From less crowds to better gifts to on-time delivery, doing your Christmas shopping early offers some solid benefits.
As much as Christmas is a time of celebration, it’s also a time for some pretty stressful situations. We’re talking about buying presents, especially at the eleventh hour.
There’s actually a simple solution for this: Start shopping early! Yes, yes, that’s what you tell yourself every year, but it kind of never happens. Well, read on and let us try to convince you why you should start, well, NOW.
1. You Have More Time to Shop
Have you seen Orchard Road on Christmas Eve? The malls are filled with folks who mostly didn’t plan ahead (or have no time to), and filling their Christmas shopping lists at the last minute by all means possible.
Shopping with this crowd can be an incredibly stressful experience. Even if you’ve stocked up on what you need, you’re likely to be fending off the same crowd again on public transport to get home!
2. You Won’t Stress About Delivery Times
Another source of stress, this time for those of us who shop online: Making sure your gifts reach in time for Christmas.
At other times of the year, two weeks is usually more than enough time for overseas deliveries to reach Singapore.
But once you hit the peak of Christmas season, that might not be the timeframe anymore as courier services and post offices in many places face a deluge of deliveries.
Either your gifts reach late and end up being given out after Christmas – if you’ve chosen a Christmas-themed item, that might be awkward – or you shell out for express delivery, which can be rather expensive in foreign currency.
3 You Choose Better Gifts…
There are people who buy Christmas presents at all times of the year, but save these gifts to be given during Christmas. They do this because they happen to spot something that would be perfect for someone they know.
This is a thoughtful way of gifting, because when presents are carefully curated, they make an impression. Your loved one will also appreciate the thought put into the selection.
Such gifts tend to avoid the trap of being run-of-the-mill. After all, how many mugs printed with Snowmen do you really need?
4. …As Well as More Appropriate Gifts
Let’s admit it: There will always be folks on your Christmas list that you have to buy presents for, for no other reason than you’re obliged to.
One example is the colleague in your office whom you drew for Secret Santa, but whom you barely know.
If you start your shopping early, you have more time to pick a gift that suits its purpose.
Otherwise, you might end up reaching out for the mug printed with Snowmen (sense a theme here?) as the most convenient, if thoughtless, option.
Your gift does nothing to improve relations and worse, might be relegated to storage, which means a waste of your money.
5. You Don’t End Up Buying Generic Stuff
Since we’re on the topic of Christmassy mugs, let’s explore the world of generic yuletide gifts.
There are the gift sets that all the skincare and make-up brands push out during this time, chocolates in festive packaging, socks with prints of the season…
These presents are all fine on their own, but they’re not particularly memorable.
If you really want the recipient of your gift to beam with delight, you’ll need to try much harder, and it’s easier when you have time on your side.
6. You Can Take Advantage of Credit Card Promos
Several banks are already running Christmas promos for credit card holders, which is sure to put you in the festive mood.
Standard Chartered has a Christmas promo where its credit card holders stand a chance to win $10,000 cashback and a staycation.
Meanwhile, UOB’s Christmas deals include 10 per cent off festive hampers from Dean & Deluca – perfect for the foodie in your clique — and 10 per cent off at Benjamin Barker, where you can get something for the trendy man in your life.
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By Alexa Fang
Alexa is a pop-culture vulture. She lives to read, write and travel, and decided long ago that life is stranger than fiction. When she’s having croissant, she thinks in French. “31 Rue Cambon” is her favourite address, and she believes that money one enjoyed spending is never money wasted.