(WTNH) — Black Friday and Cyber Monday are just around the corner and retail experts say it’s critical to plan ahead to get your holiday shopping done in time, amid shipping delays and higher prices.
Backlogs in the supply chain and rising prices have pushed many Americans to start their holiday shopping early. And to dig deep for those deals.
“In the past, Black Friday typically marked the beginning of the holiday season. However, this year people should really consider a deadline for when they need to get the bulk of their shopping done,” said Kristen Larrea, a shopping expert from Retail-Me-Not.
Larrea says many shoppers are planning a return this year to physical stores. If you’re not of them? Go early and get ready for long lines.
“You really need to make a list, check it twice, and have a game plan ready to go so that when you see an item that’s on your list, you can act fast because there will be shortages of inventory,” said Larrea.
Larrea adds in-store shopping is best for big-ticket items that are facing major shipping delays.
For smaller gifts like clothing or electronics, online might be a better bet. But Larrea says don’t wait until Cyber Monday.
“I would not wait because inventory is so limited, especially for items like toys and tech,” Larrea said.
And use coupon sites or browser extensions to find hidden discounts.
“Even though retailers are experiencing higher costs, they still have to compete right to get everyone’s share of wallet this holiday season,” Larrea said.
If you can’t find that perfect stocking stuffer or your gift won’t arrive in time, consider experience gifts like online subscriptions or travel vouchers.