Best day for holiday shopping is later in the season; buy gifts after December 17

Procrastination may save you money

TAMPA - Black Friday left shoppers fighting for deals in malls across America including in California and Texas.

Cyber Monday is expected to have the biggest number of online shoppers to date this year -- breaking a record of 130-million people.

But if you still have gifts to buy, many experts say patience will pay off.

"That's actually the time right before December 24 when you get really good bargains in time for Christmas shopping or Christmas gifts.  Now if you can afford to be patient, it's not for gifts for others, it's for your stockpiling, chances are you will get better deals in January," said Dr. Dip Biswas.

Biswas, with USF's Marketing department, says if you procrastinate until December 17, the final week before Christmas, it may save you money.  This shopping season is extra long this year with five shopping weekends which is one more than average.  Retailers and e-tailers will push to make their quota only toward the end.

December 17 may be the best day to shop online.  It's close to eclipsing Cyber Monday for sales. Nearly one-thousand retailers that are listed on www.freeshippingday.com promise just that and more.

"We saw a lot of those offers last year where it was free shipping plus 20, 30, 40-off all orders. I think we're going to see much more of that this year as well," said Kendal Perez, the website's spokesperson.

So plan or procrastinate it's up to you. Remember if you wait, there are downsides as well.

"The other downside is you may not have something that you really like or maybe not in your size or maybe not in the design that you're looking for so that's a risk that some customers may or may not want to take," Biswas.

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