Savvy shopping for some of us means cutting down on how much we spend overall. In the case of Christmas gifts, waiting until "Tis the Season" can cost you more as you have less time to prepare.
Sit down now with a list of those you plan to shop for this holiday season. (By the way, KEEP this list, as just having a list and sticking to it will help save money as well, especially if you tend to forget that little thing you already got for someone!)
What kinds of gifts will each person appreciate? Maybe there are things you can spend less on that people might appreciate just as much, or more. Grandparents might especially appreciate a scrapbook of their grandchildren, or a stepping stone for their garden made with the child's handprints.
Do you have a special talent? Maybe you make cool-funky jewelry that your BFF would LOVE to receive? Or maybe you know how to knit, and your father would like a knitted scarf that perfectly matches his blue eyes, made by his own daughter's loving hands? Let your imagination run free now, while you still have the time to plan and prepare.
When it comes down to the last minute, you'll end up in the packed stores, cash in hand, looking for something to buy, and much more likely to overspend or be unsatisfied with the choices available. Preparation now can help you have gifts already lined up for at least some of your shopping list, and save you money in the long run.