7 things to buy early this holiday season


It might not be the best idea to wait for Black Friday sales to begin before getting started with your …

Waiting for the Black Friday sale to roll out before starting your Christmas shopping may not be the best idea. Supply chain bottlenecks and delivery delays mean that the longer you wait to make your purchase, the more likely it is to have limited stocks, longer delivery times and fewer discounts.

If you’re planning on getting started with your Christmas shopping now, here are some items that might prove to be a little more of a chore to cross off your shopping list.

– Technology and electronics.

– toys.

– Books.

– Domestic appliances.

– clothing.

– Furniture.

– Vacation articles.

Technology and electronics

Not even tech giants are immune to the challenges of global scarcity. All kinds of tech products could be in short supply this holiday season, and some will sell out much faster than in the past.

The pandemic has disrupted production while driving demand for electronics at home soaring. Not to mention, there’s a microchip shortage that makes things worse. As a result, businesses are struggling to keep up and stores and ecommerce sites are receiving less inventory than expected.

Since the release of the Sony PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X and S last year, gaming consoles have had ongoing inventory problems. Nintendo also announced that it will manufacture 20% fewer Switch consoles than planned for the fiscal year. The chip shortage has forced electronics companies to cut down on console production, but demand remains high despite the decline. If you’re lucky enough to find another one, don’t expect discounts.

Other vacation hot ticket items that you might want to buy early on include popular smartphones like the latest iPhones and Samsung Galaxy phones. Apple is one of the largest chip buyers in the world, but is likely to have to cut its forecasted production targets for the iPhone 13 by up to 10 million units in 2021.

[See: 9 Holiday Shopping Habits That Will Make You Go Broke]


Dealers are also warning of a major toy shortage this season. While you will surely be able to find toys, finding the reasonably priced toy at the top of your child’s gift list may be another story.

Mattel, maker of popular brands like Barbie, Hot Wheels, and Fisher-Price, announced during the company’s second-quarter conference call that it will raise prices in the second half of the year before the holiday season to offset rising production costs and shipping. Hasbro, whose brands include Playskool, Nerf, My Little Pony and Transformers, also announced potential plans to raise toy and game prices in time for the holiday season.

While retailers have been preparing for this for much of the year, potential inventory shortages due to the high demand for toys could outweigh the ability to deliver. MGA Entertainment, the maker of LOL Surprise, only has enough inventory to fill 65% of its pending orders.

Toys that sell out quickly can also take much longer to be replaced with new inventory. So if you want to get hold of this year’s popular toys, act fast.


In August, the American Booksellers Association reported that the book supply chain is facing a number of challenges, including truck driver shortages and limited freight capacity, warehouse labor shortages, congested ports and high freight container costs. Publishers of all sizes report printing problems that result in slower fulfillment times.

Christmas shoppers are encouraged to buy early if they want to purchase specific titles.

[See: Amazon Alternatives for Online Shoppers.]

domestic appliances

Shopping for appliances this holiday season? Maybe you are unlucky. Experts say that if you have a particular kitchen or laundry appliance in mind, you may not get it for several weeks or even months. Getting parts to manufacturers and machines to distributors and retailers was a struggle.

If you have an urgent need for a device, see an independent dealer first or consider replacing it. If you can wait, put yourself on a waiting list or sign up for notifications when your favorite model is back in stock. Experts also say that while there may be some promotions on limited products for large appliances over the holidays, they don’t expect the same discounts as in previous years.


Due to the pandemic-induced factory closings in Vietnam, one of the largest suppliers of clothing and shoes in the USA, more and more American retailers are expecting delays and bottlenecks as well as higher prices for labor and shipping costs. Nike reported that it takes its products twice as long to reach North America. Lululemon and Gap also depend on factories in Vietnam, which recently allowed factories to open despite limited labor.

Cotton prices have also hit a 10-year high that could eventually be passed on to buyers. Cotton can be found in a number of products, including jeans, t-shirts, and underwear. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, prices rose most in the past year for men’s shirts and sweaters, men’s trousers and shorts, and women’s clothing.


If you are thinking of ordering a new couch, carpet or upholstered bed, you can wait until the middle of next year to get it delivered. Furniture makers and retailers are reporting a combination of COVID-related issues, increased demand for home furnishings, poor weather conditions and a lack of upholstery foam pushing deliveries into the next year.

[Read: Best Budget Apps.]

Vacation articles

Popular Christmas decorations, cards, food, and more may be hard to come by and will likely sell out well in advance. Big box home improvement retailers like Home Depot and Lowe’s quickly sold out Halloween decorations, suggesting that Christmas decorations could be even more in demand this year.

Global supply bottlenecks have reduced the number of artificial Christmas trees available, and retailers may be forced to raise prices to offset shipping costs. Christmas lights, ornaments and wreaths can also be scarce this year.

There have been warnings that some holiday staples, such as fresh turkey and Thanksgiving ham, may be harder to come by at grocery stores. While experts say it’s not necessarily a shortage, it might be harder to find a fresh bird. Buyers may also notice higher turkey prices due to the skyrocketing cost of grain feed.

While starting your Christmas shopping early doesn’t mean you can find everything you need at a discounted price, you will most likely be luckier than waiting for Black Friday sales to shop online or in stores.

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7 things to buy early this holiday season originally appeared on usnews.com

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