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Facts and figures for Thanksgiving 2021
Happy Thanksgiving during covid-19 times

Tips for holiday shopping 2021

Holiday-Shopping Store With Many Lights gb8b4e4375_640Holiday spending during November and December will grow between 8.5 percent and 10.5 percent over 2020 to between $843.4 billion and $859 billion, according to a survey conducted for the National Retail Federation.

The NRF expects that online and other non-store sales will increase between 11 percent and 15 percent to a total of between $218.3 billion and $226.2 billion, the increase due to online purchases. The number is up from $196.7 billion in 2020.

Holiday spending for 2021 may shatter previous records.

During the hectic holiday season, here’s information from WalletHub, a personal finance website, to help you navigate the hype and hundreds of choices available:

  • Macy’s, JCPenney, and Belk are 2021’s best places to shop on Black Friday, offering an average discount of at least 56.7 percent.
  • About 11 percent of items at major retailers will be more expensive on Black Friday than their current prices. Be sure to compare prices before you buy. The internet makes this easy.
  • Consumer packaged goods, items used daily by average consumers that require routine replacement or replenishment, such as food, beverages, clothes, tobacco, makeup, and household products, will offer the most value on Black Friday 2021compared to their current prices. However, computers and phones are expected to have the least rewarding deals at the famous sales.
  • One in four people are foregoing holiday gifts this year due to covid-19. If you’re stressed about finances or shopping, talk to the people you usually exchange gifts with to see if they’d like a pass this year.
  • Starbucks, Target, and Nike top the list for 2021’s best gift cards.
  • Some consumers already have access to little-known credit card benefits that can come in handy over the holidays, including price-drop protection and coverage for damaged or stolen items. Check to see if your credit cards have these features.
  • Forty-one percent of major retailers offering 0 percent financing use a dangerous feature called deferred interest, which has the potential to make holiday purchases up to 27.5 times more expensive than expected. Deferred interest promotions on credit cards are a trap for the unwary. They lure consumers with promises of “no interest” or “0% interest” for promotional time period, but there is debt time bomb at the end: Consumers who don’t pay off the entire balance before the promotional period ends will be charged interest retroactively back to the date that they bought the item, even on amounts that have been paid off.

Have fun shopping and celebrating the holidays. Be sure to take a break if you’re beginning to feel stressed.


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Rebecca Forstadt Olkowski

I've been trying to buy local from artisans. But Macy's is my favorite all year round for my own stuff.


Like Rebecca, I like to buy local whenever possible. Otherwise I cybershop, usually stuff for the grandkids. No shopping at malls, department stores, etc, for me!

Carol Cassara

Some great guidance here. But only shopping online this year. Macy's is going down the tubes, I fear, and I have always loved it.

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