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While plenty of people have been shopping for the holidays since October, for many, the official holiday shopping season doesn’t begin until Black Friday. If you’re able to kick off your shopping prior to that event, you can consider yourself to have started early.

Now, you may be inclined to wait until Black Friday to shop for Christmas gifts because that’s when major deals tend to show up. But getting moving even a week ahead of Black Friday could make for an easier shopping experience. Here’s why.

1. You can get ahead of supply chain issues

In 2021, many shoppers had a tough time finding the gifts they needed due to supply chain issues. We’re in a much better place today, thankfully, broadly speaking. But you still never know when an item that’s in high demand might run out. The sooner you shop, the less likely you’ll be to miss out on the items you want to get for your loved ones.

2. You can spread your payments out over two months instead of just one

Chances are, you’ll be paying for at least some of your Christmas gifts on a credit card. If you wait too long to start your shopping, you might end up with all of your Christmas purchases on the same statement, leading to a very large bill.

But if you start sooner, you can potentially spread out your payments over two billing cycles instead of just one. That could make your bills easier to manage.

3. You’ll have time to sign up for a new credit card with better perks

The right credit card could put cash back in your pocket this holiday season. The sooner you begin shopping, the sooner you might be motivated to look for a great rewards credit card whose generous program helps offset some of your holiday costs.

You might even find a card with a great sign-up bonus. And now’s a good time to chase one of those, since you’re probably spending a lot more money than usual (though to be clear, you should never overspend on a credit card and land in debt simply to get a sign-up bonus).

4. You might make smarter decisions if you aren’t feeling so rushed

Whether you’re planning a party, filing a tax return, or shopping for Christmas gifts, the more time you give yourself, the less rushed and stressed you’re apt to feel. That could help you avoid mistakes and make sound decisions. So even if you’re not worried about the items on your list selling out, and even if you’re not worried about managing your credit card payments or signing up for a new card, it still pays to give yourself extra time so you can tackle your gift list calmly.

Almost half of consumers started their holiday shopping before November last year, says the National Retail Federation. If you’ve missed that boat, though, don’t panic. Instead, pledge to begin your Christmas shopping this week. It might make the process much smoother from start to finish.

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We’re firm believers in the Golden Rule, which is why editorial opinions are ours alone and have not been previously reviewed, approved, or endorsed by included advertisers.
The Ascent does not cover all offers on the market. Editorial content from The Ascent is separate from The Motley Fool editorial content and is created by a different analyst team.JPMorgan Chase is an advertising partner of The Ascent, a Motley Fool company. Maurie Backman has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends JPMorgan Chase. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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