Getting Started: 4 tips for last-minute holiday shopping

20 Jan 2016 | Author: | No comments yet »

Consumers Continue Holiday Shopping: Study.

According to the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) final consumer holiday spending survey of the season conducted Dec. 9, the average holiday shopper has completed 53.5 percent of their shopping, similar to the 52.9 percent the same time last year.As the holiday shopping season continues at a dizzying pace, Connecticut Better Business Bureau is reminding consumers about their rights in the marketplace.With only four shopping days left until Christmas last minute shoppers will be storming the retail stores and shopping malls the next four days fans of Star Wars stormed movie theaters this past weekend.

Approximately 10 percent of holiday shoppers said they were finished – or 22.6 million people; that means 90 percent of holiday shoppers still have gifts, food, décor and/or other holiday items to buy. Major League Baseball’s Winter Meetings have come and gone and the majority of the top free agents have already been stuffed in somebody’s stocking.

When asked when they believe they will purchase their last gift, one-third (33.4%) said sometime before Dec. 18, though 10.2 percent are planning to wait until Dec. 23. With pitchers and catchers reporting to Spring Training in less than two months, general managers are looking to complete their rosters with last minute holiday specials. Additionally, 28.8 percent said they wait until mid to late December because their friends and family haven’t given them enough ideas as to what they want and 22 percent are waiting for the best deals on holiday merchandise. If they cannot meet the shipping deadline, the seller has to give you the option of agreeing to the delay, or cancelling your order with a prompt refund. Even an unseasonably warm winter cannot keep last-minute shoppers from putting off their holiday purchases anymore.” For the first time, NRF asked holiday shoppers about their intentions to buy and preference to receive a gift of experience such as tickets to a sporting event, cheese of the month club or an adventure outing like whitewater rafting.

Chicago has a new second baseman (Ben Zobrist), a new athletic outfielder (Jason Heyward), and pitching depth (Adam Warren, John Lackey and Trevor Cahill). Now the two teams are double-checking their lists, but are torn on whether they should buy gifts for their boss at work or their sibling’s significant other who may or may not make to the holiday festivities. These involve luring you to a store to buy a coveted item advertised at a discounted price, and urging you to buy a similar, usually more expensive product if the merchandise is out of stock. Another important consumer right is protection against misleading advertising, such as a seller making unsubstantiated claims, fake testimonials, incomplete product descriptions and misleading photographs. Check for the tag – If an item doesn’t have a tag, inform the salesperson and make sure that it is noted on the receipt to avoid problems if it is returned.

With just two weeks to go, millions of smartphone and tablet owners are still planning to use their go-to shopping aides to research gift ideas, compare prices, look up store information and in-store availability and redeem coupons at purchase. This type of shopper, just found out what their sister bought for her son or daughter, or checked the credit card receipts and realized their spouse went way over budget in his or her shopping for the other.

Not to be outdone, now that shopper is out looking for some Star Wars or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles toys so they don’t lose “cool” aunt or uncle status. Be careful with a debit card, though, since funds are taken directly from your bank account, and you won’t get that money back from a dispute until or unless it is resolved. AnnualCreditReport.com – Visit AnnualCreditReport.com, a free, no-strings-attached, government-sanctioned service operated by the three credit reporting companies.

The Yankee might be quiet and decide they don’t care what the Red Sox are spending, or they may go out and sign the best free agent pitcher left, Mike Leake. If you feel you are the victim or abusive, misleading or other illegal business practices, you are urged to contact the Office of the Attorney General (860) 808-5420 or file a consumer complaint online at ct.gov/ag, or the Department of Consumer Protection, at ct.gov/dcp/complaint, by email at dcp.frauds@ct.gov or by telephone at (800) 842-2649. These shoppers mean well and have good intentions, but due to a lack of creativity or a misplaced grandkid’s list for Santa, end up buying gift cards, hot chocolate kits, or meat and cheese gift boxes.

Also don’t forget “candlesticks always make a nice gift,” as do baseball cards, baseball movies, books about baseball, and well anything baseball related should do.

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