How do you beat the holiday rush when it comes to gifts? Buy as much as you can ahead of time! It might sound kind of stupid—I mean, isn’t the holiday season when all the sales are? But it can be worth it to plan for birthdays and holidays way ahead of time, if possible. If you have a 3 year old who is super into Dora the Explorer and after Christmas, a bunch of Dora stuff is 70% off, you may NOT want to go nuts buying stuff because in a year who knows what he or she will like? But gender neutral, basic things are almost always appreciated.
Naturally, after Christmas is when the biggest clearance sales, toy-wise, are. Many things hit 30-50% off the day after, but if you wait until after January 1st, many things hit 75% or more off. Of course, it’s kind of a gamble what you will find, but if anything looks even vaguely like someone on your gift list might like, buy it!
I found a huge art set on clearance at Target for $5. I picked up it and stashed it in my closet, knowing that my nephew’s 4th birthday was in a few months. About a week before his birthday I saw the exact same art set at a different store for the full price of $18! I was pretty happy with my find, and my nephew was happy with his gift (and naturally I’d peeled off the clearance sticker before wrapping it so his parents had no idea I’d bought it so cheaply).
This strategy works if you’re more of the do-it-yourself gifter, as well. Scrapbooking and other craft supplies often hit low sale prices after the holidays and after the beginning of the school year as well. Scoop ‘em up on sale, spend a couple of weeks making your gifts in your spare time, and voila! You’re done for the year! Isn’t that awesome?
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