How to Simplify Holiday Shopping

One-stop shopping with everyone in mind

By: Katie Morton
Family in the city during Christmas

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Family in the city during Christmas

Photo by: martin-dm

martin-dm

So crowded shopping malls and parking lots aren’t your thing. No judgment here. Not everyone is a fan of the shop ‘til you drop approach, and that is totally valid. How amazing would it feel to streamline your holiday shopping while also eliminating the exhausting process of selecting the “perfect gift” for each of your nearest and dearest?

If this idea appeals to you, you may want to consider one-stop shopping – whether online or in person – with your entire crew in mind. That’s right: buying the same (or similar) gifts for a number of people dramatically decreases the time spent on gift selection and holiday shopping, leaving you with tons of extra time to spend on the things that really matter to you. For some inspiring ideas that will revolutionize your gift-giving experience, look no further.

Gift cards: Some argue that gift cards are impersonal, but it depends on what the gift card is for. Sure, a gift card for cash, to a gas station, or grocery store might not feel super special to the recipient. But what about a gift card for a restaurant that you know someone loves, or a certificate for a spa day? Bonus: if you buy several gift cards at once, several restaurants and stores will offer incentives, such as an additional gift card that you can give away or use on yourself.

Themed gift arrangements: For those who like to get creative, pulling together an assortment of related items is thoughtful and, when duplicated several times over, incredibly efficient. A few ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

  • pedicure kit with nail polish, a pumice stone, and a rich, soothing foot cream
  • decorative mug alongside a selection of gourmet coffees, teas, and hot chocolates
  • soft throw blanket with a cozy pair of slippers
  • rom-com on Blu-ray with popcorn and candy

Subscription boxes: An underrated option that is both simple to shop for and tailor-made for your recipients is a subscription box. The sheer number of different options available allows you to consider what would be most appreciated by each person on your list. For example, if you’re buying for kids, KiwiCo sends age-appropriate activities and projects designed to increase passion for science, art, and innovation. There are also boxes available for fitness nuts, food aficionados, beauty gurus and literally anyone else on your list.

Book club selection: Maybe you want an excuse to get together with your closest friends more frequently throughout the year. Purchasing each of your best girlfriends a book that merges your shared interests might just allow you to form a book club. A book club is also an excuse to get together on a monthly basis for wine, snacks, and catching up, which means your gift is effectively killing two birds with one stone.

Local specialty products: Perhaps you live near a one-of-a-kind bakery that makes the world’s best macaroons. Or maybe you know a market that sells local honey, jam, or spices that can’t be purchased anywhere else in the world. These regional favorites make wonderful gifts because they are unique to you and allow you share a piece of your world with your recipients.

Personalized photo gifts: Websites such as Shutterfly and Snapfish, as well as the photography counters in drugstores and other convenient retailers, allow you to craft your own custom photography gifts. From calendars to coffee mugs, or even just a few carefully selected canvas prints, there are options for everyone on your list. This gift would be especially meaningful for grandparents or other special caregivers in your kids’ lives.

Holiday shopping only has to be as stressful as you make it. If you want to make things easier on yourself by knocking everyone off your list in one fell swoop, you may wish to go with one of the easy but still personalized approaches listed above. This will give you more time to seek out the true meaning of the holiday season, which goes much deeper than frantic shopping trips. So say bah humbug to stress this season and simplify your shopping process. We know you won’t regret it.

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