In the U.S. Boxing Day is not recognized by Americans and is known as a popular day after Christmas for shopping at discounted rates, it is still quite the shopping day in America. It’s a day where stores and malls are packed with people using gift cards, returning gifts, or looking for those post-Christmas deals.
Where did the tradition come from?
Boxing Day is traditionally celebrated in all of Great Britain and also Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. The holiday is observed by many businesses, particularly post offices, banks, and government offices. This is an age-old tradition that has been in existence since 1871.
Boxing Day is generally celebrated in conjunction with the Feast of St. Stephen, who was one of the seven original deacons ordained by the Apostles of the Christian Church to take care of the widows and the indigent.
What are the ways to spend the day?
It is all about giving to the poor and needy because this year has been an emotional journey with many people in need of desperate help. Your contribution can bring a huge difference and what better occasion do you need to serve them than Boxing Day?
Here are a few ways to do your bit:
Honor Those Who Serve
One of the oldest and most popular traditions of Boxing Day is to give a gift of money to those people who provide you with services throughout the year. When this tradition started, it was a day that the wealthy gave off to their servants. The wealthy would give a box containing a gift to their servants as a gesture of appreciation.
Today, the tradition has expanded to show appreciation to anyone who provides you a service. This can include the mailman, bellhop, garbage collector, and your pastor. You can also remember those people with a small, simple present in lieu of money.
Help the Less Fortunate
Another popular tradition on Boxing Day is to give to those who are less fortunate than you are. You can donate money to a local food bank, give it to a family from your church, or make a donation to a local charity.
Boxing Day is similar to Black Friday in the United States. It is a day filled with great bargains and deals for shoppers. Many take the opportunity to hit the stores to take advantage of the Boxing Day specials and sales.
Walmart is one name that appears on everyone’s mind during the festive season. Sometimes you have to go out and buy one last thing to mark the occasion and make your holiday complete. However, if you don’t realize you’ve missed something until Christmas day itself, you may run into a little problem. Many stores including Walmart close their doors for the holiday. The stores open on Boxing Day, the day after Christmas, December 26th, resumes regular hours.
Shoppers must be prepared to make purchases and enjoy the deals to get inexpensive stuff and stock it. Remember that even stores use this opportunity to empty the stocks and hence be ready to have an emergency fund in place.
So start listing out things that are useful for you and worth the shopping. Stop buying something that will remain idle in the house (No gadgets or electronic goods even though the offers are tempting).
Out With Friends
On Boxing Day, many people make it a tradition to hang out with friends and visit the local pubs in the area. However, COVID -19 will not allow you to do that.
Maybe you can invite your friends and relatives to enjoy drinking and socializing at your home or theirs, now that local establishments are at the risk of reopening due to the pandemic.
Stay at Home
In the recent past, this has been the norm but otherwise many people simply prefer to stay at home on Boxing Day. People enjoy their presents from Christmas and many set up and enjoy a buffet filled with holiday leftovers such as:
- Leftover turkey
- Glazed ham
- Cold sliced beef
- Variety of cold salads
- Cheese and crackers
- Share and Create Memories
How long do the Boxing Day sales last?
Boxing Day is a part of the continuous sales that happen till the dawn of the New Year. The sales actually last much longer than just a day. Last year we noticed some retailers kick off their Boxing Day sales much before about a week before Christmas, and with the current retail climate and uncertainty that COVID-19 has brought us; we wouldn’t be surprised if things start even earlier in 2020.
So you have a lot of holidays to make up for the loss of missing out anytime between now and the beginning of January 2021, you stand a good chance of making a great saving and, don’t forget the excellent last-minute Christmas deals to maximize your shopping.
Stock up materials that matter the most and make this Boxing Day a valuable one, don’t forget to take this opportunity to help the needy and get together with those you love.
Wishing you a happy Boxing Day before we bid goodbye to this year!
By Karthick V.