How holiday shopping has been affected by the pandemic

 Renee Josse de Lisle/The Cougar

Renee Josse de Lisle/The Cougar

For some students, Christmas looks a little different this year due to the pandemic limiting travel and making shopping for the holidays more of a task.

E-commerce in the United States alone has increased 18 percent this year as a result of the coronavirus, according to CNN. Online shopping has been a way for consumers to find their holiday gifts without coming into contact with others at stores.

For some families and friend groups, it has just been easier all around to not buy everyone a present, but to participate in gift exchange games as an alternative.

“My family is doing Secret Santa and White Elephant to save money, but still have fun,” said journalism senior Ivan Duran Puente.

Secret Santa is a game where in a group, one person is responsible for getting a gift for one other person in the group based on what name they drew, and the gift is supposed to be a secret until the person who receives it guesses who gave it to them.

White Elephant is a game where everyone buys one gift that goes in the middle of the group and one at a time, people get to select a gift and trade around to try and get the one they want.

While massive consumer corporations such as Amazon are benefiting from the online shopping during the pandemic, there are also students choosing to shop online from small businesses for the holidays.

Black Friday even showed how small businesses who converted more towards e-commerce this year during the pandemic saw record breaking sales as opposed to years before.

“Because of the pandemic, I wanted to make extra effort to shop small businesses this year,” said supply chain management sophomore Divya Louis. “I did most of my holiday shopping online and from small businesses I found through Instagram and Etsy.”

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