Staff Jamie-Lee Funnell, Jane Nauschutz and store manager Tara Ross wrapping gifts at Open House.
Staff Jamie-Lee Funnell, Jane Nauschutz and store manager Tara Ross wrapping gifts at Open House. Alistair Brightman

Last chance to enter Christmas Shop Local contest

DESPITE the buzz of the silly season, two in three shoppers weren't feeling the Christmas cheer while they shopped for gifts this year.

More than a third of shoppers reported feeling angry, stressed or overwhelmed.

The biggest beefs were the crowds, heavy bags and navigating packed shopping centres in a shopping centre survey of 1000 Australian men and woman.

Fraser Coast businesses are calling on shoppers to think twice before purchasing this year's Christmas gifts from afar or online.

The Fraser Coast is full of small businesses going to extra effort to win over local shoppers.

Each was doing their best to promote the shop local culture in the lead up to December 25, with tactics such as free gift wrapping, assistance to vehicles and inspiration for gift ideas.

Open House Hervey Bay store manager Tara Ross said after operating in Hervey Bay for 29 years they knew to anticipate shopping crowds from December 1 each year.

"You can go to big department stores or shopping centres but we offer a more personal experience," she said.

"Keeping your Christmas dollars in town allows local businesses to pay forward the courtesy."

Dollars spent in Fraser Coast businesses help fund local jobs and feed the local economy.

Ms Ross said she knew how frustrating shopping in crowds could be and said small shops could offer a more tranquil alternative to the booming shopping centres.

The Fraser Coast Chronicle has done its part to promote local businesses with this year's Christmas Shop Local competition which closes today.

Shop at participating businesses to score an entry to win one of five $1000 prizes.

Entries close at 10am on Thursday, December 18.