Have you ever wondered why you always repeat the mistake of last-minute Christmas shopping year after year? You’re not alone. If you’re like many people, you promised next Christmas to be different, only for the holiday season to beat you again. Here you are so close to Christmas, staring at the long, endless list of gifts, wondering where to start. But, it’s not too late. Whether you dread holiday shopping or procrastination got the better of you, here are tips on last minute Christmas shopping to help you stay on top of the rush.

Shop During Non-Peak Hours for Last Minute Christmas Shopping

To beat the holiday shopping rush, shop during non-peak hours (really early or really late). It simply means shopping when everyone else is sleeping. Not only will you avoid the long queues, but you can also hit more stores.

Ideally, it’s best to go early to avoid the rush on your last minute Christmas Shopping. Usually, restocks are done overnight, giving you better chances to find everything on your list. If you go too late, chances are you’ll find most shelves almost empty. However, you can always ask the staff to check if they still have remaining units in their stores.

Join Amazon Prime

Already an Amazon Prime member? Congratulations! You won’t have to worry about your gifts arriving late. What’s more, members get free two-day shipping, plus, you can qualify for free one-day or same-day delivery. 

If you haven’t found that perfect gift yet and are an Amazon Prime member, you can shop at the megastore all the way until December 24 and still have the items delivered for Christmas Day with Prime free same-day delivery. Free two-hour delivery from Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods Market is also available on Christmas Eve in select regions.

Skip Delivery and Pick Up In-Store

Worried about your items not arriving on time? Don’t be! You can order online and choose to pick them up in-store. Most major retailers, including Home Depot, Macy’s, Nordstrom, and Bed, Bath & Beyond, offer this option on their website.

However, this service may not be applicable for all items. So, be sure to confirm if you can pick up the item in-store. Other stores like Target, Walmart, CVS, and The Container Store will deliver your staff curbside.

Gift Cards Also Make Perfect Gifts for Last Minute Christmas Shopping

Perhaps your item has sold out, or you simply don’t know what gift to buy. No need to worry. Consider grabbing some gift cards. It’s not as personal a gift as what you might have planned for, but it still offers the recipients the flexibility to purchase what they’ve always dreamt of.

As Christmas draws nearer, it’s common for retailers to offer great deals on gift cards. Check popular websites or brands your recipients like to see what gift cards are offered at a discount.

Take Advantage of Local Inventory Ads on Google

In 2018, Google shared statistics showing that in just two years, the frequency of the mobile search query “near me” had grown by a whopping 500 percent. Clearly, shoppers are interested in what nearby stores have in stock before taking the bus or train.

You can also take advantage of the local inventory ads created by Google to find items in stores near you. For example, the query “women perfumes near me” will show a series of ads, each with an image, price, in-store availability, and even directions.

It’s an easier way to find the items you want without having to travel or placing an order online and waiting for delivery.

Think About Subscriptions and Memberships

If you’re out of time or ideas on what to shop for your recipients (s), you can’t go wrong with a membership or subscription (popularly known as gift boxes). From museum or zoo memberships to magazine, beauty, and wine subscriptions, you have a wide range of options to select.

You simply have to know what your recipient likes. You can even find subscriptions on snacks, toys, clothes, to name a few.

Some of the favorite gift boxes include:

  • DollarShave Club – for high-quality razors and men’s grooming products.
  • LootCrate – no, it’s not a box full of stolen items. It’s a package with stuff gamers will love. You can find items inspired by The Fifth Element, The Labyrinth, and The Incredible Hulk.
  • Blue Apron – does he/she love cooking? This box offers excellent recipes with easy instructions and fresh ingredients delivered right to your recipient’s doorstep.

Last Minute Christmas Shopping Could be an Experience

Everyone typically searches for a present they can wrap and put under the Christmas tree. But it doesn’t mean they are the best gifts. You can always opt to gift your loved ones with an experience they’ll never forget.

Think about a Safari in the wild or to Disney Land. You could buy a ticket to a theater performance or a box office movie premier. Likewise, you can book a trip to an excluded resort with a beauty spa to pamper him or her.

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