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Shopping in any city can be stressful and chaotic, especially before the holidays. If you’re in Washington for the gift-giving season and want to get some awesome deals while not being too overwhelmed we’ve got you covered. Here are some of our holiday shopping survival tips to get you through.

Tip #1: Make a List (& check it twice!)

Organization is key. Before you go anywhere sit down, make a list. You’ll want to figure out who you’re shopping for and their interests. We always suggest thinking outside the box. If there’s a new mother in the family, maybe get her one of these stroller sleeping bags from Little Birdie Boutique in Georgetown. Those looking for classic gifts, like clothes, also have plenty to choose from. 

Tip #2: Research, Research, Research!

Take those items that you came up with in the previous tip and look up which places offer the best deals. To make your life a little easier we’ve put together some running promotions at various shops.

Madewell

  • 30% off select shoes, bags, sweaters, and jeans
  • Free Gift with $150 purchase (IN STORES ONLY)

Victoria’s Secret

  • 7 for $27 panties
  • 50% off ALL sweaters
  • 30% off all beauty sets
  • Pajamas for $39.50

Urban Outfitters

  • 30% off cold weather gear (hats, scarves, and gloves)

Forever 21

  • 50% off winterwear (gloves, hats, scarves)
  • 30% off boots and booties
  • Holiday gifts starting at $4

JCrew

  • 25% off purchase of $100+
  • 30% off purchase of $150+

SECRET TIP

For extra coupons and discounts, sign up for email promotions when shopping in store. First time shoppers often get additional coupons that can be combined.

Tip #3: Make a Game Plan

Once you’re down rounding up all your gift ideas, it’s time to plan your plan of attack. We think it’s best to get out there with an idea of where to go first, which route makes the most sense, etc. It can be a little overwhelming sitting down and coming up with a plan, so let’s us help you out. Below we’ve listed what we think is a great game plan for the DC shopping scene.

Stop #1 – Georgetown:

Georgetown has some of the city’s best shopping, with shops ranging from Urban Outfitters to J.Crew to Alex and Ani all within a few blocks. Plus you can stop by Baked & Wired for a sweet treat!

Stop #2 – Tyson’s Corner & Tysons Galleria

Located just 15 minutes from downtown DC, Tyson’s corner is one of the hottest shopping spots in town. The two-part mall (Tyson’s Corner and Tyson’s Galleria) offer tons of unique shops. Here’s what to expect.

Tyson’s Corner

  • Lush- Perfect for the person who is into organic beauty and bath products (that often smell like pomegranates and roses)
  • Victoria’s Secret- Fantastic for anyone looking for anything from comfy pajamas to cute underwear. Plus this particular shop is one of the biggest stores in the area with two levels and platinum TV screens, which play the fashion show on repeat.
  • Vera Bradley- Good for the girl who’s looking for bags, wallets and travel items with funky floral patterns!

Tyson’s Galleria

  • Coach- Great for the girl who loves upscale bags and shoes.
  • Vineyard Vines- Nice for the person who loves pastels and cute mini whale patterns!
  • Michael Kors- Perfect someone looking for something extra special this season, this iconic designer brand carries everything from high heels to watches.

Tip #4: Enjoy!

This season is one of the biggest excuses to go shopping, so you might as well enjoy it like you do every other time of the year! We suggest going with a friend or family member and stopping for a snack every now and again. It’s always better when you’ve got a shopping buddy. Check out some of our favorite coffee spots, listed below, where you can grab a latte before hitting the shops. (We’ll also list a few of our favorite happy hour spots for some much needed after-shopping relaxation.)

Our Favorite Coffee Shops

What: Baked & Wired

This yummy cupcake and coffee cafe is perfect for those with a sweet tooth, or just those who are looking for a pick me up. From espressos to lattes there’s you’ll definitely be able to get your caffeine fix here. Check out their menu here.

Where: 1052 Thomas Jefferson St NW, Washington, DC 20007

What: Saxbys Coffee

This quaint corner cafe is where you’ll be able to get anything from frozen coffee drinks to herbal teas. Check out the menu here.

Where: 3500 O St NW, Washington, DC 20007

What: Cafe Bonaparte

This adorable little French cafe has not only delicious coffee options like macchiatos but they also offer lunch, dinner, and crapes! Check out their menu here.

Where: 1522 Wisconsin Ave NW, Washington, DC 20007

Best Happy Hours

Where: On The Border

When: 4pm to 7pm (BAR & PATIO ONLY)

    • $3 appetizers options
    • $4 appetizers options
    • $5 appetizer  options
    • $3 select beers
    • $4 to $5 select drinks

Location: 8053 Leesburg Pike, Vienna, VA 22182 (Directly across from Tysons Corner)

Full happy hour menu here.

Where: The Gordon Biersch

When: 4 to 6:30pm

    • $1 off all lagers & ales
    • $2 off glasses of wine
    • $5 all premium cocktails
    • $2-$4 small plates

Location: 7861 Tysons Corner Center, McLean, VA 22102 (Inside Tysons Corner)

Full happy hour menu here.

Where: Brio Tuscan Grille (BAR ONLY)

When: 3:30 to 6:30

    • $4 select drinks & small plates
    • $5 select drinks & small plates
    • $6 select drinks & small plates

Location: 7854 Tysons Corner Center, McLean, VA 22102 (Inside Tysons Corner)

Full happy hour menu here.