With the Christmas rush in full swing, the shopping list can seem never-ending. The key is not to waste time! Find out how to get it all bought quicker with our top 10 tips.
1. Don’t leave it until the last minute
Avoid the temptation to wait until Christmas Eve, unless you’re desperate for bargains. If you come across the right gift when you’re not even looking, buy it. That way, Santa’s elves can start wrapping early.
2. Make a list
Deciding which loved ones to buy for, and how much you want to spend on each person, will help you get to the checkout quicker. Budget accordingly, and you won’t waste valuable time musing over that cut-price cashmere sweater.
3. The early bird catches the worm
Shop at off-peak times. Avoid the lunchtime rush and get to the shops when the doors open. Chances are, you’ll be met by a helpful member of staff and you’ll avoid the long queues.
4. Avoid the High Street
Battling through the crowds can be exhausting, depressing and time-consuming. Head to a shopping centre and choose the department store with the widest choice so you can find everything under one roof.
5. Online shopping
Save time and money by shopping online. All you need is your credit card and you can shop at any hour of the day or night. Don’t waste time idly browsing however, the hours will clock up before you know it. Go straight to a store you’ve used before and you trust, or search for exactly the item you are looking for.
6. Buy in bulk
Get similar friends or family members the same thing, and forget trying to be inventive. No one really wants a wacky, clever gift they are never going to use. If you see a gift you know is good value, and that anyone would like to receive, get 10.
7. Go hands-free
Dress for the task ahead and Christmas shopping will not only be easy, but enjoyable too. Trainers or comfy shoes, a lightweight coat (stores are always overheated in winter), a rucksack so you’re not weighed down with a handbag and even a trolley case will lighten the load, not to mention improve your energy levels.
8. Go the distance
If you’ve set aside a day to get everything, then accept that it will be tiring! When your arms get overloaded with bags and your legs start aching it can be tempting to abandon the rest of your list for another day. Bring snacks and a flask with you, drop bags back at the car, stop for a breather and then soldier on – you’ll thank yourself later.
9. Speed dialling
Sometimes ordering over the phone can be even quicker than going on the internet. A friendly voice can guide you through the stock, suggest similar affordable items if your first choice is sold out, and take away the strain of having to tap into a keyboard.
10. Pass on the pipe dream
You may feel like Scrooge, but sometimes the most well-meaning parent has to be cruel to be kind. Ignore unrealistic hopes of an expensive present and don’t waste time on hard to find requests – save wish lists for Santa’s grotto.