4 Benefits to Early Christmas Shopping

You’ve probably complained about this phenomenon yourself: “Christmas shopping seems to start earlier every year!” Perhaps you’ve received an email from your favorite online store advertising their “August Christmas Shopping Deals.” Gone are the days when stores waited until after Thanksgiving to begin selling Christmas decorations and gifts. These days Christmas wreaths go up alongside the Halloween jack-o-lanterns.

But starting your holiday shopping months in advance is actually an excellent approach in many ways. You may avoid a good deal of the infamous Christmas commercialism that Americans so frequently complain about. After all, Christmas is supposed to be about family and friends, a time of peace, joy, and carols. This year, engage in some of that joy to the world and peace on earth by getting the shopping done well in advance.

If you are still not convinced, here are 4 reasons to get your holiday shopping done before all your friends even begin to think about it.

1. Less Stress

Let’s face it, week-before-Christmas shopping is stressful for multiple reasons. There’s the panic that you won’t be able to find the perfect gift for a relative. There’s the confusion that comes from hitting 10 stores in one morning and viewing hundreds of items all at once. It becomes a trivia game to remember a product you considered at the last store and the pros and cons compared with a similar product at the current store.

Probably the most stressful part is navigating the crowds. From jam-packed parking lots to lines stretching to the end of the aisle, the massive influx of people at stores in December can be frustrating. The stress can lead to depression, anxiety, and poor decision-making.

Another way to alleviate the stress is to shop online. Online shopping is easier to track, and you’ll be able to relax in your home while browsing.

2. Saving Money

Admittedly, there are many fantastic deals in December. And no one can gainsay Black Friday prices. But at least planning what you plan to purchase in advance, if not actually buying early, will result in saving money. By planning and shopping early, you’ll decrease the possibility of impulse buying.

Many finance and shopping experts suggest planning out a realistic budget in the summer and using apps to track spending as you shop. It is also helpful to discuss how much you will be spending with family members early in the process. This precaution will ensure that everyone is spending about the same amount, rather than one person showing off with expensive gifts.

The intention behind the gift is much more important than the cost. Giving yourself a couple of months to think about whether a gift is really a good choice will prevent you from spending more than you should have.

3. Guaranteed Shipping

December is notorious for poor shipping, and it only worsens as the 25th approaches. A nightmare Christmas shopping scenario is finding the ideal present four days before the holiday and realizing that it won’t arrive in time. The other option is to break the bank paying for expedited shipping.

Even online stores that do a good job with fast shipping during the rest of the year, like Amazon Prime, struggle during Christmas mayhem. This year, do the USPS and FedEx a service by ordering at least a month in advance. You’ll also save yourself the panic attack of trying to decide on an item before the shipping deadline.

4. Better Selection

Finally, you’ll find a much better selection when you shop early. Although stores do bring in extra products for the season, you can still find what you want if you give yourself a couple of months, especially through shopping online.

Shopping early also opens up options you may not have considered. For instance, are you traveling earlier in the year? Consider bringing home a present from another state or country. These presents will be more exciting and possibly cheaper depending on where you purchase them from.

Planning early also allows to you add your own touches by making some element of the gift yourself. Your gifts will be more personal and meaningful.