(Updated 12/22/17) The week after Christmas is often when shoppers head back to the store to return or exchange gifts, or maybe use a gift card they got in their stocking. But did you know the these days right after Christmas is one of the best times of the year to score a bargain? It’s a time when stores start to have the “Clear It Out” mentality and start slashing prices left and right.
So now that Santa’s cookie crumbs are all that is left on the plate, it’s time to consider smart after Christmas sales and real opportunities to save money. Here are eleven items that provide some great savings potential, shop smart and you could save hundreds of dollars on stuff you were going to buy later in the year at potentially full price.
Apparel and Shoes
Aside from Cyber Monday, perhaps the best time to score a deal on clothing and shoes is the day after Christmas. Last year we saw up to 60% off at American Eagle, 40% off at Banana Republic and Gap, and 50% off at J.Crew and Lands’ End. These deals were both online and in-store.
Clothing retailers are ready to dump excess Holiday inventory and definitely want to do it before the end of the year if they can.
It also doesn’t hurt that Spring styles are heading down the pike and stores need to make room. Finally a great time to buy winter apparel.
Buy Christmas Decor
This one is perhaps the most obvious way to save money after Christmas. Christmas decorations, ornaments, lights, nativity pieces, Christmas village pieces, and holiday decor will be seriously marked down right after Christmas.
We are talking like 70-80% off the original price making it a great time to stock up, box it up, and pull it out next December and enjoy the fruits of your bargain hunting labor. Key stores to look for deals include Target, Walmart, Macy’s, and Kmart.
Think Mother’s Day, Valentines & Father’s Day
To maximize your savings you need to think out of the box a little bit and consider upcoming gifts you’ll likely be buying.
Post Christmas deals can often be found on jewelry, home decor, tools, and personalized gift ideas making it a great time to buy (and store) gifts at a big discount.
By thinking and shopping ahead you can save hundreds of dollars over the course of an entire year. Be sure to keep a keen eye out for potential gift ideas that are a great deal this time of year.
For this one, you’re going to want to shop early in the morning on the 26th. As a matter of fact, plan on being there when the store opens to score a great deal on a new TV. The good deals will go pretty quickly.
You may not find great deals on top-tier brand name TV’s (those come in late January and February) but you should be able to get a great deal on brands like Element, Insignia, Ultra, RCA, Westinghouse, and Direct.
Wrapping Paper Deals
Of course you’re going to find HUGE deals on Christmas wrapping paper right after Christmas, but the savings doesn’t stop there. Look for wrapping paper that is not necessarily Christmas themed and doesn’t have Santa Claus plastered all over it.
My wife does this every year and stocks up (for pennies on the dollar) on wrapping paper that can be used for birthdays, graduations, and the like.
Historically, we have seen some great deals on laptops right after Christmas through the end of February, many topping what we saw on Black Friday.
Be sure to check the specs carefully as many of the great deals are on lower performing systems but if you are looking for a laptop in the $175 – $250 range you’ll want to shop between December 26 – 31.
Have Friends Who Are Expecting?
This is a tip that was first introduced to me by a friend a couple years ago. Do you have any friends who are expecting a baby in the near future?
Post-Christmas deals are a great time to shop for a baby shower gift as well as a newborn gift. Look for some great clearance deals at stores like Gymboree, Children’s Place, Hanna Andersson, and Babies R Us.
The wedding season might not be for another 5 months, but if you know you have a wedding to attend in the near future shop for your gift right after Christmas and save a butt load of money.
Ideas include housewares, dishware, home decor, and small appliances. Look for screaming deals at Macy’s, Mikasa, Pfaltzgraff, Bed Bath & Beyond, Nordstrom, and JCPenney.
Shopping for a new treadmill, weight set, or elliptical machine? Your time to score a great deal is coming really soon.
Specifically, start shopping for a deal right after Christmas with the best deals coming in the first week of January. The offers this time of year will be fantastic.
Also, if you can wait until January 1st you’re going to find that many furniture stores offer New Year’s sales making it great time to buy and save money.
Teacher and Coach Gifts
Another gift idea to consider buying right after Christmas is teacher and coach gifts. With 3 elementary aged kids of my own, all of whom are playing youth sports, I recently realized the benefit of shopping right after Christmas and storing gifts until I need them.
Also, consider picking up some screaming deals on Christmas ornaments to give to your child’s teacher next December. You’ll no longer will have to scramble around on December 18th trying to find a gift anymore.
I’m all about removing the stress of finding last minute gifts and this tip definitely fits that bill.
By Kyle James