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Putting a millennial spin on holiday shopping

Remember the days when you simply woke up on Christmas morning to discover presents under the tree?What a nice, distant memory.

Now comes the time for us millennials to begin “adulting” — holiday-style.

We are now the ones buying presents for our significant other’s parents, our bosses, mentors, friends, families, and if we have anything left over, yes, we can and should still treat ourselves.

The National Retail Federation estimates that over 137 million people nationwide will shop online or in stores over this four-day Thanksgiving weekend.

And, according to trends and analytical predictions, us millennials are joining them in droves.

The NRF found that 77 percent of 18 to 24 year olds and 76 percent of 25 to 34 year olds plan to shop this weekend, with 86 percent of 18 to 24 year olds and 78 percent of 25 to 34 year olds planning specifically to shop on Black Friday.

But millennials beware: we also told PricewaterhouseCoopers that we (meaning, 18 to 34 year olds) plan to spend nearly $1,000 this Christmas, which is 26 percent more than last year.

While that number is still less than what Gen Xers and Baby Boomers said they plan to spend, that is still a lot of money.

What’s even more interesting, even though I harbor many doubts that the majority of us even have that kind of money, is that we are the generation that the NRF found most likely to spend more in order to purchase the perfect gift for someone or for an item that is extremely rare.

Gen Xers and Baby Boomers, on the other hand, are persuaded more by good deals on price and hassle-free return policies.

So, as we enter the realm of grown-up Christmas, let’s keep our spending in check — and not be that one out of eight shoppers who went more than $200 over budget last year.

Download Mint. Utilize your savings. Minimize credit card debt. Maybe look into Do-It-Yourself gifts. Shop local. Spread the joy, but remember not to spread your bank accounts too thin!

Meg Fry

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