City thinking, local knowledge

Preparing for Christmas in the Autumn? Make it really special with these tips…

By Questa Chartered

With the Brexit deadline looming, many Brits have begun festive preparations early. Artificial Christmas tree retailer, Christmas Tree World, has reported a 112% increase in sales, which represents the first stockpiling of artificial trees in the history of the world.  

However, early preparations for Christmas are never a bad thing. For many of us, we leave it to December and end up battling crowds of other festive shoppers on the high street and shopping centres. Christmas is a special time of year for many so we thought we would outline some tips so you can make it as special as possible…

Make a plan 

As you know, we love a good plan. Start making a plan around what you want to purchase and for whom. This will help to mitigate last minute purchases. We’ve all been there, where we’ve made a poorly thought-out “Christmas spirit” purchase in December, and it’s either broken the bank or it’s not hit the mark present-wise. Thinking about it in advance and getting it all down on paper is the route to a stress-free present buying experience. If there are any ‘hard to buy for’ loved ones, spend a little more time researching; you never know what might jump out at you.

Start purchasing early 

Once you’ve come up with your plan, start buying. You may want to spread out your purchases over pay days to mitigate the immediate financial impact, especially if you have savings goals to reach. Also, by purchasing earlier, you’re avoiding all the expedited December delivery costs for those of you who order online. 

Keep your ear to the ground

Keep an eye out for any sales that might be going on. More often than not, retailers will put items on clearance heading towards the Christmas period. 

A good way to stay up to date is to add items to your online wish list. Companies such as Amazon, Harvey Nichols and Selfridges have wish lists you can add items to; you’ll then be alerted when an item goes on sale or becomes available. However, it’s worth bearing in mind that some items may go out of stock, so for popular products it may be worth taking the plunge for a gift that hits the mark. 

Make it personal

A personalised touch can really make someone’s Christmas: an engraved pocket watch, a personalised bottle of whisky or a bespoke piece of jewellery. There are a number of companies out there that provide highly personalised gifts which go the extra mile at Christmas time. Companies like Gift Experience and John Lewis offer a whole range of personalised gift items and are definitely worth investigating. Many department stores such as Harrods and Selfridges actually offer in-house personalisation services. 

Go big

Ever wanted to spend the festive period perusing the Viennese Christmas Markets? What about Christmas day in the sun on the beaches of Puerto Vallarta in Mexico or perhaps Tenerife in Spain? Now is the time to get those bookings in, as hotels and flights will get more expensive the closer we get to December. If you want to make this Christmas one to truly remember, maybe a trip abroad could be the answer?

So there you have it, a few tips to help make your Christmas special. Of course, we recommend getting organised and planning ahead. How could we not? Plans are what we do best. 

For more information on factoring Christmas into your financial plan, don’t hesitate to get in contact.

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