4 THE QUEENS COURIER • HOLIDAY • DECEMBER 10, 2015 FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT www.qns.com EASE HOLIDAY SHOPPING STRESS BY TRESA ERICKSON Whether you start on Black Friday or wait until Christmas Eve, holiday shopping can be maddening. There is a lot to buy, a lot of places to go and a lot of items to choose from. Here are some tips to keep the stress down this year as you shop for holiday gifts. Set a budget. How much can you afford to spend on holiday gifts? This will dictate the types of gifts you can buy. If you have a very small budget, you may have to make more gifts than you buy or steer your efforts toward smaller, less expensive gifts. Determine what you can comfortably afford to spend and stick to it! Make a list. Jot down the names you need to buy for and what you would like to get them. Remember, it’s the thought that counts. You do not need to go all out for every person on your list. One gift per person or family outside of your immediate family should suffi ce. Shop early. Start looking for deals long before the holiday shopping season begins. Shop throughout the year, especially if you have a lot of people to buy for. You might be surprised how many good gifts you can get during a Christmas in July sale. If you are not a year-round shopper, go in late October or early November or December, when supplies are more plentiful, crowds are fewer and checkout lines are shorter. Compare deals. Shop around for the best deals, and don’t choose on price alone. Price and quality do not always go hand in hand. A $50 digital camera that breaks down the fi rst day is not a deal. Research the quality of the bargains you uncover and use all of the tools at your disposal to ensure you get a good deal circulars, websites, smart phone apps, etc. Choose a good time. When you are ready to hit the shops, do so early in the morning, if at all possible. Merchandise will be in order and salespeople will be more apt to help you. Lines will also be signifi cantly shorter. Shop online. If you are too busy during the day to do any real shopping, shop online at night. You wont have to deal with pushy people or stand in long lines. You might also uncover some hard-to-fi nd items. Whatever you purchase online, make sure your account for the shipping fees in your budget. Prepare for returns. Know each stores return policies and ask for gift receipts. That way, should you or the recipient need to return the gift, there will be fewer hassles. Wrap as you go. There is nothing more stressful than having a pile of gifts to wrap. Wrap your purchases as you go, or consider having them gift wrapped. Many retailers offer gift wrapping for a small fee. Take advantage of the service if your budget allows. You will save time and get beautifully wrapped gifts in return. Holiday shopping can be a real hassle. You are one of thousands of people trying to get their shopping done. Never lose sight of that fact and always be prepared. The more prepared you are for the daunting task before you, the better experience you are likely to have. s holiday guide Best Wishes for a Happy Hanukkah! Congressman Joseph Crowley 14th Congressional District PAID FOR BY CROWLEY FOR CONGRESS PISTOL LICENSING CONSULTANT, SPECIALIZING IN BUSINESS CARRY, HOME AND BUSINESS PREMISE NEW LARGER LOCATION • WALK IN HUMIDOR 14-30 149th Street, Whitestone • 917-563-1101 VIP PRIVATE ROOMS Available For Rent! The Holidays Are Coming… Give Him What He Really Wants! Gift Certificates Available! WE CARRY A LARGE SELECTION OF POLICE EQUIPMENT DUTY BELTS • ACCESSORIES FOR DUTY BELTS • HANDCUFFS KEVLAR GLOVES • TATICAL PENS • ON & OFF DUTY HOLSTERS PREMIUM BRAND CIGARS • CIGAR ACCESSORIES • PIPES PIPE TOBACCO • ACCESSORIES Walk In Humidor Large Selection Of Premium Cigars! Relax & Enjoy A Great Cigar In Our Smoking Lounge!
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