xmasstressMost holidays shoppers can be divided into two groups that are very similar to tax filers: those who get everything done right away, and those who wait until the last minute and are stressing out. For those who wait, shopping can be less taxing, no pun intended, if you get it all done in one day. It’s easy, if you follow these steps prepared just in time for Super Saturday.

  1. Fuel up your car the night before Super Saturday. Surely you know that disappointing feeling when you start your car up in the morning and the low fuel light is on. It just puts a big damper on your mood. Filling up the night before the big shop will start the day off right.
  2. Go alone. Shopping with someone else can be distracting. To save time and for peace of mind, go alone so you can focus solely on what you have to do. That’s not to say you can’t use some tactical support: Have a friend on speed dial who calls ahead to make sure the stores you plan to visit have what you are looking for in stock.    
  3. Hit the mall early. If the shopping mall is on your list of places to go, be there when it opens. It will be less crowded and everything in the stores should be in their proper places. As the day wears on, almost everything will be picked over by holiday shoppers and thrown here and there. And if sale items are what you’re looking for, they should be there when the mall opens. 
  4. Avoid holiday music. After listening to even the best holiday music for almost two months now, you may have become immune to the sounds of the season or they just put you in a bad mood. So turn off the radio and turn on the playlist that you listen to at the gym. It will increase your heart rate and get you pumped for everything you need to do.
  5. Have a list. Even though this is last on the list, it is possibly the most important thing not to forget. Having a list of places you need to go and gifts you need to buy will make this adventure much more effective. Without a list, you may be Scrooged.

Finally, keep those receipts for tax purposes. For those who file Form 1040 and itemize deductions, the IRS allows you to claim state and local income taxes or state and local sales taxes. If you choose the latter, you’ll need to take those receipts with you to your tax preparer to get your deduction.      

Disclaimer: Every effort has been taken to provide the most accurate and honest analysis of the tax information provided in this blog. Please use your discretion before making any decisions based on the information provided. This blog is not intended to be a substitute for seeking professional tax advice based on your individual needs.