Once again the festive season is upon us, which means that it is time for a spot of Christmas shopping.
Admittedly, Christmas shopping is not exactly the most relaxing of activities. With so much to get done, crowds of people and queues spreading from one shop to another, Christmas shopping can be rather stressful.
But, there is no need to despair. Have a read of our handy guide below for the best ways to achieve stress-free Christmas shopping.
Make a list of everything you need to buy
Sit down and make a list of all the people you need to buy presents for, and set a budget for each person’s gift.
Try to come up with as many gift ideas as possible prior to your trip. That way, when you are at the shopping centre you will know what you need to buy and don’t have to worry about coming up with ideas.
If you are unsure of what to buy someone, don’t go shopping blind. Ask another friend or family member if they can suggest a suitable present for them.
Don’t leave your Christmas shopping until the last minute
Don’t put your Christmas shopping off until the last minute. The closer to Christmas it gets, the busier and more hectic shopping centres become.
Get all your shopping done as soon as you can. It doesn’t matter if you start off buying little bits months before Christmas, the more prepared you are, the less last minute shopping you will have to do.
Try to do as much of your Christmas shopping online as you can. Although it may take some time to navigate different sites to get the best prices. Online shopping is nowhere near as stressful as buying in store.
Plus, online shopping gives you the bonus of buying things that aren’t always available in the shops, like personalised wooden gifts for example.
Although shopping online may seem to cost you more than shopping in person, due to delivery costs. But, think about how much money you are saving on petrol costs, parking tickets your food and drinks costs for whilst you are out.
Choose when you shop carefully
If you have to pop to your local shopping centre to pick up a couple of last minute presents, choose when you go carefully. Certain times tend to be busier and more stressful than others. If possible, avoid shopping at peak time – after school, in the evening and at weekends.
However, don’t go shopping too early in the morning, or you may end up getting caught in rush hour traffic. Instead, aim to get to the shops for around 11am, and make sure you leave no later than 4pm, otherwise you may end up stuck in the evening traffic.
Although Christmas shopping can be stressful, try your best not to get stressed out about it. If the busyness of the shops is getting too much, take a break from shopping. Head to a quiet coffee shop and take a breather. Sitting down for a few minutes will help you to feel less stressed.