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9 Easy Tips to Save for Christmas
There are 9 easy tips to save money for Christmas without going into debt. Many people go into debt every year during the Christmas holiday. According to CNBC, Americans racked up an average of $1,054 of debt during the 2017 Christmas holiday, about 5 percent more than in 2016.
According to Marketwatch, bouncing back from those purchases won’t come quickly. Only half of those surveyed expected to repay the debt within 3 months — others (29%) said they need more than five months to pay it off, often leading to interest on the credit card debt and growing balances. In fact, 10% of people who took on holiday debt said they would only be able make minimum payments on credit cards.
Do you fall into this category?
During the holiday season, the lights and music, when you walk into the store, gets you excited and creates a temptation to shop till you drop. If you have children, nieces and nephews, the temptation meter rises very fast because you don’t want to feel like a failure for not giving them what they want.
There is good news.
You can set and keep to a budget for your Christmas shopping.
Here are 8 easy tips for you to do your Christmas shopping on a budget.
1. Make a list
Start out with your first list. You are free to add and remove names from the list. If you have a huge family, let’s say your brother has a wife and 4 children, it gets pretty expensive buying for several families of 6. Consider getting a family gift, instead of 6 individual gifts. Doing this will cut down on the names on your list.
2. Set a budget
You should set a budget. Even if you have 5 or 10 people to buy for, you still set a budget and stick with it. You will find resourceful ways to make the money go a long way. Many people are emotional spenders, and emotional spending leads to overspending. You should never feel guilty about how much you spend especially if you don’t have the money.
Determine how much you plan to spend for Christmas and divide that by the number of people on your list.
For example, if you plan to spend $500, and there are 10 people on your list, you can decide how much you will spend for each person on your list.
You will have to get over the idea that the amount you spend is what matters; it does not. It is the thought that goes into the gift giving that matters.
3. Pay Cash
It will be best to pay with cash but there are advantages to shopping online. For example, sign up for Ebates, shop online and receive cash backs for purchases. It’s that easy. You will be surprised how fast the money adds up. Whatever method you choose, discipline yourself and not overspend.
Read more: What is Ebates? How Does It Work?
4. Shop alone
Shopping alone will help you stick to your list and your budget. Don’t take your kids with you shopping. They will play on your emotions and make you feel guilty; kids are designed that way. Kids will make you spend money that you didn’t plan to spend. Don’t take anyone that does not have the same spending habits like you.
5. Do your research
There are so many stores to buy from online and brick and mortar stores. Compare prices, for example, there are many stores that have a price match policy, take advantage of the policy. This can save you a tone of money over time. You can combine a sale and a coupon and get a good deal but that is not always true. That is why it is important to do your research.
6. Prioritizing. What is important?
There are many people who feel that Christmas is the time to buy anything the kids want.
You must not feel obligated to buy your kids everything they want.
Teach them to be content with whatever they get and teach them to give.
I give my kids
- A book
- One thing they need
- One thing they want (ONLY if it is reasonable)
7. Combine gifts
You can cut down on your list by combining gifts. Let’s say your brother has a wife and 4 children, it gets pretty expensive buying 6 individual family members. You could buy video games or board games for the family. Or you may decide to purchase a Groupon to an arcade or a show for the family. This beat buying for individuals because buying separate gifts adds up very fast.
8. Sell old items
Go through old items to see what you are no longer using. Sell at a yard sale or on eBay. You will get extra money to spend on gifts. This is way better than going into debt.
9. Give to others
You make think that you do not have much, but there are many people that have less.
You can use this period to give to those in need by donating items or volunteer with organizations that provide services to the less fortunate. Take your children with you, this is an opportunity to teach them to be grateful for whatever they have.
The Christmas period can become stressful if you allow it to be. You can have an awesome holiday season by planning and living within your means. Know your budget, how much you plan to spend for each person, pay with cash, and stick to your budget. If you stick to the 9 easy tips to save for Christmas, you will have a less stressful Christmas.
Don’t start out the new year with extra debt and become part of the statistics.
Please share way you use to save for Christmas.
Hi, I’m Ngozi, I work full time during the day blog at night and in my free time. Join me as I write about saving money, side hustle, getting out of debt, and ways to enjoy the simple things in life.