Shopping season is officially in full swing, with Black Friday sales, Thanksgiving deals, holiday gift guides, and shopping lists staring at you around every corner. 

Even before you can enjoy a Thanksgiving meal, you are bombarded with reminders of every gift you need to buy. Everything screams all the holiday savings you can take advantage of and the shopping you need to get done before the end of the year. It’s enough to make even the most experienced shopper get dizzy and overwhelmed. 

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But lucky for you, we have must-try tips and tricks to help you navigate sales, coupons, and discounts. This season, you can feel like a smart Latina shopper and make the most of your purchases.

It’s essential to understand what you’re dealing with in terms of holiday shopping

Braving stores and malls or spending time online this time of year is not for the faint of heart. Literally, everyone from coast to coast will be tackling their holiday shopping list over the next few weeks. Especially the days following Thanksgiving. 

According to the National Retail Federation, “holiday spending is expected to reach record levels during November and December and will grow between 3% and 4% over 2022 to between $957.3 billion and $966.6 billion.”

Yes, that’s a billion with a “B.” And yes, that signals a return to pre-pandemic spending levels during the holiday season, explains NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. To further complicate an already stressful shopping matter, experts predict higher prices this year due to inflation. 

“By analyzing prices across 100 million products in online stores between 2021 and 2022, a new report from PayPal’s Honey found that consumers will face higher costs in common gift categories this year. Prices of electronics and toys are up 11%, and jewelry is up a whopping 31%,” reports CNBC

The numbers don’t lie; experts believe this holiday spending season will be busier than we’ve seen in years. So, prepare now. Follow these simple tricks to help you navigate all the holidays happening now so you don’t fall into the typical retail traps this season. 

Avoid impulse purchases

First things first — do not click on the first price you see or grab the first item you are tempted by in a retail store. Impulse purchases are a fast and easy way to overspend and buy items you don’t actually want or need. 

According to data from a 2023 survey conducted by OnePoll, over one-third of respondents said that most of their shopping is impulse purchases. It’s the oldest trick in the book from merchandisers and retailers — offer free shipping, give an enticing discount, set up big-ticket near the checkout counter as a reminder to grab them before you checkout… All these tactics encourage impulse buying. And while this might work sometimes, more often than not, you end up buying items that aren’t on your list. 

Try to avoid impulse buys. Instead, stay organized and on task to take advantage of the deals that actually help your spending budget.

Make lists and check them twice

Speaking of staying organized, make lists. Yes, plural. You can make a list of must-buy items and a list of nice-to-have items. You can make a list for each family member or friend you plan to exchange gifts with, one for holiday decorations and party planning, or a list for Secret Santa gift exchanges. Just write down what you want to buy and for whom and keep them with you as you shop. 

Not only does it help keep you on task, but it also helps keep you within budget. Plus, it feels satisfying to check items off your lists as you go so you feel productive over the coming weeks. 

Fail to plan and plan to fail, and always track your discounts 

Plan out your shopping days and align those plans with big sales, promotions, free shipping offers, and minimal crowds when possible. 

You obviously know about Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but retailers often offer special sale events on other days throughout the season. Stores also have one-day blowout sales, and BOGO offers on popular items. So, keep an eye out for those offers before purchasing, especially big-ticket items. 

Implementing a price-tracking browser extension such as CamelCamelCamel or Keepa is also wise. These can do the dirty work for you and alert you to price drops on items you want. 

In addition, consumer-savings expert Andrea Woroch recommends that consumers stack discounts this season. This means you should combine credit card rewards with store coupons and further boost savings using a cashback site such as or Rakuten to earn money back on those purchases.

Embrace coupons

Coupons are not just for your grandmother’s or your parents’ generation of holiday shopping. It might not mean keeping a binder of coupon clippings like in their day. Still, today, coupon aggregator sites or tools such as and Rakuten can help you instantly access coupons and take advantage of cashback opportunities. 

Also, you should follow brands and retailers you love on social media or sign up for their email lists. They will then alert you to pop-up offers, send you one-time coupon codes, or even offer secret sales exclusive to loyal customers. 

Start early and make gradual progress 

Lastly, start early. And no, it’s not too late to be considered “early” to the holiday shopping party. While some people may have started their gift lists in July, you still have time if you’re hitting the stores and sites this week. Do not leave all your gifts until the end of December. Trust us, you’ll end up scrambling to find gifts that are not what you want and are overpriced. 

Take advantage of the sales and coupons out there, give yourself the gift of time to sift through the various retailer offers, and check off a portion of your holiday gift to-do list each day so you’re not stressed (which usually ends up with impulse purchases and overspending). 

Happy holiday shopping, everyone! Let the games begin, and may the odds be ever in your favor.