Photo: Anastasia Shuraeva/Pexels
From the nightmare of shopping centre parking to the painfully slow progression of checkout lines, there’s nothing worse than dealing with the holiday shopping crush. With the ‘Rona still biting at our heels, we have even more of an imperative to avoid the mainstream shopping crowd.
One of the best ways to avoid the crowds is to do your shopping with small local businesses. Not only will you save yourself a lot of stress, but you’ll also be giving back to the community in a powerful way. Read on for five ways you can support small Aussie businesses this Christmas:
1. Simplify your Christmas shopping with hampers
There are some incredible Australian Christmas hampers on the market, and the benefits of investing in them are multitudinous. You get to support a local business and local brands, treat your loved ones to some traditional Aussie delights, and handle everything online with a few easy clicks. The hamper company will deliver your selections to the recipients’ doors, and in some instances, you may even be able to snag free shipping.
2. Vouchers for local stores
If there’s a local business you or your loved ones adore, why not pick up a few vouchers to use as gifts? Vouchers are a great way to show you care while giving people the freedom to select their own perfect gift. However, they can feel a little cold. So, to add a personal touch, you can present them in a beautiful Christmas card or tuck them in with a little package of homemade Christmas treats.
3. The gift of experience
If you have a friend or family member who always talks about horse riding or skydiving or hot air ballooning, you have the perfect opportunity to surprise them with an incredible experience gift while supporting an Aussie business. Find a local enterprise that offers the experience your loved one has been hankering for, and organise a gift voucher. If it’s a bit beyond your budget to pay for the full experience, see if you can get a group together to chip in.
4. Visit your local arts and crafts market
If it’s safe to do so (we are in the midst of a pandemic, after all), a trip to an arts and craft market can reveal a bounty of beautiful, unique gifts. In addition to getting one-off masterpieces for your loved ones, you’ll be doing a good deed by supporting local artisans. Really, what you’re doing is giving two gifts at once, which is pretty special.
5. Share the love
While it’s great to do all your Christmas shopping locally, you can multiply your good deed by sharing your gift buying adventures with friends and family. Social media is a great place to do this. Though you don’t want to give away any of the surprises, you can post about the shops you’ve visited, follow their social media pages, and leave them positive reviews if you’re happy with their service. Though these gestures seem small, every comment, follow, and positive review they receive does a lot of good, especially now that online is more crucial than ever.
Though the pandemic has thrown life into chaos, it has also made many of us rethink our holiday habits. Take the opportunity to shop locally this Christmas. Support the small businesses that have been struggling to survive this year, and share gifts with your loved ones that do good in more than one way.