2021 Last Minute Holiday Shopping Tips

Written By Scott Kessman
Last updated December 21, 2021

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Money Saving Tips
December 21, 2021

Simple. Thrifty. Living.

It seems that each year, retailers start promoting their holiday shopping events earlier and earlier. For some, this has been a great opportunity to get their shopping done early. It’s also allowed consumers to take advantage of sale prices both before and after Black Friday. But what if you missed Black Friday? There is still time to shop. Read on for our tips.

Online e-tailers are promoting holiday shopping and offering great deals on many items. Again, don’t wait too long to purchase what you’re looking for. Take the time to compare deals amongst the different online shops. Some are offering free shipping while others are promoting discounts on various items.

You can also read the reviews about online e-tailors and the products they sell. This can also help you decide where to order from, and whether certain products are worth it.

The major shippers (USPS, FedEx and UPS) have all announced holiday shipping deadlines that differ from previous seasons. Shippers, facing staff shortages, are stating that products might take even longer to ship. The longer shipping times are also because of the massively increased volume of holiday shopping orders. Don’t be caught paying for overnight shipping, consider store pick up instead.

Budgeting for the holidays is also one of the most important holiday shopping tips. And this still holds true in 2021, since many products have risen in price. You should expect to pay more for various items because of product shortages, higher manufacturing costs and higher shipping costs. But if you create a budget and stick with it, you can avoid overspending.

You have to be prepared that you might not find everything you were looking for. And the last thing you want to do is start scrambling to think of other gift ideas at the last minute. Instead, do some research and create a list of alternative options you could get if the first choice isn’t available. This ensures you’ll still have gifts for people without having to spend extra or settle for something you didn’t really want to get.

Many hot-ticket items, such as popular toys, gaming consoles and appliances, are expected to sell out quickly. There will probably be limited numbers of these items, and they typically sell out within minutes. If you haven’t gotten some of these items already, you probably won’t be able to get them later.

Note: One of the major shortages this year is microchips, which are used by many products. Consider this when you start shopping.

Believe it or not, there are some items that you might actually want to wait a bit before buying. For example, hold off on purchasing winter apparel, since many stores aren’t fully stocked yet due to shipping delays. Many stores expect to be stocked by late November, so now is the time buy. But again, once you see the item in stores, don’t hesitate to get it.

During the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, many stores began offering curbside pickup. The function has proven so popular that many stores still offer it, or at least a store pickup option. Ordering online and then choosing store pickup not only saves you money on shipping but also saves you time searching through crowded, chaotic store aisles.

If there are certain stores you really enjoy shopping at, get on the email subscriber list. You’ll be informed of special deals, sales and new product arrivals. Following deal-posting websites can also keep you informed of upcoming sales or the availability of discount coupons.

Scammers love the holidays just as much as everyone else. And there are bound to be plenty of scammers working overtime this year. If a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is. Keep an eye out for counterfeit products, and research vendors you aren’t familiar with before making a purchase.

If you buy something from someone on an online marketplace like Facebook, don’t send money via Western Union or give them your credit card number. Instead, try to meet the person in a public place and give them cash or a check once you see the product.

This holiday shopping season brings with it a lot of uncertainty. Online sales are expected to skyrocket, which could further affect shipping times for all major shippers. High product discounts might be non-existent because of limited supply. In fact, higher prices, not lower, might be the norm for many items. But if you follow the above holiday shopping tips, you stand a better chance of securing the gifts you want the most.

About the Author

Scott Kessman

I possess a strong 20-year background in marketing, digital marketing, and advertising. However, writing has always been a true passion of mine, and after working in corporate offices for many years, I turned my passion for writing into a full-time job. As a contract content writer for the last 12 years, I can craft engaging and informative content about a wide variety of subjects. I have also written and published two fantasy novels and a collection of short stories.

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