With Christmas out of the way, you might be looking for a bargain if you didn’t quite receive everything you were looking for this Christmas.

Or perhaps you’re determined that this Christmas you won’t be helplessly looking for a park a few days before the holidays with a long list of friends and family that you still need to buy for.

Here are some ways to make sure you can get all your shopping done early this year and relax during the holidays:


Begin in January

It may seem strange, but more and more people are beginning their Christmas shopping in January, and if you think about it, it kinda makes sense- after all, you’re still in the Christmas mood, you know how well your gifts were received this year, and of course there are some excellent after-Christmas sales to watch out for.

Shop smart

Speaking of sales, if you have a whole year to shop for Christmas it makes no sense to buy anything at full price. Be sure to visit the Hawkin’s Sale section and keep an eye out for excellent sales on Boxing Day, Black Friday and Cyber Monday, along with any “going out of business” or changing season sales.


Personalise your gifts

If you have a lot of time to shop for Christmas, there’s no excuse for giving out socks and boxes of chocolates- with a little thought you can do better. For nieces and nephews, choose fun toys that they can play with on Christmas day, like a race car or remote control helicopter. For friends and family, take some time to think about what would really put a smile on their face. Make a list of their hobbies and interests and consider what you could buy them that would be related to these.

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Don’t be afraid to spend some time scoping out what they would like- often we drop hints about potential gifts without even realising it, and a simple comment about wanting to read more next year, needing a new appliance or wanting to upgrade their wardrobe can give you plenty of ideas.

Give the gift of quality time

If there’s one thing we usually learn over the holidays, it’s that we usually don’t spend enough time with our loved ones- in fact you may find that you only see certain people at Christmas. We all know that life is short, so consider ways that you can spend more time with your friends and family. Vouchers are a great gift, as you could both go and get a massage together, spend a day shopping, or have a delicious meal.

Another good option is to subtly ask them about their bucket list (or just listen as they talk about their passions) and figure out how you can make one thing on their list happen- maybe they’ve always wanted to learn how to cook, so a cooking class could be a great option, or maybe they want to conquer a fear so a day spent skydiving could be a gift that’s always remembered.