Shopping – Staking Your Claim For the Radio Flyer Classic Wagon Or Other Toddler Toys on the List
OK, you know what you want to buy. You know where the deals are. You are still not ready to shop. But you need to know where the toys are going to be when you are ready to shop. For the Holiday Shopping Diva, this means having an exact knowledge of the aisle within the store and the exact street the toy store is located on.
Or if shopping online, the stores you have seen with the best selections and offers, especially if they are offering freebies, such as free shipping.
Holiday Shopping Diva Secret: Cluster the map
Once you know what your toddler would like, and have researched the toy sales so you know what stores or internet sites you want to patronize, it is time to get prepared with your map.
Knowing where your destinations are is not enough. Selecting destinations that have the tea sets and race car tracks you should not mean you are driving from one end of the state to the other. Try to find shopping places that cluster the stores you are after. This may mean that you'll need to drive a bit farther initially to find a shopping center that clusters most, if not all, of your targeted stores. The drive is worth it because being in walking distance to all the stores you need to visit means fighting for a parking spot fewer times and saving in gas and traffic induced headaches as well as time.
Holiday Shopping Diva Secret: Map out the exterior
This is a very important step. To avoid a shopper melt down a bit of on site reconnaissance is invaluable. Going to the stores before D-Day allows you to be aware of traffic patterns, parking conditions and even any construction that may pose a problem. This is especially true if your store cluster is one that is out of your normal shopping trip routines.
Holiday Shopping Diva Secret: Map out the interior
A simple drive by is not enough. You need to go into the store and locate the items you wish to buy. Do not be tempted to hide them elsewhere so you can rescue them from hiding later. The sales staff will work the store over with a fine-toothed comb prior to the sale. Knowing where in the store to find the items you are after means you can shop confidently.
Ask if items will be rearranged, sometimes sale items are moved to a more prominent spot or a place that will accommodate a larger display. Ask sales staff if they will be moved. If the sales person does not know, ask the manager.
Again do not be drawn off target. Impulse purchases only increase post holiday stress due to blown budgets. You love your child, but that does not mean you must purchase every Radio Flyer Classic wagon you see on sale. You will spot deals though because your antenna will be up for any deals in the vicinity of you, whether they be online or offline.
With a list in hand and a shopping route mapped out, reassess your list for the final time. You should have a store heading with gift items listed in descending order of priority.
Ask the manager about sale limitations, times or supply limits – there are usually only a few of the big items in stock. If you are after the big sale items it might be wise to know about limited supply so you can get there very early and stand in line or change your list.
Holiday Shopping Diva Secret: Practical things to keep in mind
Toddler toys can and do sprout legs and run into other shoppers' carts; Do not enter the stores unprepared. Make sure you not only have an eye for what you are looking for. Make sure you do not get poked in the eye by someone's toys sprawling out of the top of their cart.
If shopping online, bookmark the deals you see for a quick visit back to your list of great finds. One final note: Supplies are always limited for deals. Whether creating maps to offline stores or creating bookmarks for online stores, recognize the early bird gets the worm. Waiting for deals can work for you as long as you do not wait so long that all the deals are gone.