Monday, November 2, 2009

How to survive this holiday season

By Alma Zhumagulova

Results of numerous surveys conducted on this year’s holiday spending plans show that this year many of the respondents intend to spend less than last year. Everyone is looking for large sales discounts and coupons (at least 20%), free deliveries and competitive pricing. In response to that many retailers are already having sales and discounts, for example, Wal-Mart and Target are decreasing their prices on toys and other gifts.
The top gifts of this holiday season are clothes and small but smart electronics such as notebooks, MP3 players, e-Books etc. Gift cards are promising to be one of the most popular gifts of this season averaging at $35 per card as found by Deloitte’s 24th Annual Holiday Survey. The top store destinations of this season are department stores, grocery stores, internet electronics stores, and candy and sweets stores.
During these difficult times many of us are struggling to make presents to all the loved ones while not overspending when the money is already tight. The right decision is to develop and stick to a certain holiday budget and a gift list. To avoid excessiveness one should set aside some amount of cash for holiday gifts so that one would always remember that the budget is restricted when shopping for gifts. Starting the holiday shopping early on is another good tactic; it gives more time to comparison shop and helps avoid last minute rushes. Now is a good time to get more creative with gifts: make them yourself, arrange fun gift exchanges with family members and friends, organize parties-as-gifts, and make group gifts to a family. Lastly, if you are out of options, give gift certificates for smaller amounts that although being small give the recipients a choice to get what they want.



  1. There should be a huge increase in retail sales this holiday season, stores may still extend shopping hours though.


  2. This is only a temporary trend and I feel that people will be more willing to spend during the holiday seasons. There are still many ways to celebrate, but there just needs to be minor changes to decrease the spending. - Jonathan Tse