It’s that time of year again when we’re looking for ways to save on our holiday shopping. It’s more important than ever this year, with increased prices and product shortages. We hope our list of tips helps pave the way for a more productive and cost-saving shopping experience this year. They’re not only great tips for the holiday season, but for year-round shopping as well.
The National Retail Federation (NRF) forecasts that holiday sales during November and December will grow between 8.5 percent and 10.5 percent over 2020. CNBC reported that the average parent with kids under 18 plans to spend $276 per child on gifts this holiday season. The average holiday celebrant is expected to spend $251 on gifts for a significant other. Those who buy gifts for other family and friends are looking at even more. How can you save this holiday season? Follow our holiday shopping tips and download a few handy apps.
1 Set a holiday budget
In a perfect world, we would all have saved enough money throughout the year to pay for our holiday shopping and other holiday expenses. Clearly, it’s not a perfect world. Many consumers have not stashed enough cash to cover their holiday bills. If this is the case for you, setting a budget now can prevent you from being overwhelmed by holiday debt in the new year. Be realistic with what you can afford. It might mean adjusting your shopping list.
2 Compare prices before you buy
ShopSavvy is a mobile app that lets you scan the barcode of any product and compare all the best prices online and locally. You can scan either the barcode or input a product name and discover where the items are sold both locally and online. You will also see the price at each retailer. This app can be instrumental in helping you get the best price on all of the items on your shopping list. ShopSavvy is also available as an extension for Chrome. When you visit a product page online, ShopSavvy will search tens of thousands of retailers in real-time for availability and pricing. This includes both online and brick-and-mortar shops.
3 Search for coupons and deals
The Coupon Sherpa app enables you to save instantly with coupons from retailers, grocery chains, and restaurants. Browse coupons and coupon codes by stores or categories. Consumers can also input their zip code to see what coupons and offers are available locally. Shoppers can select their favorite coupons and the offers are automatically added to their card to use during checkout. Coupons can also be printed out if preferred. You can set alerts for new coupons for your favorite products.
4 Flip through sales flyers
The Flipp app enables you to browse through the weekly ads of over 2,000 of your favorite retailers, from Walmart to Dollar Tree, JC Penney, CVS, and many more. Add your store loyalty cards directly to the Flipp app, and then clip your coupons digitally to save in-store. Set deal alerts for items on your watch list and stay organized with an in-app shopping list. The Flipp shopping list will scan all available weekly ads and find offers for the items on your list.
5 Sign up for email and text deals from your favorite retailers
Retailers typically announce sales to loyal customers via text or email alerts before they’re out in ads and flyers. Many retailers will even give you a special discount just for signing up for emails or texts. If you are interested in doing your holiday shopping at a particular retailer, you may want to check out the type of discount you’d get for opting in for emails or texts. Retailers including Kohl’s, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Macy’s, and many more offer promotional and coupon codes just for opting in. It’s a great way to get a discount when you’re ready to shop. Remember, you can opt-out of these ads whenever you’d like.
6 Download a cashback app
Read our Benchmark Federal Credit Union blog on the Best Cashback Shopping Sites to learn which sites can help you get a cash return on your shopping dollar this holiday season. It all adds up!
Stacking your savings
Stretch your holiday budget by stacking your deals. Doubling up on coupon codes, using a cashback app, and then paying with a Benchmark Federal Credit Union rewards credit card can all help you realize huge savings.
If you need a little help with your holiday expenses this year, Benchmark’s Winter Wishes Personal Loan can provide you with a low-interest rate option for all of your holiday shopping needs. It’s also a great way to pay down your after-holiday debt.