Plan now for holiday shopping, save money

Some say the trick is start saving money and your planning now
November 11, 2013 6:04:10 AM PST
The busy holiday shopping season is around the corner so don't let it sneak up on you. The trick to saving money is to start your planning now.

Making lists is a good idea but a website or a mobile device may be all you need this holiday shopping season. It could take the stress out of shopping.

Santa may have it all figured out but some shoppers say the holiday shopping season can be chaotic.

"Getting it done on time," said one shopper.

"Just trying to figure out what to get each person I am going to give to," said another shopper.

This year we have less time to get it done. Because Thanksgiving is so late it's only a 25-day span between Black Friday and Christmas, the shortest shopping season in over a decade.

"Less time to find the hot toys, less time to find the great deals," said Andrew Swick with

Houston Entrepreneur Swick and his sister launched a website called

"Checked twice is an online gift registry for families," said Swick. "It makes your holiday shopping easy fast and fun."

Much like with its pin board-style and photo-sharing features, Checked Twice works the same way, it's a simple and organized way to pin gifts you and your loved ones want and it's free.

"Once you signed up, you can add gifts from any store, you can add gifts from any Amazon or any online retailer," Swick said.

Here is how the site works, create a wish list containing items you want from around the web. Then Invite people in your gift circle to join so they can add to their own wish list and be linked to others.

You can add to your wish list by copying a link or using the tool bar button. You can also scan products out at retailers using the checked Twice app on your mobile device.

When you are ready to purchase a gift, you can do so directly from and it will even let others in your circle know it's been claimed.

"All secrets stay secret, all surprises stay surprises but everyone can see that I have claimed that," said Swick.

The other reason to start organizing now, whether you use the site or not, hot toys will be hard to find closer to Christmas plus a tight budget means you have to plan early.

Find Patricia on Facebook at ABC13PatriciaLopez or on Twitter at @patricialopez13

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