Whether you’re super frugal or not, I am going to let you in on a little money-saving secret…

The day after Christmas, you can stock up on wrapping paper, Christmas decorations, and all the other goodies you wanted, but at a much lower price. Commonly known as “Exchange Day” by all the retailers, the day after Christmas sales designs.

With most people typically having off December 26th, the big box stores know people are looking to exchange their unwanted and wrong-sized Christmas gifts, and they tempt consumers to spend while they’re at it.

However, there is some huge day after Christmas sales you can really take advantage of when you use these simple steps below!

Update for 2020: Be sure to keep in mind COVID restrictions may impact retail stores in your location. Obviously, if you decide to shop out and about, exercise proper safety measures! 

3 Simple Steps to Take Advantage of Day After Christmas Sales

1. Browse the Christmas Isles & Big Box Stores

Many of the big box retailers have to unload all of their Christmas stuff they didn’t sell. This includes:

  • Christmas Decorations
  • Christmas Gift Wrapping & Packaging
  • Christmas Themed Candy & Foods
  • Anything else that is Christmas themed!

Knowing that people will be in the store, they first start with creating isles, typically in the back or sides of the story, with all the leftover Christmas stuff at a discounted rate. While the rate may vary, some items are marked 25% off and sometimes 50% off.

Looking to really up their sales before the slowest retail month of the year (January), stores also look to attract consumers and shoppers to get other things.

Clothing stores, appliance stores, and electronics are often sold at discounted rates – sometimes lower than before Christmas – with special incentives.

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What to shop for:

Not everything is on sale. Just because you’re out shopping the day after Christmas doesn’t mean your groceries or hand towels will not be on sale (unless they’re Christmas towels). Obviously, holiday-themed items are on sale and will continue to be reduced each day from the day after Christmas all the way up to the New Year.

That being said, what to look for the following:

  • The aforementioned Christmas themed items (Never pay full price for wrapping paper again).
  • Winter items like jackets, boots, sweaters
  • Home decor
  • Gift-like items (Colognes, toiletry sets, etc.)

Pro Shopper Tip: Ask for the actual receipt when applicable from family members instead of a gift receipt. You will get more back on the return. Another option is to ask for gift cards instead of actual gifts if you have family members who always give you clothes!

2. Use Apps to Save Bigger!

The best way to take advantage of shopping deals is in person, down in the discount isles' deep realms. That being said, if you’re not one for crowds and you’re looking to avoid others because of COVID, then you can check out apps to see what kind of deals are out there too.

Rakuten

Rakuten is a popular retail shopping app that is formerly known as eBates. Users earn points which they can redeem for cash back after they spend money shopping. Rakuten has partnerships with over 2,500 online retailers and stores, making it the perfect place to go the day after Christmas to find sales!

Features of Rakuten include coupons, deals, promotions, and of course, the cashback features for your purchasing. Since it’s inception in 1997, Rakuten has paid out over $800 million in cashback. Obviously, you have to spend to make, but why not get a little cashback if you planned on spending already?

Check out this full review from Your Money Geek on Rakuten here to learn more!

Groupon

From group vacation deals to dining, Groupon has everything to offer, including online shopping deals. This is a great app or shopping website to consider for your day after Christmas shopping shenanigans.

Whether you’re looking for a discounted oil change or perhaps you’re even scrambling to get a gift for someone you haven’t seen yet/or forgot about, Groupon is a great place to start. Some cool features Groupon offers includes:

  • Deal of the day
  • Support local businesses with their shop local tab
  • Unique offers in dining, travel, and service
  • Visit Groupon Here. 

Amazon

As if you needed an introduction, the term that once identified a river in South America is no infamous as the largest online retailer… Amazon.

Amazon is similar to the big box retail stores in that it is looking to unload some merchandise before the New Year so that you can take advantage of that from the comfort of your home.

Visit the Amazon Year-End Sales page and get to shopping. Whether you’re looking for books, gadgets, more Christmas-themed stuff – whatever – you can shop online at Amazon and find some amazing day after Christmas sales.

Ibotta

Unlike Rakuten, which is known for its retail bargains, Ibotta is typically ideal for grocery and everyday shopping. Still, the popular cashback app can offer someday after Christmas sales if you browse the right sections.

Regardless of whether Ibotta has a specific sale on the app or not, one thing you can always do after you shop is simply scanned your receipts or use the Ibotta app to check out when you go to pay. Doing this will help you earn rewards, which mean cashback!  You can also shop with Amazon through Ibotta!

>> Chek this Ibotta Review 2021

3. Use the Week After Christmas Method

Use this with caution, because there is always the chance you might not find what you’re looking for, but the week after the day after Christmas is when you can really save some money!

Now beginning to hit panic mode with Valentine’s Day fast approaching, retailers are desperately looking to unload the leftover Christmas excess to find more floor space for their boxed chocolate displays.

This when the somewhat ransacked Christmas isles start to become littered with 75% off signs and “Buy One Get One Free in This Section” promotions. Whether you’re looking to scoop up a new Christmas tree or grab some more wrapping paper – now is your time!

Lastly, one of the best Christmas savings tips is to do your Christmas shopping the day after Christmas or subsequent days after. If you’re someone who is super organized and well-budgeted, the days after Christmas are some of the best opportunities to score gift like items for people.

For example, last year, I bought some items for my step-siblings that I knew they would enjoy this year for Christmas!

Side Hustle Idea: If you’re a hustler and like to sell things online, a novel idea is to flip items you buy at a discounted rate. Things like winter wear and fake Christmas trees offer great resale value, and if you can, hold on.

The Verdict

The day after Christmas usually starts with sleeping in, followed by a trip to a local strip mall or retail center near you. At least, that is how it used to be in my family when we were growing up.

With the increase in online shopping, combined with COVID, perhaps the best bet is to look online. But if you want to find a fake Christmas tree for 50% off or you’re like me, and you can’t stand to buy full price wrapping paper, then December 26th is your date to get some sweet sales!

Just be sure you have a list, don’t spend recklessly, and also keep this one last point in mind:

Make sure you have storage for all the deals you plan on capitalizing on! Fifty rolls of wrapping paper and 10 fake Christmas trees can take up quite a bit of space for 364 days!

About the Author

Josh Hastings

Josh writes about ways to make money, pay off debt, and improve yourself. After paying off $200,000 in student loans with his wife in less than four years, Josh started Money Life Wax and has been featured on Forbes, Business Insider, Huffington Post and more! In addition to being a life-long entrepreneur, Josh and his wife enjoy spending time with their chocolate lab named Morgan, working out, helping others with their debt and recommend using Personal Capital to track your finances.

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