UNITED STATES─I love the season of fall, but it seems as soon as Halloween dawns upon us the rest of the holidays fly by. Thanksgiving has come and gone and now we are almost less than 3 weeks away from Christmas. Yes, Thanksgiving falling later this year, has turned the amount of time we have to do Xmas shopping not as long. I’m certain some people may have procrastinate and are starting to panic, but please don’t.

You still have time. The world is not ending, but you need to put a plan in place. I know plenty of people are thinking Cyber Monday is the time to get some of the best possible deals, but I beg to differ with that assertion. There are indeed some deals on Cyber Monday, but they are nothing compared to what you will find if you actually ventured into the stores on Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday or on the Saturday after Black Friday.

In my personal opinion, anything less than 50 percent is not a deal. Thirty percent is laughable; forty percent is not as much as I want it to be. Anytime that you can get something half off the regular price or more, than you’re looking at a potential deal America. Some people think if you save $2 or $3 it’s a deal, but c’mon people, you have to be aware that when you save a lot of money that gives you opportunity to use that money you saved to purchase other items. It could be gas, it could be food, it could be household essentials or another Xmas gift.

As noted by one of my colleagues, you don’t have to buy for everyone when it comes to Christmas. You buy for those who do for you in my personal opinion, if you can venture outside of your immediate family great, but it’s not always going to bold that way America. Sometimes you win some; sometimes you lose if you overdo it. Do not break the bank trying to please people. No matter what you do, you would not please that one person no matter what you buy of give them for the holiday. As a result, just keep it simple, keep it light and move on about your day.

You might hate to hear this, but do you best to try to do your shopping during the week, anytime between Monday-Friday would be great because you lessen the possibility of running into those massive crowds. If you have to venture out on Saturday or Sunday, which some people will absolutely have to do, it would be wise to be the early bird. Why? You know what they say: the early bird catches the worm. That holds very true in the world of shopping and catching a good bargain.

Don’t be last minute if you do not have to be. Some people I can understand because of work or just chaos in your personal life that makes it difficult for you to carve out the few hours needed to get all that Xmas shopping on your list that needs to be fulfilled. At the same time, you have to start prepping for that big family meal: rather you’re visiting family, hosting dinner or saying the hell with it all together. Some people choose not to bother with the headache which is fine and dandy, while others have plans that seem odd or unexpected.

Written By Zoe Mitchell