How I Beat The Christmas Shopping Queues

Christmas is my favourite time of year - I have always loved sharing the magic with my family and with Miss H's birthday being just a week before, it really is a special time for us. One side I don't love, though, is the Christmas shopping. Don't get me wrong, giving presents is one of my favourite things about the season, especially now I have children, but I have never been a shopper and trying to battle my way through hoards of people is my worst nightmare. So I thought I'd put together a few things that I do to beat the Christmas queues and make present-buying a much more enjoyable experience.


Start Early
This may be a little redundant for this year, but I start my Christmas shopping early every year. personally I do it so I'm not spending £1000's come December and leaving my bank card weeping in a corner. With January sales just around the corner, it's the perfect time to get some bits like PJ's, extra gifts for children in the family and general presents for aunts and uncles you never know what to buy for. Put them all in a box and mark it well, so when next Christmas arrives you're able to dig them all back out.

Check for deals
There are deals all over the place all through the year. Seasonal sales, holiday sales and of course Black Friday are all great times to pick out things for the Christmas period. Amazon have daily deals on their website, which if you monitor regularly you can pick up some fantastic bargains. This year I used Camel Camel Camel, which tracks items on Amazon and lets you know when there is a price drop. This has been invaluable for toys for the children and has helped me save a lot of money.

Buy online
Rather than face the shops, even when they are quieter, I buy the majority of my presents online. It saves me time, energy and it means I can easily compare prices rather than buying something on a whim in Toys R Us and finding it was a lot cheaper at Argos later on. I am also a member of fellow blogger's Facebook group My Mummies Pennies Money Saving Group where members share any deals they find and it has been from here I've found so many fantastic offers on gifts. Play Pennies is another website that shares deals daily as well as voucher codes you can use to buy online.

Use voucher codes and cashback sites
I often run a search before clicking done on my shopping basket just to make sure there are no voucher cods out there I can save some money with. My favourite voucher sites are VoucherCloud and Hot UK Deals as I find these are usually the most up to date and successful codes. I also try to remember to check Quidco every time I shop online to see if I can get cashback on my purchases, which is particularly great for bigger shops. You can even use this for insurance and holiday buys.

Enter giveaways
At this time of year advent giveaways are everywhere, with some amazing prizes on offer. On Facebook alone you can find tons on offer, but sites such as Money Savings Expert and Loquax are great for finding specific item you are wanting and entering multiple giveaways.

These are just a few tips from me on how I have made my Christmas shopping a lot less stressful and saved some pennies along the way. Do you have any ways you beat the Christmas rush? I'd love to hear any ideas.
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