Money & Career

9 tips for stress-free holiday shopping

Photography by Geneviève Caron Author: Canadian Living Credits: Photography by Geneviève Caron

Money & Career

9 tips for stress-free holiday shopping

Remember last year when you swore you would not be shopping for 87 people on December 24? Here are some tips to help you keep that promise.

1. Make a who-to-buy-for list with gift ideas and keep it with you at all times. Update it every evening so that you know what's left.

2. One-stop shop as much as possible. Maybe this is the year that everybody gets books. Or socks. Or cool tree ornaments.

3. If you find a really great gift, buy several for different people on your list.

4. Wrap as you buy. Keep all your wrapping stuff in one big container (even if you're just labelling brown-paper lunch bags).

5. Shop when nobody else is (for example, try Wednesday at 9 a.m.).

6. Shop online. You'll find virtually anything you would at the mall. Many sites offer free shipping for orders over a certain amount and usually deliver within days or even hours.

7. To save yourself trips to the post office, have gifts that you ordered online or from catalogues delivered to your office, not your home, suggests reader Patricia Englund of Saskatoon.

8. Are you taking your kids shopping? Smart Santas avoid mall marathons with toddlers. But if you do bring the kids, don't plan to be out for more than one hour at a time, and think simple: most small children can find gifts for everybody in a drugstore or dollar store.

9. Consider giving charitable gifts on behalf of at least the adults on your list. Most charities send festive cards to "recipients" indicating that gifts have been made in their names.

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Money & Career

9 tips for stress-free holiday shopping