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Watch our last episode of Shop Talk where CarrieMumsnet discusses surviving the Christmas shop with Ruth Langsford. NOW CLOSED

(342 Posts)
KatieBMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 05-Nov-13 14:00:43

Last week MNers were asked how they get the best deals on Christmas food and present shopping.

Watch episode 4 of Shop Talk now for tips on savvy seasonal shopping.

Barclaycard Freedom Rewards, in association with Mumsnet, created a new weekly online chat show, Shop Talk, and this is the last episode.

Here's what Barclaycard have to say about the show: "This is the final episode of Shop Talk, a weekly chat show where weve tackled the big shopping stories that you're talking about. A different presenter has hosted each show, and for our last show it was Ruth Langsford. Two panellists, including shopping blogger Emily and Carrie from MNHQ, joined Ruth to discuss surviving the Christmas shop and stocking filler saviours.

With regards to the Barclaycard Freedom Rewards credit card, Barclaycard say: Freedom Rewards is a credit card designed to reward you for the way you already shop. Collect Freedom Rewards points everywhere, and double at UK supermarkets and petrol stations, to turn into vouchers to spend at our huge range of high street and online shop.
If you loved Shop Talk and want to see the highlights from all four shows watch out for them here from Monday 18th November.



AChristmassyJerseySpud Wed 06-Nov-13 18:37:14

Start buying in June during the summer sales.

BlackberrySeason Wed 06-Nov-13 19:10:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

clubnail Wed 06-Nov-13 19:15:02

I am a huge bargain hunter, I enjoy getting a good deal.

I buy for Xmas or birthdays whenever - not in the week or so prior, but whenever I see something suitable, at a good price, I get it and store it ready.
I always google for a voucher for online shopping, check HDUK. I also use price match where offered. Because I am not rushing or panicking, I can also spend time comparing prices online so I know I am getting the best deal I can.

wonderingsoul Wed 06-Nov-13 20:02:44

i have a rough idea on what i want to get people, usually make lists.. then i re write them.

i tend to do most my shopping online as you can always find it cheaper some where else, ethier by their sales or with a code. it also makes me really think about the object. if it would be loved. so it stops me from just buying with out thought.

i start early, but do tend to add little thing on. esp if its a good deal and i know it'll be loved.

3bunnies Wed 06-Nov-13 20:09:15

I mainly look on Reastie's thread! I order something if it is a bargain. camel camel camel is good for price alerts on amazon too. This strategy works well for the dc as they can be persuaded to need most things! For other family I have a rough limit and some ideas then search the web for the best deals. I try to find discount codes before ordering too. I venture into the real world occasionally for bargains. I can't do as much in RL this year as ds is now 4 and more aware of things I am picking up though he hasn't started reporting back to the girls yet. It will be easier next year when he is in school but I am getting used to the bargains coming to my door now!

Theimpossiblegirl Wed 06-Nov-13 20:36:28

I try to buy as early as possible as prices start to creep up around mid-November.

Sometimes I have something specific in mind and look for the best deals online, sometimes I see a bargain and get it then allocate it to someone.

This year I have been an avid follower of Reastie's thread and have saved money and been inspired, so a big thanks for that.

Usually I do a lot of real life shopping too but have been unable to yet because of illness, so everything has been done online so far.

I often wonder how people coped before the internet.

Also, I only buy what I can afford. I don't want to be paying for thigs after Christmas.

MollyBerry Wed 06-Nov-13 20:53:22

Buy all year round - as long as it's not perishable - then you get the best prices on things!

I buy in January sales if I know soething can keep!

Hopezibah Wed 06-Nov-13 20:54:52

Start early is so important so you can catch any amazing offers throughout the year. And stock up when you do see those good offers. There are certain food products that we only ever buy on BOGOF and store them for xmas - things like nice sparkling drinks. Catch the boxed /tinned chocolate in the run up to xmas and not at the last minute as often the best deals for that are in November. (but that does mean you'll have to resist eating them early).

We often save our nectar points and use them to buy all those secret santa type gifts.

I tend to pick up certain type of items eg nice toiletries, books, games for the kids as and when I see them and then spend an evening allocating them to the various people we need to buy for. That usually only leaves a few final bits and pieces to buy nearer the time.

Don't underestimate the power of creativity! I love to receive handmade gifts and so do others. A lavender pouch, homemade soap or homemade candles and cards can all be easily made and make great gifts. Saves a small fortune too.

We buy the whole set of school photographs (as they are usually good value), then buy some cheap frames and frame the photos as gifts for grandparents and relatives.

Although I hate the idea of wasting money at Christmas, the kids do really enjoy opening some silly presents but rather than spend several pounds on each of their silly gifts, we pop to the 99p store for those items, leaving more money available for their main gift.

GetKnitted Wed 06-Nov-13 21:08:47

I try to think more about what the person likes than what I like.

Dededum Wed 06-Nov-13 21:14:15

I give the boys a budget, they spend 3 months changing their lists! Then I buy a couple of other smaller / surprise gifts for them.

