Five ways to make Christmas shopping a stress-free experience

There’s no need to panic when it comes to buying gifts for family and friends, even if you are just hours away from the big day. Here’s how to attain Christmas shopping nirvana.

Make a list

Make like a Boy Scout and be prepared. Before heading to the shops, make a list of all the people you have to buy for and what would be a suitable present. Advance preparation saves time and aimless wandering around.

Head online

Online shopping is a great way to steer clear of the masses. Many websites also offer gift wrapping and free postage at this time of year – a great way to shop if you have to send presents overseas.

Avoid the crowds

Don’t do your shopping at peak times. First thing in the morning is the best time, school holidays and weekends are usually the worst. And try not to leave everything until the last minute, but if you need extended shopping hours can be a saviour.

Pre-order food

To ensure you don’t miss out on the ingredients that will form the centrepiece of your table, check with local supermarkets and stores regarding the last possible date for Christmas food orders.

Stick to your budget

How much are you planning to spend on gifts, drinks and food? Set a limit and stick to it, so you don’t have a budget – or credit card – blow-out. And think about setting up a savings plan for Christmas 2018. It may help offset some of the costs associated with the festive season.

Give the gift of giving this festive season with our list of ideas for where to get involved with the community, how to donate your time, and how to gift with a difference this Christmas.