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Holiday Shopping

Posted on Friday, November 13, 2020
The holidays are quickly approaching - and with COVID happening this year, shopping may look a little different. Family Watchdog wants to highlight some ways to shop and save for the upcoming Holiday season!

Many stores are opting out of the traditional Black Friday sale rush and going online instead. This allows their workers to actually spend the holiday with their family - which is amazing on one hand, and scary on the other since people are not supposed to be gathering over the holidays due to COVID. With that being said, we think it's a great idea to shut the stores down and allow employees to celebrate, however that may look for them.

So you can look forward to skipping out of the traditional Black Friday rush this year. Many stores are going online and releasing a few hot items each week - breaking up the sale over the next few weeks. Which makes it nice because most items will be delivered to your doorstep. You can do a Google search to what sales are coming up at your favorite stores. Family Watchdog suggests using a printable calendar and making a plan. List the release dates, items and stores you want to shop so you can better spend your money and plan for the shopping season.

Are you strictly doing online shopping only? We suggest using a secure online payment option when given the opportunity. PayPal is great at securing your online payments.
- Make sure you are shopping a trusted site and not a third party site. Last month, there was a "Peg Pergo" website that looked like the real site and sold toys that looked like the real site would be selling. The prices were REALLY low for the items they were selling - a tell-tale sign of a false site. If it looks too good to be true, it just might be.
- Look for the lock. Your URL should have HTTPS instead of HTTP. This means the site (and payment) is secure.
- Never overshare. No online shopping site will need your birthday or social security number to shop.
- Keep a list of online log ins and passwords. Use strong passwords, including capital and lowercase numbers, as well as numbers and special characters. Try to switch it up from site to site.
- Check your bank statements regularly to make sure there are no weird charges or reoccurring charges that you did not authorize.
- Always make sure your network is secure as well as your computer security when doing online shopping.

With the COVID pandemic, many small businesses are suffering. Consider shopping small and helping out local businesses in your community before going to a big box store for Christmas shopping. Everyone loves personalized items, which look better when handmade!

So get that holiday shopping plan around and ease into the shopping spree this year!