With another Thanksgiving holiday wrapped up, are you feeling overwhelmed with the thought of fulfilling your loved ones’ holiday wish lists? Hosting parties, holiday travel, gift buying, seasonal baking, and decorating, can understandable contribute to depleting saving accounts and increased credit card balances during the Christmas season.
Having fun and saving money rarely go together- the holidays being an obvious example. The added expenses that accompany the holiday season can make it all too easy to begin 2017 in debt. These budget-friendly tips can help you avoid the added stress of finances this Christmas, and help welcome the New Year in the cheapest, easiest, and most enjoyable fashion yet.
Budget-Friendly Shopping Tips
- Shop Online- take advantage of holiday sales while avoiding the crowded stores. If you have some extra time up your sleeve, gift buying is often the same price or cheaper online, especially when using discount codes and FREE Shipping offers. Not to mention, money is saved online when avoiding long checkout lines where last minute temptations can create more spending.
- Maximize Coupons & Discount Codes- sign up for company email lists to receive special offers. Mailboxes and emails are flooded with deals this time of year- don’t miss out!
- Shop at Discount Stores- younger children don’t realize if puzzles, toys, clothes, and books are second-hand. Buying second hand can save money while putting smiles on their faces.
- Buy Holiday Baking Ingredients in Bulk- pick 2 or 3 of your favorite treat recipes to bring to holiday parties you will be attending or hosting. Save money when buying the ingredients in bulk at a local wholesale store.
- Be Social Media Savvy- follow your favorite stores on Twitter and like them on Facebook to keep up with special savings offers. Checkout Pinterest for great DIY project ideas.
- Stick to a Budget- decided on a per-person amount you will spend and don’t veer away. Don’t buy anything additional just because it’s cheap. A good way to control your holiday spending is to buy a gift card for yourself and shop with that while leaving the credit cards at home.
- Plan in Advance- It may be too late for 2016, but you can start planning for next holiday season.
- Spread your spending out by purchasing a few gifts each month throughout the year to avoid last minute buying under pressure which can lead to increased spending.
- Take advantage of buying holiday décor at a discounted priced during end-of-season sales.
Budget-Friendly Traveling Tips:
- Plan in Advance- If you tend to travel to the same destination year after year, book your holiday travel far in advance to avoid last minute booking increases.
- Measure and Weigh Your Bags- Cheap airlines can be known for making their money by charging outrageous fees for even one extra pound of baggage. Know exactly how much your baggage weighs before going to the airport.
- Pack Your Own Travel Snacks- Whether on the road, on a bus, or waiting at the airport, have your own drinks and snacks on hand to avoid spending extra money on food while traveling.