Gift Guides, Events and Holiday Cheer

Shoppers Jam Bay Area Stores to Grab Last-Minute Holiday Gifts

Shoppers are jamming into Bay Area stories this last weekend before Christmas to grab holiday gifts.

Monday, Dec 23, 2013  |  Updated 12:15 AM PDT
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It is the last weekend to grab holiday gifts, and last-minute shoppers are jamming Bay Area stores. The result was plenty of traffic congestion on freeway off-ramps leading up to the malls from the East Bay all the way down to San Jose. NBC Bay Area's Kimberly Tere reports from Valley Fair Mall in Santa Clara.

It is the last weekend to grab holiday gifts, and last-minute shoppers are jamming Bay Area stores. The result was plenty of traffic congestion on freeway off-ramps leading up to the malls from the East Bay all the way down to San Jose. NBC Bay Area's Kimberly Tere reports from Valley Fair Mall in Santa Clara.

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It is the last weekend to grab holiday gifts, and last-minute shoppers are jamming Bay Area stores.

The result was plenty of traffic congestion on freeway off-ramps leading up to the malls from the East Bay all the way down to San Jose.

Parking lots across the Bay Area are packed, including Valley Fair Mall in Santa Clara, an indication of just how crowded it is inside.

And some stores, such as Kohl's, are ending the holiday shopping season the same way they began it — with round-the-clock, marathon shopping hours.

The holiday rush happens the same time every year, and there are those who procrastinate.

"Very chaotic, busy," Valley Fair shopper Cynthia Joseph said. "Everybody is walking around with a purpose."

Last minute shoppers are flooding stores and malls in search of Christmas deals.

Shopper Nerses Sanassial said she always waits until the last minute to snag those holiday gifts because "life's busy, squeezing it in."

Scott Tilney of San Jose said he feels the best deals are right now--instead of after Thanksgiving (or on Thanksgiving).

"Actually yea, it seems like there are better deals right now," he said.

Some shoppers disagree.

"I haven’t seen any better deals, but it’s just my nature to wait," shopper Chrissy Monroy said.

According to the National Retail Federation, 10 percent of Americans will wait until Christmas Eve to finish their shopping.

That applies for those who started shopping even before Black Friday, like Toni Bell of San Jose.

"I was done like in October but then I forgot a few people on the list," she said. "And now, I am back out here and that’s not a good thing 'cause now i am spending more money."

And it seems she is not the only one. Many shoppers, despite national trends, said they are spending more this year this Christmas.

"It seems like every year, it's [holiday spending] going up," Bell said. "I spoil people more."

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