Ready for a New Kind of Holiday Season?
by Naomi Anderson, LSC
CAP Executive Member

Take a stressful year, add some holiday pressure, and what do you get? A cry for help!

Fortunately, there are some simple steps that can help make the holiday season less stressful for you and your members. Below are some tips on how to take advantage of holiday shopping trends to make the most of the holidays without getting overwhelmed.

Take advantage of online ordering.

With the colder weather, experts are predicting a resurgence in coronavirus cases. Many stores are prepared. They’re encouraging people to shop online while increasing their capacity for curbside pick-ups. There are reasons to take advantage of this service that go beyond health and safety. Often provided as a free service, it can be a great way to save shopping time. Rather than gathering the items yourself, you can simply drive up and have everything placed in your car.

Start shopping now.

According to Business Insider, increased online ordering has shipping providers predicting a backlog this season. This can cause headaches for last minute shoppers looking to get their orders in time for holiday celebrations. Another issue mentioned by Business Insider is the fact that store inventory is lower and stock may run out fast. It also notes there are likely to be fewer deals later in the season, so shopping as early as possible can help members take advantage of more opportunities to save.

Keep gift giving simple and practical.

A still unstable economy means tight budgets for most people and more concerns about spending money. Gift cards are a simple, practical option. They are also easy to buy and send. Gift cards keep the guesswork out of what will fit within budget and the giver can enjoy knowing recipients will be able to get what they truly want or need. This is especially true of open-loop gift cards versus cards associated with a particular store. Open-loop cards also frequently offer fraud protection.

Combine holiday activities.

Just like summer vacation, winter break adds pressure to find safe entertainment options for the family. This calls for multitasking. Look for ways to get the whole family involved in holiday preparations.  Make decorating into a mini holiday party with music. Assign everyone a decorating task and hand out small prizes to all the kids in different categories like “most creative” or “fastest decorator.” Instead of shopping, making holiday gifts can be a family activity. Apps are another fun resource. Look for apps that blend entertainment like reading or games with charitable causes to help kids learn to share with others.

While the pandemic has changed the way we do many things, we don’t have to let it steal our holiday joy. These tips can help members adapt holiday preparations to work with the current flow of daily life. You can also remind members of how credit union offerings like gift cards can help simplify their holiday shopping or even their year-round budgeting. 

Today’s article was written by Naomi Anderson, Vice President of Prepaid for LSC. At LSC, our philosophy is simple- we help our credit unions compete. We are your comprehensive, one-stop shop for payment services. Our team works directly with your credit union to create a new game plan to make you stronger and increase your wins. The bottom line is it's our job to see credit unions succeed. Visit our website to learn more or contact Steven Ryniec, Senior Director, Sales Leadership at LSC.



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