Food - I buy it from about now, when I see a good offer: eg just bought a Christmas pudding for half price. I only buy the things that we're unlikely to raid before Christmas Eve though! We save Nectar points to buy a nice bottle of wine for Christmas lunch, and a few 'treats' too.

Gifts - again, I start mid-November-ish, but then resent the crowds. If it can be bought on Amazon, it will be!

neddle Wed 06-Nov-13 21:34:34

I only ever buy my turkey on christmas eve. I normally get it at least half off, if not more.

sharond101 Wed 06-Nov-13 22:01:21

I always start early and scour the moneysavingexpert site for deals throughout the year. I use pricecomparison sites and make use of discount vouchers and events that are on instore. I have a present cupboard I add to throughout the year and I make some of my own gifts too.

leesam Wed 06-Nov-13 22:19:27

What I do now we are a family of six is from January I buy all reduced xmas cards ,paper etc in the sales . Then spend £10 a week on food stamps for 10 weeks ,and also spend £20 on Argos vouchers a week rather then saving the money instead as I only go into it on a rainy day ,this way I can't spend it. As my 4 children are still under 10 Argos works for me . Then when 3.for 2 deal comes up or a sale item comes up I always can use the voucher if I haven't got the money. This wAy I can pick up little stocking fillers as I go all throughout the year knowing the bigger stuff is all took care of. This way leaves me money to do all the nice things in December with the children like ice skating,Santa steam train etc and enjoy the xmas build up. Works perfect for me

leesam Wed 06-Nov-13 22:20:32

Sorry £10 a week on food for 20 weeks.

defineme Wed 06-Nov-13 22:57:25

I have made my extended family convert to Amazon wish lists..everyone gets what they want and it's very satisfying.
We prefer chicken to turkey so dinner not a big expense, especially as one set of grandparents bring drinks and other brings pudding.
I have used the bargain thread too, but storage is a problem!

LaTrucha Thu 07-Nov-13 06:50:08

Start early - I look in the toy sales at the time of DS's birthday in July.

Use camelcamelcameluk to track price drops of things you want on amazon.

Reastie's Christmas threads!

Dolallytats Thu 07-Nov-13 07:08:48

I make a list of everyone I have to buy for. Each time I find the item I want to get for them, I do an internet search to get the best price. I do all my shopping online (agoraphobic), but never shop from a site with no address in their contact details. I am also very cautious about shopping on sites I don't know.

I also start my shopping very early. Summer is the time to start for me, although if I see something I thing someone will like before then, I will get it!!

shelley72 Thu 07-Nov-13 07:40:57

For gifts - I have an idea of what to get the children, and start looking quite early on for any offers. I also use voucher codes where possible, reasties thread, and any discounts and by post. I make use of 3 for 2 offers in shops but mainly I shop online.

For food - non perishable items I buy when on offer and I see them, and but a few items a week in the run up months before to spread the cost. I have a Christmas book / planner which I use to make life easier. It contains food lists, present lists, Christmas recipes so I work to a list when I'm buying.

We also set a budget and that's our limit. We don't go overboard on presents for the children. They are still young and while we try and get them something they wish for, Christmas isn't really about the gifts, more about spending time with our family.

QOD Thu 07-Nov-13 07:45:01

I buy stuff in the 75% off boots sale and allocate thru the yr for dd friend birthdays
I look on Martin money saving expert every day from October
I google for vouchers when I have something specific in mind

I just spotted a 20% off Office on Facebook and bought dd the white converse she wants for Xmas for £36 with free delivery instead of £45 plus delivery too

LittleBallOfFur Thu 07-Nov-13 07:46:54

Aldi for Christmas food - and I've started to buy bits now in my weekly shop to spread the cost and avoid a big financial hit near xmas.

For presents we've set a really strict budget this year and will be searching online for the best deals rather than the shops. Also signed up to enewsletters for shops I think I'll buy from so I can hopefully get any deals to come to me!

LittleBallOfFur Thu 07-Nov-13 07:47:38

Oh and cashback websites are great for extra savings!

talkingnonsense Thu 07-Nov-13 07:48:50

I write a list, and then look for offers that match it! I get v cross with all the 3 for 2, because that means I can't buy one thing, and all the things have to be the same price- I practically go into boots with a calculator. And it has to be on a points day! The stress is grim! Always end up with something not quite right.

milk Thu 07-Nov-13 08:23:50

Listen to the extremely wise Reastie smile

MooseyMoo Thu 07-Nov-13 08:38:17

I am a list person! I also have 6 winter birthdays before Christmas so I plan and shop early. I check Money Saving Expert and HUKD for deals, glitches, codes and when sales are coming up (Boots, Next, Sainsburys, Argos 3 for 2).

The best thing I did last year was to sign up to Quidco for cashback on internet shopping and discover camelcamelcamel which lets you check the lowest and highest an item has been on Amazon (and third parties).

Some people are easier to shop for ie kids and others need more inspiration/ideas and searching ie grandparents.

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