re thinking, this guide is going to tell me what the latest on-trend items to buy are then you’re wrong.

So without further ado, here are the rules of Christmas shopping (yes there are rules, yes they mostly help you save money).

1. Make a list of all the people you want to buy gifts for.

* Well that was easy enough, or was it? Now that you have your list, go back over it again and remove all the people you don’t really need to get gifts for, like your best friend from primary school you haven’t spoken to in years or that aunt you only see at family reunions who only ever tells you about your weight or lack thereof.

* Alright, list trimmed down to the essentials, now group your list by age or interests, that way you can make one trip to the toy or bookstore and get for everyone in that group instead of four. This also helps you narrow down what you want to get each person.

* Now that you know whom you’re buying for and have an idea what they’d like you to need to assign each person a realistic budget and stick to it. Consider your finances, how you feel about the person, their age and the budget they have for your gift when assigning a value to theirs. This means you probably shouldn’t buy your two-month-old niece a $2000 gift or your favourite aunt who always gets you nice jewellery an item for $10.

2. Shop around.
* There are a large variety of places to purchase gifts for loved ones and doing price comparisons is key to ensuring you get the best deal available. Shopping around also shows you what is available on the market and gives you get ideas for alternative presents to get instead of the usual clothes, toys and household goods. It’s amazing how many great gift items you’ll find in your budget if you take the time to look.

* Buy local. We can’t say this enough. There are many amazing local products and services that make great presents and buying locally supports the economy. So head to the Green Market or check out local Facebook and Instagram pages and get something amazing for your loved ones that 8s locally made.

* Shop online. So you’re probably thinking, shop online? You just said buy local! You should absolutely buy local but there are some items that aren’t produced locally such as electronics and for those items, buying online is often much less than trying to find it locally for three or four times as much. So make a plan of all the things you need that you can’t get here and hit up a Black Friday or Cyber Monday sale and get them for so much less.

3. Go for quality over quantity.

* With the exception of small children who just like having many gifts to open and don’t often care about the costs, most people prefer one or two good quality gifts that will last over multiple items that won’t make it to the new year, so get something they will appreciate but will last long enough for them to appreciate it.

4. Regifting is okay.

* People have very strong opinions on regifting and if you feel like it’s something you just won’t do, then don’t do it but if you have a ton of items that are in good condition or may have never even been used then regift away. Just remember, don’t regift something to someone who is close to the original gifter.

* Should you go the route of re-gifting then ensure what you’re gifting isn’t personalised to you and is in a giftable condition, re-gifting is not an opportunity to toss out your old stuff!

5. Ask parents what to get their kids.

* Sure this is your godchild or favourite younger cousin and you want them to love your gift but when you buy the stuffed toy that only plays the Baby Shark song or the light up toy with the loud music, the kids might love you but their parents will hate you.

* Even if you don’t plan to get an obnoxious present, parents still deserve the right to veto what you get their children. After all, you may get them something their parents don’t approve of and that amazing gift you searched hard for might end up into the trash or at the back of a closet.

Christmas shopping can be done very easily once you remember the rules of shopping which include pre-planning and budgeting your spending. If you do this, you’ll even have time to get a Christmas gift for yourself.

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