Don’t be a scrooge, be cheap this Christmas season

You can hear the music and see the lights and decorations, so there’s no denying that the holiday season is near. Among the carol singing, eggnog drinking and mistletoe kissing, one of the major attractions this winter is (as always) gift exchanging! Unless you have connections with one of Santa’s elves, your poor and barely surviving wallet is going to take the hit. But have no fear, because if you take advantage of these money saving tips, the holidays can still be merry even if your wallet is starving!

Santa Carrying Shopping Bags

1. Don’t run from the word “clearance”:
Most people pay little or no attention to the racks located at the back of a store. You know, the ones with clothes and items that have little red tags placed over their original price? Some people even believe clothes that happen to be on the clearance rack are somehow damaged or of cheaper quality. However, that silly thought is false. Clearance items are simply clothes that have been on the floor for a while, not necessarily out of style, but not exactly one of the store’s newest arrivals. Why not save 50 per cent on that sweater for your sister? You’re still getting the same great quality as the one in the front, just maybe in last season’s colour.

2. Check out the off-price department stores:
Miraculously, there are whole stores that are dedicated to selling name brand and good quality items for discounted prices! And no, it doesn’t have to be your local thrift store. These stores usually go by the name of Winners, Labels and now Marshalls, which recently arrived to Canada from the States.

3. Constantly read those flyers:
Remember how back in the day, inside your local newspaper, came those colourful and vibrant flyers highlighting store’s weekly deals? That still happens! So keep a look out for flyers and take the time to flip through them. You never know, that camera your dad badly wanted might be on sale!

4. Sign up for online newsletters sent straight to your email:
If hard copies aren’t your thing anymore, then visit the websites of stores and scroll right to the bottom. There you should find a box where you can insert your email address to receive emails in your area of interest. These emails not only illustrate the latest fashion and newest items available but also mention insider sales and possibly coupons!

5. Use social networking sites to find out the latest and greatest deals:
If you don’t want your inbox being flooded with newsletters, there is still a chance to find out about the latest deals. Facebook and Twitter are some of the sites that not only offer you a chance to creep your ex, but also let you “like” and follow your favourite stores that constantly post exclusive coupons and information on sales. Twitter accounts such as @RedFlagDeals have deals conveniently displayed on your newsfeed. By following one, if not all, of these shopping tips, you’ll be able to save a whole lot of money when buying gifts. And with all that extra cash, you can buy yourself the gift you really wanted, but nobody thought of. It’s a win-win for everyone!

@Naomi_ML

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