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Stretch Your Dollar: The ‘Christmas Creep’ of holiday shopping

Stretch Your Dollar

As we get ready to officially kick off the holiday shopping season this week, the big question is – who has already started? We are stretching your dollar with how the early start can save you money or cost you as we get into the thick of shopping.

For many people, decking the halls while the jack-o-lanterns are still lit is unthinkable, but for some earnest holiday shoppers, it’s never too early to get in the spirit

In fact, according to the National Retail Federation, about forty percent of consumers actually begin their holiday shopping before Halloween. And retailers are responding.

“Retailers have started offering many of them– have started offering promotions earlier in the season, some as early as Halloween,” Katherine Cullen, Senior Director for Industry and Consumer Insights, National Retail Federation.

For retailers, there’s good reason for the so-called ‘Christmas Creep.’

“A longer shopping season gives consumers more time, it gives them time to browse and find the items they really want,” Cullen says.

More enthusiasm around shopping translates into more spending, the NRF forecasts holiday retail sales to hit nearly $730 billion over November and December.

Yet even with the Christmas Creep, the five days between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday will still be some of the busiest shopping days of the year.

“NRF is projecting an estimated 114 million– more than 114- consumers will shop on Black Friday and that’s still the biggest shopping day out of that entire weekend.”

But whether you’re an early bird or a strict after-turkey-day traditionalist, the holiday shopping clock is already ticking.

So it really comes down to looking at what you’ve done or have to do, and come up with a plan. You don’t want to go over-budget on someone you’ve already finished shopping for.

If you’ve been researching items you’d like to buy for people, this is a good week to look at where the deals are this weekend and make a decision.

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