Note: We receive a commission for purchases made through the links on this site. Our sponsors, however, do not influence our editorial content in any way.
The holidays are fast approaching, with Diwali already begun and Thanksgiving around the corner. With so many holidays, including shopping holidays, it can be hard to keep track of them all. Following is your 2021 holiday shopping calendar to inform you of all the important dates to remember. Additionally, you’ll find helpful tips for holiday shopping and some shipping deadlines from major shippers.
You should also keep in mind the current supply chain problems in the United States. It may be harder to find certain items for gifts, and prices for many holiday food items have also risen significantly. Experts recommend doing your holiday shopping early to increase your chances of finding what you want.
Thursday, November 4 – Diwali
Decorating for Diwali is always a festive and exciting activity. If you’ve decorated your home for Diwali in the past, you might already have everything you need. But if not, you should try to order important items in advance. Many online shops are selling Diwali items if you can’t find them at a local store.
Thursday, November 25 – Thanksgiving
Shopping for Thanksgiving could be a little more hectic and more expensive this year. There are rumors of turkey shortages and rising prices on other standard holiday meal items. As a result, it’s a good idea to get your shopping done as early as possible. You can save money and ensure you get a turkey by purchasing a frozen turkey; not only are they more readily available, but they are less expensive than fresh turkeys.
Many other items, such as stuffing, pumpkin pie, potatoes, green beans, and cranberry sauce, are available at grocery stores. But, as some are more expensive than others, you can save money by shopping at a less costly supermarket. For example, the same name-brand pumpkin pie filling, stuffing, and cranberry sauce will cost much less at Wal-Mart than at Whole Foods.
You can also save money by asking guests to contribute a dish to the holiday meal. Or, you can order a pre-cooked Thanksgiving meal from several local supermarkets. This can cost a bit more, but it saves you all the trouble of shopping and cooking.
Friday, November 26 – Black Friday
The biggest shopping day of the year is approaching, but many stores are already offering Black Friday deals. What do the experts say about shopping for Black Friday this year? Don’t wait. Get what you want now, regardless of price. Many stores are very understocked on a lot of items. Black Friday is often hectic enough, with hundreds lining up to snag items that are in limited supply. This year will likely be even tougher.
If you are still planning to attempt some Black Friday deals, have a plan. Make a list and prioritize it. Call the stores on Wednesday (since many will be closed on Thanksgiving) to see if the items you want will be in stock on Thursday, and how many. If you are shopping with family, send family members to different stores to maximize your chances of getting what you want.
Saturday, November 27 – Small Business Saturday
Don’t forget Small Business Saturday! Many small businesses have been struggling since the onset of Covid-19. They could certainly use the holiday shopping boost to help them stay profitable.
Sunday, November 28 – Hannukah
Next on the 2021 holiday shopping calendar is Hannukah. The festival of lights begins at the end of November this year, and stores are currently stocked with Hannukah items for decorating your home and table. And, if you’re planning on doling out eight days of presents, there’s no time to waste in shopping. This is especially true if you are ordering items online; deliveries may take longer than usual.
Monday, November 29 – Cyber Monday
Cyber Monday is now the second-biggest shopping holiday, and many online retailers are already promoting deals. This holiday makes it easy to shop from the comfort of your own home, but there is still the risk of popular items being sold out.
Follow these tips to make the most of Cyber Monday, save money, and improve your chances of getting the gifts you seek.
Green Monday is the second-biggest online shopping day. Essentially, Green Monday marks the day when only about 10 days remain for you to order anything and still get it in time for Christmas.
Following are the recommended last days for shipping gifts domestically for Dec. 24 delivery:
Ground: Check the UPS website for a quote.
3-Day Select: Dec. 21
2nd Day Air: Dec. 22
Next Day Air: Dec. 23
Note: UPS says it has suspended its service guarantee on most packages.
The following are the last days to ship gifts within the U.S.:
FedEx Home Delivery, FedEx Ground: Dec. 15
FedEx Express Saver, FedEx 3Day Freight: Dec. 21
FedEx 2Day: Dec. 22
FedEx 1Day Freight, FedEx Extra Hours: Dec. 23
FedEx SameDay: Dec. 24
Here are the United States Postal Service’s recommended “send-by dates for expected delivery” before Dec. 25 in the 48 contiguous states:
Retail Ground: Dec. 15
First-Class Mail: Dec. 17
Priority Mail: Dec. 18
Priority Mail Express: Dec. 23
Note: Ground shipping deadline to Alaska is Dec. 2, First-Class and Priority deadline is Dec. 18, and Priority Mail Express is Dec. 21. For Hawaii, Dec. 17 is the deadline for First-Class and Priority Mail, and Dec. 21 is the deadline for Priority Mail Express.
Friday, December 24 – Christmas Eve
Saturday, December 25 – Christmas Day
Sunday, December 26 – Kwanzaa
Friday, December 31 – New Year’s Eve
Saturday, January 1, 2022 – New Year’s Day
Hope you enjoyed the information presented in this 2021 Holiday Shopping Calendar! Happy Holidays!