Ryan Mcvay

Beat the rush

WITH just a couple of months remaining until Christmas, shoppers without a plan can spend more than they need. But even if you wait until the 11th hour to pick up those last few presents, you don't have to buy the first thing you see or pay an absurd amount of money.

Here are some shopping tips to stay within budget even when the clock is ticking.

1. Recycle

It's a dirty secret, but lots of people just put a new bow on an old gift. The most popular repeats are wine, candles, body lotion and fragrances, and fruitcake.

2. Online shopping

You can purchase a present online and print out a picture of what you bought, which you then place in an envelope under the tree.

3. Magazine subscriptions

There's a magazine for every interest and there are websites where you can find subscriptions at reduced prices, such as isubscribe.com.au and magshop.com.au.

4. Gift cards

Gift cards are sold almost everywhere, including post offices and news agencies and some petrol stations. There is also a wide range of gift cards available for music, fashion, books and more.

5. Beat the masses

Don't let the stress of other shoppers get to you in the lead-up to Christmas. Go early and avoid shopping at lunch hours where you can be overwhelmed and overspend.



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