When most of us think of “preparing for Christmas”, we tend to primarily focus on two areas: the gifts we are going to buy for our loved ones, and the food we intend to eat during the holiday period. As a result, most “prep tips” will focus almost exclusively on these areas – but there’s a lot more to a truly well-managed Christmas than food and gifts alone.
To ensure you can enjoy as pleasant a festive period as possible, below, we’ve put together a Christmas prep guide that skips the obvious elements and instead focuses on the otherwise-undiscussed areas that require a little extra attention at this time of year…
#1 – Keep all holiday shipping changes in mind
Most mail carriers and couriers will implement holiday shipping deadlines in December; dates at which you must have sent an item in order to ensure it will arrive before Christmas. These deadlines vary, so if you intend to send gifts to loved ones out of state or overseas, give yourself plenty of time to ensure you make the deadline with ease. Similarly, most mail services will slow over the Christmas period due to the higher volume of mail and packages, so keep this in mind when placing orders online – even companies that usually guarantee two- or three-day shipping will likely struggle to meet this commitment by the time mid-December rolls around.
#2 – Order repeat prescriptions
If you are on any kind of medication, set a reminder to order a receipt prescription by December 20th. Doing this ensures you will have enough medication to cover the Christmas period – when many doctor’s offices will close – and give you time to cash the prescription at your pharmacy.
#3 – Schedule taxis for any parties you’re attending
If you’ll be attending Christmas parties, it’s usually best to plan your post-party journey home as far in advance as possible. A high number of DUI checkpoints are set up over the Christmas period, so if you’re planning to drink alcohol at all, a taxi is likely to be your best choice. In addition, it’s worth noting that the taxi journeys may cost more than you expect due to surge pricing, so try to account for this when budgeting for the festive period as a whole. Booking your taxi as early as possible will ensure the lowest price.
#4 – Consider the essential items
When imagining what you will need to buy for Christmas, it’s tempting to focus solely on the Christmas-related items; decorations, gifts, food, and so on. However, you also need non-Christmas items in order to enjoy those specific festive purchases; batteries, plates, can openers, parchment paper, glasses, scissors, and more. Take the time to think through all of your planned activities – and particularly your food plans – to ensure you’ll have all the essentials to hand as and when they are needed.
When you have considered – and acted upon, where necessary – all of the above, you can relax, safe in the knowledge that every aspect of the Christmas period is firmly under your control. Enjoy!