Christmas often involves increased spending on gifts, decorations, travel and food. This can cause financial strain which often leads to stress as people try to manage their budgets and cover the additional expenses associated with the season.
If you don’t want to be worried about overspending during the holiday season, here are some tips to help you save money so you can relax and enjoy your family and friends:
Make a Budget
Even if you have a regular monthly budget, you might need to make a special one for your Christmas spending. In it, be sure to include gifts, decorations, and food. Stick to your budget to avoid overspending.
Make a Gift List
Gift giving is a big part of the festive season, and sometimes it’s easy to go overboard. Make a list of people you want to buy gifts for and set a spending limit for each person.
Handmade gifts feel more personal, are less expensive than store-bought items and they can be fun to make. Consider creating a piece of art, knitting, crafting, writing a poem, baking or any other skill that you might have.
We’ve all received gifts that were well intentioned but not quite to our taste. Why not pass them on. Make a drawer of gifts for regifting. Just keep a list of who they came from to avoid giving them back to the same person.
If you have a large family or group of friends, suggest a Secret Santa or gift exchange. This way, each person only has one gift to buy, making it more affordable for everyone.
Begin your shopping early to take advantage of sales and bargains throughout the year. This will help you avoid last-minute, impulse purchases and will help spread out the financial strain of Christmas.
Create your own unique decorations instead of expensive, store-bought ones. You can find numerous holiday DIY decoration ideas online that are both festive and budget friendly.
Have a Potluck
If you’re hosting a holiday gathering, ask guests to bring a dish to share. This not only reduces your expenses and time in the kitchen but also adds variety to the menu.
Gift Your Time
Instead of a physical gift, give someone a voucher. For example, offer one day out with you, 2 hours of help with a certain task, handyman for the day… Use your imagination and come of with something meaningful.
These tips should help you save money, stay out of debt and enjoy the festive season.
Remember that Genistar can help you with a full financial plan. We’ll help you understand how money works so you can make better financial decisions.