The holidays are approaching fast, and with them Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and countless other holiday sales and specials, and other gimmicks to separate us from our money. That's why you need these best holiday shopping tips to help you survive. Shopping online from the comfort and privacy of your own home makes it easy to compare different products you may be interested in purchasing, and find the best deals.
But there are times when seeing the pictures and reading the descriptions on your phone, tablet, or computer screen just aren’t enough. You need to see and touch what you’re thinking about buying before you decide whether or not to go for it. You simply must go shopping.
Sadly, there are people who use the holiday spirit and holiday distractions to take advantage of others. But you can prepare yourselves to shop, have fun, and stay safe with these best holiday shopping tips.
1. Check out Your Vehicle
Before you leave home look in your car, and remove anything someone might want to steal. It only takes a few seconds to break a car window that may cost hundreds of dollars to replace. This is one of the best holiday shopping tips.
2. Be AWARE of Your Surroundings, Starting in the Parking Lot
Take a picture of your car and parking space in case you forget where you parked. Just the act of taking the picture will increase the likelihood that you’ll remember.
3. Go with a Friend or Two
You can get their opinions about what you’re buying, and who you’re buying it for, and perhaps get some ideas about what to buy for them. Also, there is safety in numbers.
4. Always Take the Elevator or Escalator
Taking a flight of stairs is good exercise, but stairwells can be very lonely and dangerous. Avoid them.
5. Carry an Umbrella
It may be a nuisance, but it could come in handy if you need to defend yourself because you can hold it away from your body as you swing at a potential attacker.
6. Trust Your Instincts
If you feel that someone is uncomfortably close, or you just have a bad feeling, look him in the face and say something about the crowds, or the weather, or that you didn’t need your umbrella after all. This shows that you are assertive, and gives you a better chance of identifying him, and less likely he’ll cause you any trouble.
7. If You Feel Extremely Uneasy, Talk to a Security Guard, and Explain Your Concerns
Their job is to keep people safe. They’ll be more than happy to escort you to your car or call the authorities if something has happened.
8. Don’t Wear Your Hair in a Bun or a Ponytail
This is because an attacker could grab it. If you have long hair you could wear a hat, or a scarf so it isn’t easy to get to it.
9. If Someone Demands Your Wallet, Don’t Hand It to Him, Throw It Away from Him, and Run in the opposite Direction
Most likely they just want the wallet. By throwing it behind him, he’s going to go for that and leave you alone, giving you time to escape.
10. Before You Leave the Store, Get Your Keys, Check the Picture You Took with Your Phone if You Need to Remind Yourself Where You Parked, then Leave, and Go Straight to Your Car
This minimizes your chances of being mugged or injured in the parking lot. When you have everything ready you can go straight there and get in without fumbling for keys and being left vulnerable.
11. When You Reach Your Car, Check to See if Anyone Has Broken in and is and is Hiding in It
Return to the store if someone has, and report the incident immediately. If not, and you don’t see people hiding in cars near yours, put your purchases in your car quickly. Then get behind the wheel of your car, start the engine and LEAVE! You don’t need to talk or text, you need to go home.
12. Have CONFIDENCE in YOURSELF
We all face challenges, and we can deal with them. Just as we can sense when others may cause trouble for us, they can sense that if they do try something, we will make trouble for them! Walk with your head up, your shoulders back, and a sense of direction and purpose in your step.
The holidays are supposed to be a time of peace on Earth and good will toward others and a time to make happy memories with the people we love. Being aware of potential problems and being prepared to deal with them can help us enjoy a safe and happy holiday season.