It seems year after year more and more sales are hitting the stores earlier than before. January used to always be when most of the best savings could be had but with more people turning to online shopping and starting to buy for Christmas earlier on in the year, the retail industry has had to adapt. In November you an often find many of the retailers slashing prices in the run-up to Christmas. This may be through buy one get one free offer, money off vouchers or percentage savings. Black Friday is said to be the busiest day of the year for Christmas shopping and on this day you will often see cut prices on many products. The following Monday is known as Cyber Monday and this is when the best deals online should happen. So when is the right time to buy? The truth is no one knows exactly. If you want to ensure that you get the product you are after then you may want to shop as easily as you can in November but if saving money is more important, then holding out until closer to the festive period may grab you a bargain.
If you are thinking about starting your Christmas shopping then you may want to consider online shopping. Some people get fed up with the Christmas rush to buy presents and how busy it can get within a few months prior to the big day. You can often pick up some great items in the sales in store but did you know that often they are as good if not better online. If you are buying a number of items you will often qualify for free delivery too.
Another advantage of shopping online is that it makes it easier to compare prices. You can have a look at the price of a product in a number of shops in the space of a few minutes, which may take an hour or so if you were at a shopping centre. Before ordering anything online be sure to have a quick search to see if you can find any voucher codes. You may be surprised just how much you can save by simply entering a code online when you check out and often these offers are not available in store.
Many people worry about delivery when shopping online, especially running up to Christmas, so it is recommended to order products earlier if possible and ensure that they are guaranteed to be delivered before Christmas.
If you have recently been invited to a wedding then you will probably already be planning your outfit. Many people love the opportunity to get dressed up for a wedding but before you purchase your special outfit, you may need to find out a bit more about the big day. If for example, the wedding is going to be outside then you may not want to wear heels. You may have to think about what footwear you are going to be wearing first as some dress etc do not go with flat shoes as well.
Also, think about what time of the year it is going to be. In the UK we can have very unpredictable weather so although you cannot be certain what the weather will be like, you can at least think about if it is summer or winter and dress appropriately.
Find out what the day is going to be like. If it is going to be very relaxed and low key then you may not want or need to go all out of a big hat or fascinator as this may look a bit over the top. If the couple wants to have a colour scheme then they may ask their guests to try and wear something that fits in with this scheme.
It seems that a huge number of retailers now offer their own store cards that work similarly to a credit card but can usually only be used with that one retailer or certain retailers within a group. Very often when we approach the checkout we are asked if we would like to save money by opening a store card. These offers vary from retailer to retailer but often include a percentage off your first shop or next shop, interest-free periods and discounts throughout the year.
Before opting in for store cards it is important to check that you will be able to afford the monthly payments and ideally to pay off the balance before the interest hits. If you were going to be putting your shopping on a credit card then it may be worth taking out a store card as long as the interest is not too high. If you were going to be paying cash, then unless you were going to be saving a lot on the money off they were offering, then you may be better to stay away.
If you have good credit you may be able to get store cards to get the discounts that you may be offered but then transfer the balances over on to a longer zero percentage credit card to allow you to pay it off in time.
Historically the pre Christmas sales always used to start on January, but with companies realising that people tend to spend a lot more of their money in November and January, many of them are opting to start their sales early. This November saw many of the big retailers offering customer huge discounts on their items and tempting people in to early Christmas shopping. This has definitely helped ease the shopping centres in the run up to Christmas and can be great for people looking to spread their shopping out a bit over a matter of a few months.
The issue with buying present that early is you may forget that you have already bought something, find that the prices come down closer to Christmas and you have paid over the odds, or if buying for children, find out that there is a new toy on the market which has suddenly become top of the Christmas list. On the other hand, if you leave you shopping until the last minute then you may struggle to find stock of the item and end up having to either go without or pay over the odds.