Earlier this week a big news story was that a billionaire purchased a $170.4M painting using his credit card and he will now reap millions of reward points. Thanks to this spending, he’s promised to allow his family to travel pretty much anywhere on earth for the rest of their lives. We should be so fortunate to have such a purchasing experience (and credit limit) but the idea of using reward points as gifts for families is actually a really good holiday shopping tip.
TD Canada recently conducted a survey about online shopping habits and also consulted Cathie Mostowyk, an online shopping expert and president of Shoestring Shopping Guide Inc., and they’re shared some insights for the holidays.
Tips for Online Holiday Shopping
70% of Canadians surveyed do at least some of their holiday shopping online. Over 37% of those doing their shopping online are more likely to say they spend more than they would in store.
So what should you do? Make a plan and track each purchase to help manage temptation. That way, there should be no surprises when you see your credit card bill at the end of the month. Your family and friends can even use apps to send you their wish lists, such as Giftster, and some stores even have Wish List functions on their apps (like Target or Amazon).
Redeeming your credit card loyalty points for your holiday gifts is one way you can help stay within your budget, while making buying gifts easier and giving yourself more time to spend with your loved ones this holiday season. The TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite* credit card offers redemption flexibility for not only travel but also name brand merchandise and gift cards.
I know it’s a bit more clutter in your inbox, but signing up for savings programs from retailers can also be beneficial. When I’m asked for my email address in a store I usually don’t give it but I do stay on lists if I’ve been signed up after an online purchase. Subscribers can be offered special pricing and rates — I am a “Friend of the Empress Hotel” in Victoria and with that I get a good deal on their world famous Afternoon Tea.
One thing to look out for when shopping online is hidden expenses like shipping, duty, taxes, and exchange rates which can quickly add up. To cut shipping costs, shop in bulk at one retailer (to only get charged once for shipping) or pick-up in store if they have a location nearby.
With just a few weeks left to shop until the big day, these tips should hopefully help you save time and money this Christmas.