Unless you’re the type to start Christmas shopping at the beginning of the year, December can be a pretty stressful time. Despite your best intentions, there’s the inevitable mad rush for gifts on Christmas Eve. But it doesn’t need to be this way. Start as you mean to go on, with plenty of organised gift-buying.

1. Think Differently

  • Set a budget: Avoid any awkward moments by chatting to family and friends now. Perhaps you would just like to buy your best friend a lovely gift, rather than trawl the shops for something for her teenage son? Having these conversations might not be your dream start to your Christmas planning, but establishing a budget will avoid embarrassment later on.
  • Try a secret Santa if your family has extended. Either set a reasonable sum of, say R500 per person or go for fun, personality-type gifts under R100.
  • Suggest a spa day with your best friend, mom, or sister instead of exchanging gifts. Post-Christmas, you’ll appreciate the pamper time that little bit more.
  • Don’t be afraid to call a halt to gift-buying, especially if you feel you don’t see or really know the recipients or their kids (or if it’s just too expensive). Just make sure you let them know your plans in plenty of time. Or suggest that you keep buying birthday gifts instead.
  • Combine funds and buy one hero gift. Ask the family to contribute if there’s an expensive thing or an amazing experience.
christmas gift planning

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2. Ask For Lists

  • Rather than waste money, ask the family if there’s something in particular they want – it could be just one buy rather than lots of smaller things. Perhaps there’s a favourite brand they would like you to choose a gift from.
  • If a child has chosen THE toy of the year, then snap it up quickly.
  • Ask to be emailed links to the items that people would like you to buy. It will save you so much time and effort!
  • Be prepared to shop around, as certain shops will have exclusive items.

3. Give An Experience

Are you stuck for Christmas gift ideas for the person who has everything? Why not buy an experience? They’ve become increasingly popular over the years, and pretty much every hobby or activity can be bought as a “nice thing to do” later on in the year.

Compiled by Food and Decor Editor, Claire Badenhorst


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