While a number of us only start buying gifts at the very last minute, many Singaporeans actually have a habit of shopping for presents as early as June. An acquaintance of mine proudly remarked over Twitter in mid-October that his Christmas shopping was complete! This early accomplishment was a combined effort from his recent travels and a few apt shopping trips during the Great Singapore Sale in June and July.
While this may sound very much like "kiasuism" at work, taking in consideration the busy schedules that most of us keep, it is not difficult to see why such a practice has taken root in our society. With deadlines at work, the required preparation for our children's new school year, and social events to plan for in the coming year-end festivities, it makes sense to start the shopping early. Not only do you get to avoid the last minute crowds, you also get ample time to carefully plan your purchases (as well as your finances) to ensure that your gifts are perfectly catered for their intended receivers.
Aside from shopping for the important people in your life, Christmas is also a time when most of us indulge in some retail therapy for ourselves. After all, few locals will pass on a good sale and the ones in December are touted as each year's best, with deep discounts and attractive promotions on a wide array of merchandise. What else would you wear to those parties on Christmas and New Year's Eve? And while you're at it, might as well get those matching shoes and bags too!