Christmas On A Budget Tips & Tricks

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It’s coming around quicker than we realise and for a lot of us we have just one more payday until the big day! I don’t know if there is a lot more emphasis this year on the fact that Christmas presents don’t have to break the bank or I’m just noticing it more but it’s true! It might be hard to accept for some or you might be thinking it’s easier said than done but with a little planning and a strong resolve, you can give everyone on your list a wonderful gift without having to go into serious credit card debt. Here’s how:

Christmas Money Saving Tips

Make a Budget

If you haven’t already now is the time to make a list of everyone you plan to give gifts to this year with an estimate of what you want to spend. Now add one or two generic wildcard gifts. These are gifts for people you forgot to include, or for people who unexpectedly gave you a gift and you feel you have to reciprocate! We don’t have this so much anymore but with bigger families it does happen!

Keeping a gift card to Starbucks, Cinema or even something homemade like Christmas cookies or crafts work well to keep to aside for these kinds of gifts.

Research Online in Advance

Try to get an idea of what you want to buy everyone on your list before you actually shop. If you need to compare prices or features, do it online in advance.

Block Out Time to Shop

The easiest way to stick to your Christmas gift budget is to block out one or two specific times to shop, and finish it all during those times. Choose a day or two to head in to the city centre or give yourself 1 hour to browse the internet. Don’t forget though browsing leads to overbuying for many so if you do plan to shop online, make that one of your designated shopping sessions and check your list before you start!

Stick to the Fewest Number of Stores Possible

Fewer stores means fewer opportunities to stray from your list. If you’re up for a challenge, try to finish your whole list in one store but don’t forget to do some price comparison too before you go so you have an idea of what’s good and what’s not!

Don’t Get Sucked in by a Sale

Sure, that may looks like a great price for a foot massager. But does it fit your budget and more importantly does anyone on your list want a foot massager or just you? It’s really easy to get sucked in by a sale but as I’ve already touched on if you buy from a list and have a route idea of prices then you should be fine!

Don’t Buy Anything for Yourself

Perhaps the biggest hidden expense during Christmas shopping is to buy things for yourself while buying gifts for others. Just like that foot massager.. you’ve always wanted one, it’s too late to put on your list now and it’s a bargain right? Wrong!

Maybe it’s genuinely something you need anyway. Maybe it’s something you want. Or maybe it’s just a great price. Whatever the reason, ignore it. Your bank account will be much fatter in January if you don’t give in to temptation.. you might even be able to pick it up in the sale AFTER Christmas for you using some Christmas money perhaps!

Write Down What You Spend

The very act of writing it down can curb overspending. It also helps you make sure you stick to your budget.

When you buy something make a list of not only what you spend but what it is that you actually buy too! How many times do you get to Christmas and realise you’ve overbought or you’ve ‘lost’ a present that you were sure you’d bought but is no longer where you thought you left it!

Shop Early

Shopping under pressure causes overspending. Plan to shop early and you’ll not only save money, you’ll feel less frenzied as the festive period approaches AND you’ll find you buy things that have a meaning instead of buying something just because it’s there!

Avoid Using Credit Cards

When you know the money is coming right out of your bank account, you are likely to spend far less than when you know you’re buying on credit. DOn’t be tempted to put ANYTHING on a credit card. If you can’t afford it don’t buy it. Any loved one who would much prefer a present over you getting yourself into debt is NOT worth a gift!

Shop on eBay

Ebay have some really great deals, and many times, items are brand new too! Be sure to double check the date of expected delivery though and make sure it it’s actually going to arrive on time!

I hope these tips have given you food for thought this christmas if you are on a budget or you want to not overspend. It’s so easy to do and you certainly won’t be alone but planning is key. Do that and you be fine!

Feel free to PIN to read again later!

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About The Money Saving Mum

About The Money Saving Mum

I've always been financially savvy but when the kids came along I needed to up my game! Our finances and priorities changed overnight and it felt like I was spending money as if it was going out of fashion! I needed to start earning extra money just to make ends meet and continuously make sure we got the most out of every single penny we had! Sound familiar? Keep reading... I'm sharing my story to help people like you!

Kirsty

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