The holidays, as fun as they are, can be a struggle. Creating our idea of a perfect Christmas season usually takes a lot of work. And we don’t often talk about the amount of work that we put into creating these picture perfect moments. There are only so many hours in a day; between work, taking care of the kids and trying to carve out five minutes to ourselves, we could never get it all done without planning. Often that means we’re looking for ways to make our lives easier, whether it be by cutting down on the time it takes to complete a task, or saving us money, or saving us from going to the store. Let’s be honest, the only way we can get through the stressful holiday season is with help.
Thankfully, we live in a time where most of the help we need is right at our fingertips. How helpful is it that with the simple click of a mouse or swipe of your finger, you can do just about anything you need to do now? At holiday time, your mind is racing even faster than usual. Throwing in things like keeping track of days off, travel plans, and all the gifts you need to buy makes your to-do list feel like it’s a million miles long and impossible to tackle. So, outsourcing where you can, not only takes some of the pressure off, but gives you a little piece of mind. There are literally dozens of apps and other things out there to help you, but these are some of our favorite and most universally helpful hacks to surviving the rush of the holidays.
Free two-day shipping, need I say more? Amazon has just about anything you can imagine, and usually at a decent price. It’s perfect for last minute gifts you may need, especially if you don’t just want to get someone a gift card or useless little junk gifts. Then there’s Prime Video, which is full of movies and TV shows which will come in handy, especially when the kids are home from school for Christmas break. But, say you find out on Monday that you have to go to a last minute holiday party on Friday. You are swamped and have no time to shop for a new outfit. Amazon has tons of cute and affordable clothing available via Prime for those last-minute emergencies. And with the shopping app for your phone, you can literally buy stuff while you’re stuck in traffic, or stuck in a boring work meeting. If you don’t want to pay for a full year of Prime (but why wouldn’t you?), you can try a month free trial. Amazon is also doing free shipping on millions of items even if you don’t have Prime, just for the holidays.
This browser extension automatically finds discounts and coupons for online shopping. It is currently available for Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera and Edge. All you have to do is download the extension and that’s it. If you’re shopping on a site that is supported by Honey, the available discounts will come up (they even have Honey exclusive coupon codes) and when you check out, they will apply all of the codes they can to your purchase.
“We've saved hundreds [this weekend] Black Friday using it.” -- Christine B.
Honey also scours Amazon to make sure you’re getting the best prices on anything you may be ordering from the site. Right now, the Amazon connection is only available in the U.S. They also have Honey Gold, a program where you can get savings through Honey’s commissions. With thousands of stores supported, you need this!
When the fridge is bare and you have to shop for a million presents, the last thing you want to do is shop for groceries. But unfortunately, you still have to feed everyone. And if you have to host guests for dinner, or participate in holiday potlucks, you need supplies. Grocery delivery is a blessing in disguise. Many grocery stores have their own delivery service, so you can order your groceries through their app or website, but there are also services like Instacart, which is a super helpful grocery delivery service. It will source all the stores closest to you to find you the best grocery deals, and then have it delivered to your door. It doesn’t get much better than that.
If you’re like me and love shopping at Target, then you should know about the app. You can pretty much use it to do everything. Not only can you can use it to keep track of your online orders, but you can also use it to make purchases online. Another cool thing is, the app will tell you where an item in located in your preferred store, so you’re not wasting your precious time wandering the store. You can see the weekly store ad, and if you’re in the store, you can scan an item to see if there are any deals available. Plus, there’s Cartwheel, Target’s in store deals app, which will show you everything in the store that’s on sale, even if it’s not in the weekly ad. Bonus, it will show you deals based on your regular purchases.
These are just a few tips and tricks to help you navigate this holiday season. Saving time is of the utmost importance during this time of year. Why would we want to spend all of our time standing on a checkout line when we could be spending it eating Christmas cookies and hearing our kids complain about all the things Santa forgot to bring them? That’s not what the holiday season is all about!
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