Most Americans say they're spending about $679 on Christmas gifts. That's about $20 less than last year, according to the latest Consumer Reports poll.
The good news... they aren't maxing out their credit cards to get the job done.
Consumer Reports senior editor, Tod Marks was surprised where they're getting the cash.
He says, "More and more Americans are actually using gift cards to finish their holiday gift purchases. In other words, they're taking those gift cards that they've been receiving to some extent and buying gifts for other people."
Tod says in the past... one in four Americans didn't even use the gift cards they received. Instead they left them in a drawer or closet to collect dust.
Another finding... 10% of people say they won't be done shopping till Christmas Eve and 5% admit... they won't finish till after Christmas. In fact, some say they're waiting for that last killer deal.
Consumer Reports also found more people are buying gifts online. But the numbers are way up. Get this, last year 29% of Americans shopped on the internet. This year that number is 44%. The perception... that the best values can be found on the web.
Tod adds, "The fact that so many retailers are offering free shipping, even free expedited shipping this year... sweetens the pot."
Other advantages to online shopping... it's easy to compare merchandise and prices and you save on gasoline.... getting you out of the cold and traffic.
Plus, by googling and searching for coupons... you can save yourself extra dough.
One last finding, that's no surprise. Consumer Reports says men are the biggest procrastinators.
The survey found half of the men surveyed hadn't even begun their Christmas shopping.
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