It’s Small Business Saturday tomorrow – a day that celebrates the best our independent shops and firms have to offer.
And with the day being promoted by American Express, those with a card can benefit.
Stock up on Christmas presents from local independent shops this weekend and you’ll get £5 off your Amex bill for each one you support.
SHOP SMALL: Support your local independent businesses this weekend
Its deal means that if you spend at least £10 on an Amex credit card at a small business taking part between this coming Saturday and Sunday 17 December, you’ll have £5 credited to your account for each retailer you buy something from.
To take advantage you’ll need to register your card, which you can do right up until the last day of the promotion.
If you have an Amex card, you can register here but if you have an Amex card issued by another provider, such as Lloyds Bank or MBNA, click here.
Last year, some £717million was spent on Small Business Saturday – a 15 per cent increase on the year before.
You can find a participating store near you here by entering your postcode. You can also search by type of business, such as shopping or eating and drinking.
The city of Bath has 100 small businesses participating in the event.
Shopping around: there are 100 small businesses participating in Bath alone
GOK WAN: ‘WHY I SHOP SMALL’
The fashion expert and TV presenter likes to Shop Small in Bristol
‘I love spending time in Bristol and have been lucky enough to visit the city for both work and pleasure. The area around Cabot Circus has loads of gorgeous independent boutiques and coffee shops, but when I visit I make sure not to miss Clifton Village and Park Street either – both are brilliant shopping destinations whether I’m doing a spot of Christmas shopping or looking for something for myself.
Gok Wan, TV Presenter and Shop Small ambassador
What’s more, more than 100 local authorities are offering free parking to shoppers as a reward for supporting their local high streets.
Motorists in Suffolk, Swansea, County Durham, Ceredigion, Powys and Portsmouth just some of those who can enjoy free parking while shopping local this year.
Here’s the full list of the councils offering free parking to support Small Business Saturday – and some of them are waiving their charges on selected dates throughout December. Visit their websites for the full details.
|Babergh District Council||Portsmouth City Council|
|Bassetlaw District Council||Rochford District Council|
|Blaby District Council||Rutland County Council|
|Cherwell District Council||Suffolk Coastal District Council|
|Cheshire West and Chester Council||Tewkesbury Borough Council|
|Dover District Council||West Lancashire Borough Council|
|Durham County Council||Wigan Metropolitan Borough Council|
|Hart District Council||Wycombe District Council|
|London Borough of Haringey||Wyre Council|
|London Borough of Sutton||Moray Council|
|Melton Borough Council||Ceredigion County Council|
|New Forest District Council||Gwynedd County Council|
|North East Lincolnshire Council||Swansea City and Borough Council|
Don’t have Amex? Here’s some top credit card options
If you don’t have an Amex card, there are other credit card perks you should bear in mind when doing your Christmas shopping.
Perhaps the most important is Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act, which protects all of your purchases of £100 or over (up to a whopping £30k) should anything go wrong.
Your credit card is jointly liable along with the retailer so if an item is faulty, or there is some other problem with it, and the retailer fails to put things right, your credit card provider has to give you your money back.
You should also check out any rewards offered by your credit card provider for spending on the card.
For instance, if you have a supermarket credit card, you’ll rack up points wherever you shop – in your local independent shops or in a department store – and you can redeem them in the supermarket to cut the cost of your groceries.
For example, the Sainsbury’s Bank Nectar Purchase credit card – which currently comes top of the bets buy tables for its 31-month 0 per cent interest deal on purchases – comes with Nectar reward points when you swipe your card. You get two Nectar points for every £1 you spend on Sainsbury’s shopping and fuel and one point per £5 spent elsewhere. You can exchange 500 points for £2.50 to spend in store. The standard interest rate is 18.9 per cent.
For a full run through of This is Money’s pick of the top credit cards for using this Christmas, click here.
THIS IS MONEY’S FIVE OF THE BEST CREDIT CARDS