Whether you have only a few gifts to buy or more than you can count, everyone has Christmas shopping to do! I personally love it and find it adds to my festive cheer, but I know for a lot it can be a stressful or even dreaded task.
So today I thought I'd lead you through how I like I like to do my Christmas shopping with tips & tricks along the way.
To start I'd say I'm a pretty average Christmas shopper... I have an average amount of people to buy for, neither do my shopping early or too late and have somewhat of a vague budget per person. I also like to do shopping both online and on the high street, but I'll talk about that more below. So here is how I get my Christmas shopping done without too much stress!
Lists, Lists, Lists
I'm not an overly 'list person' but when it comes to present buying I very much am. I first like to write down ideas of what to buy each person in a notebook... nothing specific, for example '2015 calandar' 'something Frozen related'. I then start looking for most of these items online to find the best products and prices. When I've found exactly what I want to buy for X person a list is then created on my iPhone or iPad of the specific item and where I'm buying it from. I will then have a huge list of 80% of the Christmas presents I want to buy. The reason I do this, other than to stay organised, is so that I can group items from the same website together and not have a million different deliveries arriving. Also if I'm placing a click & collect order I can pick up multiple presents for various people all in one go.
Where I Shop
As I mentioned above I do like to group deliveries together because a lot of my gifts seem to be from Amazon and ASOS. Amazon have such a wide selection of products at great prices and ASOS, again offer a large selection of brands and there's always a discount code to be found. Plus I have a yearly subscription to their Premier service which entitles me to free next-day delivery or selected day delivery which is very handy. As for Click & Click shopping I use Tesco, Asda and John Lewis. John Lewis can be surprising affordable and I love the option of collecting from Waitrose. Also with click & collect orders, refunds are given instantly if you visit the collection desk, worth it when you are ordering clothing or items you aren't sure about. Also for toys reserving at Argos is also very handy. Talking of Argos... eBay seem to have now teamed up with Argos so a lot of items can be picked up from Argos; saving on delivery costs and potentially missing a delivery. I recently did this with a chair I purchased and was impressed with the service.
High Street Shopping
When it comes to high street shopping at Christmas I can find it stressful! Anxiety has been known to arise in me in big queues and I generally feel too hot in stuffy, overcrowded shops. However if I time it right (generally a week night not too close to Christmas) I can find Christmas shopping ultra festive! I also prefer to visit a large shopping centre where I know the layout and has the benefit of large stores (less crowded/more tills)... basically the Trafford Centre. I also find there's none of this having to wear a heavy winter coat but then getting too hot in shops because you aren't going to be outside... so this cuts down of the feeling hot and fluttered! Okay... I must be boring some of you now.
As for where I shop, Selfridges is a must! Yes, there are many crazily priced items but a visit to the Paperchase concession is a must for wrapping paper and their food hall offers so many amazing treats - American candy makes great stocking fillers or a good present for a hard-to-please teenage boy. Next stop is always Boots for their 3 for 2 gifts, great for men's skincare sets and gifts for people you don't see too often! Then onto M&S to stock up on biscuits and chocolates for add-on presents and also a few food treats for myself (their salted caramel sauce is to die for). As for department stores I always make sure to pop into John Lewis just to have a look around and generally come out with a mug for someone and Christmas decorations I don't need! As I mentioned above, 80% of my shopping is done online, so my high street Christmas shop doesn't take forever. I also obviously have my list on my iPhone to hand and put a star next to the gifts I purchase so I know I've got it.
By the 20th December I'm always pretty much done and then can commence with the wrapping whilst watching a Christmas film or listening to Michael Buble (never Justin Bieber's Christmas album *tumbleweed*).
Other than buying mandatory gifts for the people I don't often see or care about eep, I really enjoy Christmas shopping and don't find it a chore! I'd love to know how you feel about Christmas shopping - do you love or loathe it? Also how far have you got? I'd say I'm 40% done.