Holiday Shopping Should Be SCARY

by Diana Ratliff - Date: 2007-01-07 - Word Count: 302 Share This!

Shopping for holiday gifts can be a frightening, nerve-wracking ordeal, but a SCARY experience is precisely what you need, according to online shopping expert Diana Ratliff.

Ratliff, the author of "The Insider's Guide to Shopping Online", suggests the following strategies to ensure that the remainder of your shopping season is affordable and stress-free. Well, almost.

S: Spending Plan. Determine how much you have to spend, who you'll spend it on, and an approximate budget for each person. Be sure to include money for holiday travel, packaging, decorating, clothing and postage in your total. Even if you've already bought some of your gifts, budget the remainder of your funds.

C: Comparison Shop. Allow time to shop for the best price, especially on popular or high-ticket gifts such as electronics or toys. Price differences can be substantial. To compare prices at dozens of stores in mere minutes, use online comparison shopping sites such as or And don't forget eBay!

A: Adopt an Attitude. Remind yourself that you're in charge and that you're not going to fall for clever sales tactics, impulse purchases, or media pressure to buy something you don't need. Just say no. Besides, if there's enough money left, you can splurge on something for yourself.

R: Real Money. Whenever possible, bring "real money" to the store instead of plastic. You'll spend less (as much as 60% less, according to the Consumer Federation of America) because you're more emotionally attached to the bills in your wallet. It's less painful to use credit cards because it doesn't feel like you're really spending money.

Y: "Y" You Celebrate. Remember the reason for the season. It's not about guilt, and you can't put a dollar value on "Thank you" or "I love you." So why try? This year, resolve to make the holiday big on meaning rather than on spending.

Related Tags: shopping, gifts, deals, holidays, online shopping, bargains, discounts, shopper, shop online, buy online

Author and "Online Shopping Insider" Diana Ratliff has released a new e-book that will show YOU how to save time, money, and hassle while shopping SAFELY online. Free Savvy Shopper email course. A MUST for anyone who buys online - or wants to. Check out ==>

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