If you’re planning to go out and face the mayhem that is holiday shopping, you’ll want to stop here first. It should come as no surprise that scavenger hunt expertise translates well into finding the perfect item. Make the most of your holiday purchasing adventure by shopping with a plan.
The Holiday Havoc
It doesn’t take much to become overwhelmed with all the shopping at this time of year. Even going out for bread seems like you need elbow padding and a mouth guard just to make it safely to the end of the aisle.
The streets are packed, the shops are full, and even the online stores seem maxed out, overtaxed, and virtually empty. Buying gifts can seem like a full on Hunger Games experience.
It doesn’t have to be that way. There are several ways to beat the system if you’re shopping with a plan, and if anyone knows how to get from point A to point B quickly to find hidden treasures, it’s the scavenger hunt guy. Here are a few simple tips to make your holiday shopping less stressful and more rewarding.
Plan Your Purchases
The first thing you want to do is figure out what you want to buy. Just because something’s on sale, doesn’t mean it’s a good deal. Sitting in line for 5 hours in the cold to save $15 on a TV is working for $3 an hour. Why would anyone do that? Sometimes “saving money” isn’t.
We don’t need to buy a bunch of things to show people how much we love them. Finding good gifts is about finding the right thing for the right person, not a lot of things hoping they will feel overwhelmed.
Instead of planning all the stops to hit all the deals, shopping with a plan means thinking about what would be valuable to each person on your list and finding that perfect item. You can really cut down on the holiday madness if you buy a few important things instead of a lot of needless things.
Ask yourself: are you shopping to get a lot of good deals or are you shopping to give someone you care about something that really means something to them? That’s shopping with a plan.
Plan Your Route
Once you know what you’re getting, it’s time to plan your route. It’s not as simple as just going from point A to point B. You’ll have to prioritize.
For instance, which shops open at what times? If one is open an hour earlier, you can start there. Also, which items are limited offers and which are typically in stock? Which items offer deep discounts and which are just a few dollars off? You’ll want to focus on the high priority items – those that are harder to find and have the biggest savings – before you focus on the rest.
Then compare which locations are clumped together and which are farther apart. Plan your route based on which places are highest priority and which are closest together.
Shopping with a plan can turn a high-stress series of events into a streamlined approach that will make your holidays smoother, and your gifts more memorable.