Reporting Paula Ebben
CAMBRIDGE (CBS) – For some, holiday shopping is all about the thrill of the hunt. “I love to holiday shop,” one man told us at the CambridgeSide Galleria.
But for others, trudging from store to store looking for deals is not their idea of holiday cheer. “If I could find someone to do it for me, I would,” another man said.
We can’t do your shopping for you, but we do have five secrets that may help you get it all done without all the stress and without blowing your budget.
Shopping Secret #1 CheapToday.com
CheapToday is a Massachusetts-based website where seasoned shoppers post bargains they find at stores like Amazon, Macy’s, Kohl’s and Target. A recent post listed the popular Leapster game at Amazon for $49.67. Toys R Us and Target both had it for $59.99. That’s a savings of more than $10. “With one click, all of a sudden you get the best deals across multiple stores,” explained CheapToday CEO Chris Hill.
Shopping Secret #2 Cheapism.com
Here’s another site for the frugal types. Cheapism.com will find the best product at the lowest price. The site rates everything from vacuum cleaners to flat screen TVs. It even has a ‘don’t bother’ section to save you from those ‘too-good-to-be-true’ traps.
Shopping Secret #3 Check your calendar
“There is certainly an advantage to buying certain items on certain days,” explained Babson College Marketing Professor Glenn Kelley.
Kelley says the best online deals for clothing can usually be found on Thursdays. On Wednesdays, look for deals on shoes. If you are planning to travel for the holidays, book your hotel on a Sunday and your Airline ticket on Wednesday.
Shopping Secret #4 Virtual Gift Cards
These are great for those who really believe time is money. A lot of major retailers are now offering retail gift cards. They are sent via email. The recipient gets them and can spend them almost instantly.
Shopping Secret #4 Milo.com
This site is great for those last minute shoppers who wait until the stores are picked clean. Type in what you are looking for and Milo.com will tell you which store near you has it in stock.
We tried it with a down North Face jacket. It was out of stock at the Boston store, but many of the suburban locations did have it in stock. Milo could save you time and aggravation, not to mention gas.
If you follow these steps, you might be able to enjoy the holiday and have enough money left over to take advantage of those January sales.