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Five Reasons to Shop Local This Holiday Season🎄

The Holidays are officially in full swing.✨As we move into December, the season of giving is upon us. Whether we give physical presents to our family and friends or the gift of presence itself, we most often gather together this time of year to share delicious, home-cooked meals, festive traditions, gift-giving, and the spirit of holiday magic with the ones we love. It’s a time for joy, peace, compassion, generosity, good tidings, and, did I already mention, food? Holiday meals are the best, though!

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Gift-giving might be an enjoyable, exciting experience for you, and it might not. Sometimes, in the quest to find the perfect gift for that special someone, we add more stress and financial worry to an already full plate (no, not with food🤣), the juggling plate of life. Perhaps that special someone is challenging to shop for, or they say they don’t need anything (which may be true). Nonetheless, the hunt to find just the right gift is on.

Perhaps you’re one of those holiday gift shoppers who hits the big markdowns at the end of the year (smart cookie), gathers gifts throughout the year, completes all gift wrapping in early December, and then relaxes while the rest of scramble to find gifts in time like we had no idea Christmas was coming (it is the same day every year, after all). Here is your friendly holiday reminder to take a deep breath and remember less is often more. The greatest gifts we can give one another are not found under the tree but come from and live in the heart.

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Regardless of your beliefs, shopping style, number of people on your list, etc., the holiday season is a special time to show the ones we love how important they are to us. Often, this happens through gift-giving. So, as you gear up to create and conquer your holiday shopping list (make sure and check it twice, ok!?😉), here are five reasons to shop local this holiday season:

Kauaʻi shopping online🎁Shopping locally supports your local economy and encourages a vibrant flow of money right where you live. Dr. Sue Lynn Sasser, professor of economics at the University of Oklahoma, points out that “When profits stay local, it increases the community’s wealth, tax revenue and standard of living.” (1)

Money spent in your local economy stays in your local economy, the place you call home. According to Choose Dupage, an Economic Development Alliance, “When it comes to the local economy, independent retailers return more than 3X as much money per dollar of sales than chain competitors,” and “Locally owned independent restaurants return 2X as much to the local economy compared to chain restaurants.” (2) Rather than spend your money profiting the already-rich mega stores, why not directly support the community in which you live? Shopping locally allows you to vote with your money for what and who is important to you.

🎁Local businesses create local jobs and support other local businesses. Often, local boutique shops support other local artists and stock their products, including jewelry, clothing, art, soaps, etc., and farm-to-table restaurants featuring local meats and produce support local farmers and fishermen. It’s a win-win for everyone.

🎁Local Hawaiʻi shops offer unique, one-of-a-kind products and unparalleled service. Successful local businesses are often run directly by the owner who has put their heart and soul into their company and strives at all costs to build and sustain their entrepreneurial dream. Mom & Pop shops have hard-to-find gifts you will not find on Amazon and are knowledgeable about the products they sell.

🎁Supporting local Hawaiʻi businesses puts money in the pockets of the people who comprise your community: your neighbors, friends, family, etc. It’s a positive domino effect; your money pays for the local product and the overhead cost of running the business, which then supports other local businesses and people (landlord, employees, local print shop, etc.). Shopping for gifts close to home allows local businesses to stay open through the good times and survive the rough patches, too. One good deed leads to another.

🎁Shopping locally generates sales tax revenue that is returned to and directly impacts your community. According to Rubicon, a digital software platform, “In addition to generating more tax revenue per sales dollar, taxes paid by small, local businesses are widely used to support schools, parks, roads, and other local programs that benefit your friends, family, and community.” (3)

There are many more impressive reasons to shop locally this holiday season and beyond. As you work through your holiday list this year, tap into the beauty and potency of giving locally sourced gifts that feel good to give because they are part of something bigger, of the shift from mainstream to local, from out there to right here. Remember, it’s not about the cost or number of gifts, but the love behind it.❤️

Wishing you and yours a safe, joyful, and love-filled holiday season full of all the things and people you hold near and dear.✨

(1): Metro Family Magazine. “15 Reasons to Shop Locally.” Nov. 2023.

(2): Tri-County News. “How communities benefit when consumers buy local.” Nov. 2023.

(3): Rubicon. “7 Rewarding Reasons to Shop Local.” Feb. 2023.

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