Save While You Shop for Gifts
Want an extra special gift for that extra special person in your life? Shopping for gifts—whether for your spouse, parent, sibling or friend—doesn’t mean you have to shell out too much cash for the perfect present. There are plenty of ways you can show your love without emptying your bank account. Here
Want a fabulous designer scarf for your sister? Planning on getting your dad a new suit? Or maybe picking a tie for your brother? With a Neiman Marcus coupon, for example, you can buy the latest high-end fashions and styles at lower, more affordable prices. Shopping sites like Ebates help you take advantage of promo codes and discounts at top online retailers. So make it a habit to regularly check for offers from your favorite stores. With perks like cash back and savings, you’ll definitely enjoy a wonderful gift shopping experience when you shop with coupons.
Stick to your budget
Make a gift list and set aside a budget for each person on the list. Then stick to that budget. Sometimes, all it takes is a bit of time to find the right gift at the right price. Pricey doesn’t often mean great. Sometimes, it just means you pay more.
Save up for it
If you really want to go for pricey gifts, one way to do this without stretching your budget is to save for the gifts way in advance. Create a birthday calendar. Note down the important dates, the people you want to buy gifts for. You’ll have a clearer idea on how much time you have to save for each gift. It’s easier to earn the money over a few weeks than to have to pay for the gift all at once. It’s a good strategy if you want to start saving for that Valentine’s gift or birthday present for your sweetheart.
Yes, this works. Just remember to regift when you think the person will love the gift in question, and would use it in the way you never would. Regifting opportunities don’t stop there, though. If you’ve got coupons, subscriptions or even gift certificates, you can give those too. Shopping online for free gets a lot of people excited.
Check reward programs
Some credit cards offer reward programs that allow you to get items you can give away as gifts. If your heart is set on a big purchase, look into rewards programs and check what freebies you’d be getting. Then pick out which ones you want to give and which ones you want to keep for yourself.
To save up on costs, why not consider DIY gifts? Do you knit? Make a couple of beanie hats, scarves, or sweaters for your friends and family. If that involves too much time on your part, why not go for baked products? Or maybe a couple of sketches if you have drawing skills. You also always could get a little creative and put together photo albums of your shared memories together.
Discount codes and coupons aren’t the only things you should keep an eye out for. You should also take advantage of free shipping, free packaging/wrapping offers along with other additional deals that many stores offer.
Don’t wait until the eleventh hour to start shopping for presents. Start looking around, scouting for the perfect gift, even when the birthday, wedding anniversary—or any other occasion for that matter—is a week away. Some people start looking as early as a month or two away. More time means more chances to find the right one. You might be tempted to settle for a pricey gift or a less-than-stellar choice all because you ran out of time. Don’t let that happen.
Buy gifts all year
Sometimes, it really pays to be prepared. Look for off-season deals. Buy those gifts whenever you can find them then set them aside. Doing your gift-shopping throughout the year means you pay less for items that might cost more during, let’s say, the holidays or Valentine’s.
Buy shared gifts
If you really want to save up on gifts, just buy a big gift for everyone in the family. This also works for couples or friends. For instance, a photo album for the entire family, one that has everybody’s picture in it, is a wonderful, touching token. A board game for two is great for couples, as well as a matching set of picture frames for sisters or brothers. Look into what gifts can be shared among your friends and family and start picking.
Contributed by Simon Davis, a full-time business writer for the last 4 years who has had the privilege of attending some of the most renowned business conclaves held across the world. When not traveling for business, he loves spending time with his girlfriend and doing adventure sports.