If you go to the malls, you’ll see holiday decorations with all the greens, reds and snowflakes. Christmas is in the air.
What else is in the air? Sales. SALES everywhere on every weekend at every mall.
A few weeks ago, most stores were selling everything for 40% off. Colognes that used to cost AED 90 per bottle are now AED 30 only and clothes are Buy 1 Get 1 free. Thanks to these retailers’ genius marketing that creates a flase sense of urgency, we are all tempted to go crazy.
Why not? After all, it happens only once a year. Right. When the credit card bill comes to your mailbox, will it still say “merry” or will it make you “worry”?
If you have saved up a certain amount for gift shopping, good for you! If not, it is still possible to enjoy and show your love by not over-spending. Check your balance and create a budget accordingly. You might also find these kuripot, budget-friendly ideas helpful:
Write a simple note for those who are abroad and send it via post. There is something so personal and sentimental about snail mails. A post card costs AED 3 to anywhere in the world, while cards in envelopes are weighed so they cost more depending on destination, which is around AED 6-11.
Create memories with your friends by going to the beach. Take your partner to watch the sunset or the fountain at Dubai Mall. You can also book a day at the museum or if you’re keen for something more action-packed, at the go-kart race track or paintball. Go to the spa with your mom or sister and have a nice massage (you can get nice deals from Groupon). Maybe a roadtrip with the family to other Emirates is also a good idea. How about a yoga class with your best friend? These are far more meaningful than any stuff, if you ask me.
Take some time to understand the person you are giving a gift to. You can easily spot a coffee-lover, chocolate-lover, wine-lover, cheese-lover, etc. A box of Patchi chocolates cost AED 50 while there are a number of coffee types and flavours at coffee shops. There are a myriad of cheeses at supermarkets and specialty shops. You just have to find the affordable, good quality products.
Baked goodies are always popular such as chocolate chip cookies, cupcakes, loaf bread, pies, cheese cake, brownies, ensaymada and brazo de mercedes. If you don’t have an oven, you can make Pinoy favourites such as puto, kutsinta, pichi pichi, leche flan using a steamer or if you’re not too keen on steaming then you can also try making maja blanca.
For dessert lovers, you can easily whip up macaroni salad (with chunks of cheese), fruit salad or buko pandan salad. There are thousands of salad recipes online. If you fancy a savoury dinner, homemade lechon belly sounds good, too!
If your family & friends have everything they need, your time, effort and thoughtfulness will be appreciated.
Be your own Santa and treat yourself too! After all, you have been good this year.