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As we all know Christmas displays have been up for several months. Now that we are getting close to Christmas, some serious holiday shopping is on the horizon, you’ll need all the help you can get to make it through the gift-buying madness still feeling merry and jolly.

Here are 6 tips to help make crossing off your shopping list a little easier:

Make a list

If you know exactly what you’re looking when you enter a store or a company website, you’ll less likely to be tempted by flashy displays and low-sale prices for that aren’t on Santa’s list. Having a list keeps you focused on the items you’ve already decided that fit when your budget, which will make your shopping experience quicker and less stressful. Especially if you turn to the internet for help on free shipping items if you spend over a certain dollar amount.

Check online sales

Before you visit the department store, check online first. The selection may be higher and the prices lower. And if the shipping is free, you’ve probably saved yourself a trip to the store. Just be sure to confirm delivery dates so you’ll get your item in time to wrap and distribute. There are lots of online coupons that might help you save a few dollars.

Comparison shop

While you’re online, comparisons shop to check prices at various retailers, especially if you’re making a big purchase. The difference in price can be substantial, and you could earn reward points from certain retailers as a bonus you can keep!

Gift Card Options

If a cash alternative is on your shopping list, remember that not all gift cards are the same. Gift cards that carry the logo of a payment card network such as VISA, MasterCard and American Express can be used where those brands are accepted. But retail gift cards such as Target, Starbucks and iTunes can only be used with those merchants. In recent years some companies have started charging fee to activate the card. Make sure you read the fine print.


If cash is tight right now but will improve in a few weeks or after the New Year when your tax return becomes available, consider layaway programs offered by some retailers. Typically, when you layaway something, you’ll put down a deposit that is a percentage of the purchase price and pay the rest over time. The merchant will hold the item for you in reserve until you can pay it off in full. Layaways allow you to reserve items that may not be available when you actually have the funds to buy them outright.

Keep your receipts

Remember to save all of your receipts from your holiday shopping. It may be helpful to ask retailers for gift receipts that you can include with your gifts so they may be returned or exchanged more easily. Keeping receipts also helps expedite refunds and returns, and is used to help validate warranties.

Start saving for next year’s holiday season by opening a Buckeye State Credit Union Christmas Club Account. By getting a year’s head start on your holiday shopping, you’ll be able to save more and give more!

Visit our website to learn more about our Buckeye State Credit Union Christmas Club Account.