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Should You Do Your Holiday Shopping on Amazon Prime Day?

A person with an amputated left limb uses a credit card and smartphone to shop online while outside.

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Many people spent money on Amazon’s Prime Day event in July. And now, the online retail giant is gearing up to host another mega sales event in October.

Dubbed Prime Big Deal Days, the two-day event is taking place Oct. 10 and 11. And you may want to take the opportunity to knock out your holiday shopping ahead of the season — especially if the deals that drop result in huge savings.

But while it’s easy to make the case for doing your holiday shopping during the upcoming Prime Day event, it can also be argued that that’s not necessarily the best idea. Here’s why.

You don’t want to miss out on other deals

Amazon might truly go heavy on discounts during Prime Big Deal Days. But if you max out your holiday budget during that event, you won’t have money left over for other major shopping events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. And during those events, the deals might be even better.

Of course, without a crystal ball, it’s impossible to know. But one good compromise may be to do some of your holiday shopping in October, but reserve some of your funds for November or December. That way, you’ll have an opportunity to capitalize on other sales events.

Also keep in mind that some retailers offer nice discounts in the weeks leading up to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. So sitting tight beyond October might result in a lower credit card tab.

You may not have finished saving money

At this point, we’re still well over a month away from Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and we’re more than two months away from Christmas. But we’re only days away from Amazon’s October Prime Day event.

The problem with doing your holiday shopping on Prime Day is that you may not have all that much money saved for it. And if you rack up a large credit card balance on Oct. 10 and 11, you might accrue some interest on it if you don’t have the cash to pay it off in full. That added interest could eat into or negate your Amazon savings.

Let’s say your plan was to pick up a seasonal side hustle from early October through late December to cover your holiday spending. If you started that side gig on Oct. 1, then chances are, it hasn’t really boosted your earnings all that much to date. So if that’s the case, you may want to limit what you buy in October until you’ve managed to save more.

A compromise may be your best bet

It’s hard to sit back and do nothing while an event like Prime Big Deal Days happens before your eyes. As such, a good compromise may be to do some of your holiday shopping on Oct. 10 and 11, but not all of it. That way, you can compare your options once other deals hit and keep growing your savings.

Also keep in mind that other retailers are apt to drop their fair share of deals in conjunction with Amazon’s October Prime Day event. Pay attention to what competitors like Target and Walmart are doing, so you’re able to make the most of your money.

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We’re firm believers in the Golden Rule, which is why editorial opinions are ours alone and have not been previously reviewed, approved, or endorsed by included advertisers.
The Ascent does not cover all offers on the market. Editorial content from The Ascent is separate from The Motley Fool editorial content and is created by a different analyst team.John Mackey, former CEO of Whole Foods Market, an Amazon subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool’s board of directors. Maurie Backman has positions in Amazon.com and Target. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Amazon.com, Target, and Walmart. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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