3 min read
When we think of Christmas our first thought is always ‘Yay! Christmas!’
Followed by our second thought ‘How am I gonna pay for it?’
Every year we need to weigh up what we can afford to spend while still delivering a memorable family Christmas therefore we’ve compiled a list of money saving tips that can help you stay on budget without giving up all your favourite trimmings.
Christmas lists aren’t just for kids. Sit down well before the big day and make a list of everything you need to buy. Go through all your friends and relatives and see if there are any outstanding presents. Have a think of what you will be eating for the days around Christmas and write down all the ingredients.
Then go back and pencil in the approximate costs of each item and see how this tallies up with what you can afford to spend. If you are waaayyyy off budget, then you need to go back and start scratching non-essentials off the list until you are spending an amount you are comfortable with.
Now you have the list, stick to it! This is what you can afford to buy, so buy these items and nothing more to make sure you only spend what you can afford this Christmas.
We all have a few mates with whom we go through the annual exchange of nail polish sets and Lynx gift boxes. The reality is, you could both probably do with hanging onto the cash you are wasting on token gifts.
Bring up the subject well ahead of Christmas and make a pact that you won’t be doing pointless presents this year and giving each other the best gift of all – one less thing to worry about!
Supermarkets are already starting their special offers. Make a list of everything you need and take it with you whenever you go shopping. Pudding on special offer? I’ll be having that. Half price ham? I’m sure I can find some room in the freezer. If it’s going cheap, think "that's going straight in my basket'" and cross it off your list.
The trick here is to stick to the list and only put things INTO the Christmas cupboard! If you start taking stuff out then then you’re going to end up buying things twice.
Anyone who has dabbled in arts and crafts will know it can be a sure-fire way to fritter away both your time and money. But if you do a bit of research and find some low cost / low effort craft tricks, that could save you money and make your Christmas unique.
Our favourite is this Reindeer wrapping hack! Simply wrap all your pressies in standard brown paper like you would have put on your schoolbooks, stick a bright red nose in the middle of the present, and draw on some eyes and antlers for a delightful looking Christmas gift!
Online shopping is becoming an increasingly popular way to Christmas shop, but the cost of shipping can quickly mount up. Thankfully, there are a few little tricks to help combat this.
If you are signing up to newsletters for your favourite shops and brands, pretend your birthday is in early December.
They will most likely send you ‘birthday’ discount codes and special offers that you can use for your Christmas Shopping.
Amazon also offers a free 30-day trial for their Prime service. Sign up in the run-up to Christmas and get free delivery on your Christmas shopping. Set a reminder on your phone to cancel before the 30 days are up and it costs you nothing! And that’s not all…
If you plan on having some pyjama days and watching loads of TV over the Christmas holidays, then signing up for a free trial for a TV subscription will get you access to loads of free TV shows and movies without paying a penny!
Amazon Prime and Netflix both offer 30-day trials for their streaming services and they are jam-packed with hours of entertainment to see you through the festive period. The golden rule is to make sure you know when the free trial ends and cancel before the subscription costs kick in.
Christmas is one of our favourite times of year, but a bit of forward planning and sticking to a set budget will mean you aren’t still paying for it well into the new year.
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