Pay attention to extra charges
Shipping, “convenience” fees, taxes -- they add up fast, and can easily go unnoticed until they’ve eaten up a big chunk of your budget. During the planning process, make sure these extras are factored into your spending. If you’ve budgeted $50 for your best friend and then find the perfect gift for $48, the taxes are gonna push you over. (Not that you shouldn’t buy it, but you’ll have to make up for that cost elsewhere.) Do your best to avoid fees entirely: shop locally in-person if possible, and if shipping is unavoidable, be sure to buy early enough to avoid express delivery fees. Also, if you need to mail a gift, speak to the retailer directly or adjust the shipping address when you check out online -- doing so will save you on postage (and a trip to the post office).