Christmas 2021 will be a celebration like no other. There's an incredible buzz in the air as families and friends prepare to reunite after long separations.
However, the factors that have kept us apart will also have an impact on our Christmas shopping. International shipping delays mean some items you were planning to buy may be hard to get or out of stock. Delivery and postal delays are on the cards. Plus, you may be feeling a little uncomfortable about joining the crowds at shopping centres and markets.
Being prepared can take a lot of stress out of Christmas shopping and ensure it all goes smoothly.
Here are three tactics that will help you stay calm and get the gifts collected on time.
The best way to keep your cool is to have a game plan. And that starts with making a gift list.
You can either do it the old-fashioned way with a pen and paper, or create one online. Klarna, the all-in-one shopping app has a 'collections' feature in its app that can do just that and more. You can share your lists with others, add products from retailers (and, bonus, get price drop alerts when an item on your collection goes on sale), and keep track of all the products you're planning to buy.
According to research by Klarna, 34 per cent of shoppers believe they'll do the bulk of their buying online this year, while 43 per cent plan to shop primarily in-store. And those who want the best of both worlds? That's 23 per cent who expect to shop just as much online as they do in-store.
If you start your shopping early online, you'll have plenty of time to wait for delivery. In the current climate, that means right now. So, when you finish reading this article, get clicking!
If sending parcels to friends and relatives, make sure you checkout the domestic or international cut-off delivery dates so your gift arrives in time for the big day.
The Klarna app offers a smooth, stress-free way for you to track all your deliveries. You get notified when your parcels are in transit, being delivered or are ready for pick up, taking the guesswork out of your gift arrivals.
If the delivery times for gifts you're planning to give in person on Christmas Day are looking uncertain, check whether there's a local store that has a similar item. Click and collect is another way to ensure you get your items fast without having to battle the crowds.
Australians are set to spend over $11 billion on Christmas presents this year, according to the Australian Retailers Association, and gift buyers are expected to spend an average of $726 each.
Setting a budget is one of the easiest ways to keep on top of your spending. Decide how much you want to spend on each gift and stick to it.
Another great way to save money this Christmas is by creating homemade gifts – they offer a personal touch that you can't find in a department store. Think edible items such as cookies, rum balls or jam; a framed photograph or photo album filled with happy memories from the year; or something crafty.
When shopping online, do your homework. Before you buy, make sure to check out the online retailer's returns policy, and their customer reviews. If you decide to do your shopping in stores, ask about their returns policy before handing over your card. Also, plan your route in advance to avoid having to backtrack, and skip the stores at peak times to ensure you don't spend half the day in traffic jams.
Finally, keep an eye out for stores or shopping centres that offer free or budget-friendly gift wrapping. You'll save on time, money and stress if the experts can do it for you.
Brought to you by Klarna – the all-in-one shopping app that offers flexible, interest-free payments and loads of smart features too. Download the free app and get shopping tips tailored to you, exclusive deals, and the freedom to shop anywhere - in-store and online - and pay later.