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Last-minute Christmas shoppers raid malls

5:48 PM, Dec 24, 2012   |    comments
Last-minute shoppers at St. Johns Town Center
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The average shopper completed about 57 percent of their holiday shopping as of two weeks ago. That's according to the National Retail Federation, but as Christmas gets closer, so does the deadline for getting in those last-minute gifts.

"We're just browsing around looking for our last minute stuff, for us. We actually did all of our shopping for our kid," said John Cooper, a shopper at St. Johns Town Center.

Now that the kids have their gifts under the tree, Cooper and his wife are focusing on their own presents.

"She bought me these shoes and now I'm looking to buy her some shoes or either a jogging suit, but she thinks I'm stuck in the 80s," said Cooper. "I want to buy a sweat suit for her and myself, I want us to dress alike she don't want to do that, she's like 'that's the 80s.'"

Shoppers have made their list and now they're checking it twice.

"We've got soaps, we've got creams, candles, coats, shirts," said shopper Trel Lloyd.

Many of the shoppers at the Town Center were actually from out of town, here to visit their family for the holidays and do a little last-minute gift hunting.

"I noticed my Dad really liked my jacket today, so we're looking for something for him. Just little things that you pick up when, we haven't seen our family in three years, so you pick up little things that they like," says Lloyd.

And in some cases, shoppers got great bargains for waiting.

"We actually found like probably almost 80 percent off at some of the stores that you would have spent almost 100, we spent like 50," says Lauren Shriver, an out of town shopper.

The National Retail Federation predicts holiday sales will increase by 4 percent compared with last year -- bringing in a whopping $586 billion -- and a rush for retail.

We want to hear about your shopping experience. Did you wait until the last minute to get your Christmas gifts? Tell us on our First Coast News Facebook page.

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