Why You Might Want To Hire Someone Else To Do All of Your Holiday Shopping — and What It Costs

cropped shot of female hand holding paper bag with presents.
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The holidays are fast approaching, and with them, your holiday shopping list. If the idea of holiday shopping exhausts, aggravates or overwhelms you, you might want to consider hiring a personal shopper or other means of doing your holiday shopping that does not involve setting a single foot in a mall or store. Here are some reasons you might want to outsource your gifts this year.

Busy With Work

One reason you might want to use a holiday personal shopper is if you are overworked, said Sarah Jameson, marketing director of Green Building Elements. “Not everyone has a lot of vacation time during the holidays. If you’re one of the folks that work a lot around the holidays, you’re undoubtedly tired of it. After a long day at work, you probably don’t want to go shopping.”

The good news, she said, is that you don’t have to — you can hire a holiday personal shopper to do it for you. “You simply tell them how many people you need to buy for, whether they are women or men, boys or girls, and what they might like, and the shopper will take care of the rest.”

Moreover, there are ways to narrow the shopper’s focus or channel a personal shopper’s skills, “such as focusing on an in-store specialist who can assist you select products right there in the store, or private concierges who commit their time to build a closet full of new, beautiful purchases for you.”

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It Saves You Time

While it may appear that all we have these days is time on our hands, this is simply not the case, said Tyson Stevens, founder of the educational resource EduRef. “Yes, we spend more of our waking hours indoors, but those hours never seem to be enough, especially if you have a family to look after. Working from home, chores, homeschooling (if you have school-aged children), attending to your basic requirements, sanitizing items–the list goes on–the day slips through our fingers all too easily. A personal shopper can take your holiday shopping off your already overburdened hands, freeing up your time for other important things.”

It’s Too Stressful

Very few people see joining the masses in the malls as their idea of a good time. If the idea of crowds is not your thing, or you’d rather spend your downtime after work relaxing, Tanner Arnold, president and CEO of Revelation Machinery, said, “all you have to do is get in touch with a holiday personal shopper. Then you can unwind, knowing that you don’t have to rush about getting all of the gifts for those parties.”

They Can Help You Stay Within a Budget

With a personal shopper, said Kyle MacDonald, director of operations with Force by Mojio, you give them a list, general ideas for gifts and a set budget, and they can do the work for you.

If hiring a personal shopper is too expensive, however, he recommends “teaming up with a trust loved one or family member, and tag-teaming presents and shopping altogether.”

Crowds Cause Anxiety

“We’ve all seen how busy the stores become over the holidays,” said Hassan Usmani, tech expert at YEELIGHT. “Getting food is challenging even if you aren’t shopping for a large group. Everyone is out and about, either looking for last-minute gifts or starting their holiday shopping for the first time. As a result, every store you visit is likely to be crowded.”

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If traveling to stores with large crowds makes you nervous, he said you might benefit from hiring a holiday personal shopper. “They can handle your shopping, so you don’t have to deal with the crowds.”

You Want To Give Back To Yourself

Personal shoppers don’t only help with purchasing gifts for others, said Matt Weidle, business development manager of Buyer’s Guide, which reviews products. “Personal shoppers… also aid to increase a client’s confidence in the choosing and purchasing process, as well as help them establish their own sense of style.” He points to upmarket department stores, which offer this service to give their customers as a “world-class” experience.

Be Aware of the Costs

If you are going to outsource your shopping, be aware of how much it will cost you. According to Kamyar KS, founder and CEO of World Consulting Group, the national average price range for personal shoppers is $120 to $200 per hour, though he said pricing can vary depending on where you live and the reputation of the shopper.

“Large cities like New York and Los Angeles have higher hourly costs on average…while smaller cities have stylists charging less than a hundred dollars an hour.”

Investigate Alternatives

If the personal shopper approach doesn’t work for you, remember that there are still services such as Instacart, curbside pickup and online shopping for almost any retailer you can imagine. Just be sure to order your gifts early enough so that supply chain disruptions don’t ruin your fun.

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