holiday shopping

Shoppers Flock to Stores for Last Minute Gifts, Post-Holiday Deals

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Last minute shoppers crowded local shopping centers Friday looking for gifts on Christmas Eve.

Many local malls such as Dolphin Mall, Dadeland Mall and Pembroke Lakes Mall closed at 6 p.m. on Christmas Eve.

Some big box retailers are set to stay open later.

Though Walmart locations are closing at 6 p.m., Best Buy is set to remain open until 7 p.m. and Target will be open until 8 p.m.

If you are struggling to find last minute gifts, you can opt for subscription services.

“If you’re worried about getting your gift in time or being able to even find a gift, you can consider gift cards, you can consider online subscriptions. It’s not as impersonal as you may think it might be," Consumer Reports Shopping Editor Angela Lashbrook said.

For the foodie or amateur cook

Sign them up for a meal kit service to offer them delicious dinners for a month or longer and save them some serious meal-prep time.

Consumer Reports looked at meal deliveries from five companies and found many of them contain high-quality ingredients with easy-to-follow recipes and tasty results.

For the person who needs to relax

Consider giving a subscription to a meditation app like Calm, Pzizz or Headspace. A gift card to Spafinder allows the recipient to choose where they want to book their massage or facial.

For the fitness-obsessed

A ClassPass subscription will give them access to fitness classes at local studios and online.

For the intellectual or constant learner

Masterclass, Wondrium or Skillshare lets your loved ones take online classes taught by experts.

For the nature lover

For $80, you can give them access to more than 100 parks, monuments and battlefields with a year-long National Parks pass.

Still at a loss? Charitable donations are always considerate.

“If you’re still struggling, you can consider donating in somebody’s name. It’ll spread the holiday cheer even further," Lashbrook said.

As the holiday winds down, if you plan to hold out until after the holidays to find steep discounts you might be out of luck.

Inflation and supply chain issues could mean less clearance items after the holidays.

“We are still going to see after-Christmas sales, we are still going to see these items discounted, we just are going to be seeing fewer of them overall and the discounts may not be as good,” Consumer Analyst Julie Ramhold said.

If you’re still willing to wait for shopping deals until after the holidays, here’s what you need to know:

  • Don’t wait too long to shop. Start looking the first couple days after Christmas, because that’s when stores will have the most inventory. 
  • If you see the item you want to buy, buy it. If you wait for a lower discount, it might not be there. 
  • Start tracking the inventory of items you want if you can see that the numbers are dropping. 

The website DealNews says the best post-holiday items to buy are holiday decor, winter clothing and video games. 

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