Shopping Small May Help Consumers Avoid Shortages, Delivery Delays

Shop owners in Dallas' Preston & Royal area are hopeful for a busy holiday season

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Holiday spending for 2021 is expected to shatter previous records, following a year of people being cooped up and trying to get out early to avoid supply shortages.

Shopping small may help customers avoid problems created by shortages and lengthy delivery times this holiday season.

It’s welcome news for the Toy Maven and other locally-owned shops in Dallas still recovering from the 2019 tornado and the pandemic slump.

Inside the Toy Maven, holiday energy fills the store that is packed with shoppers buying more and buying earlier than last year.

“You can tell people are out early this year, the holidays started days ago,” shopper Trace Ordiway said.

For Toy Maven owner Candace Williams, the last two years have been a rollercoaster.

Shops in the Preston & Royal area were destroyed by a tornado in October 2019. As they worked to recover, the pandemic hit and toy companies are facing supply shortage issues.

However, Williams said her manufacturers notified her early about issues and she started to prepare for the holiday season last January and February.

Most of her store shelves are packed with toys.

“There are a few hard-to-find items – some of them Pokémon-related – but for the most part we’re seeing really good fulfillment,” Williams said.

She advised toy shoppers not to get caught up in the "hot item" of the year amid the shortages.

“Parents need to take a moment and really ponder what is best for their child and what their child’s interests are,” Williams said.

But she stressed if you do find something on your list, to buy it the moment you see it because it will likely be gone soon.

Grandmother Cindy Munn followed that advice and finished her toy shopping before Thanksgiving.

Last year she didn’t do any in-store holiday shopping due to the pandemic.

“[This year] I’m done with it,” Munn said. “I’m completely finished and it feels wonderful!”

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