It’s that time of year again and the holiday season is in full swing. With Black Friday knocking at our door it’s time to prepare ourselves and our wallets for this hectic holiday.
Let’s start with our wallet.
- Create a budget, and stick to it. It is easy to get caught up in the moment with Black Friday sales and discounts. But, $20 dollars here and there can add up quickly. Make a list of what you want to purchase. This will help you stay on budget and prioritize those last-minute add-ons. Taking cash to spend is another great way to stick to your budget.
- Do your research before you hit the shops. It is important to know the various deals that are available. Go back to that list you made and compare prices across retailers on those large-ticket items. Use a combination of print ads online searches when analyzing pricing to make sure you are getting the best deal.
- Start shopping early. Starting your holiday shopping early allows you to stretch the expense over a longer period of time. Retailers are even beginning to offer Black Friday like deals earlier in the month, allowing you more time to take advantage of a good deal.
- Shop from home. Not up to braving the crowds? Many retailers have started making Black Friday deals available online. You can now jump to the front of the line to shop and even pick up your purchase in-store.
Whether you are shopping online or in-store it is important to make sure your personal information is protected throughout the holiday season.
- Protect your personal information from “wandering eyes.” When shopping in stores protect your credit card privacy by covering up the account number with your hand.
- Monitor your account. While it is a good practice to monitor your accounts regularly it is especially important over the holidays. The earlier you can catch fraud occurring on your account the better.
- If the deal seams too good to be true, it probably is. Be smart when shopping online to avoid holiday scamming. Emails from unknown senders and ads on social media are common ways cybercriminals try and entice you with a good deal to get you to enter your personal information.
The information voiced in this material is for general information and is not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.