Christmas may well be one of the most wonderful times of the year, but it’s also a very expensive time for many families. Not only do you have decorations, food, and other expensive celebrations to think about, but you also have the presents to buy for your loved ones too. If you’re worrying that you’re not going to have enough cash this Christmas, then it could be time to start looking for ways to cut the costs and get your budget working for you.
The good news is that you can still have a jolly festive season without spending everything you’ve earned for the last 11 months. Here are some money-saving tips that are sure to help.
1. Spread the Cost
If you’ve got a particularly expensive gift to buy this year, or you’re taking the whole family on a trip somewhere special, then you have even more money worries to think about than most people. Rather than trying to scrape together enough money to pay for flights to your parent’s house halfway across the world this winter, take out a cash loan and spread the cost over the year ahead.
It can often be a lot less daunting to cut the expense of Christmas down into a few monthly payments rather than having to pay for everything at once. You can even use your Christmas bonus to pay off a chunk of what you owe.
2. Make Gift Buying a Challenge
When you’re the kind of person that likes to go over-the-top with gift-giving, it can be difficult to convince yourself to slow down when Christmas comes around. The good news is that you can reduce your risk of overspending and have a little fun at the same time. Ask your friends and family members to join you in the challenge of only spending a specific amount on each other this year.
Maybe you’ll see how much you can give each other for just $30. Or perhaps you’ll look for the biggest gift for the lowest price. This will even give you an opportunity to put your frugal shopping skills to the test.
3. Make the Presents instead
You could even think about getting extra creative with your gift-giving strategy this year, and make the presents that you want to give out instead. This is an excellent way to give your loved ones something unique and interesting. You can find countless videos and tutorials online that teach you how to do everything from making your own truffles and candies, to making candles for the people you care about.
Take a look at the kind of guides that you can find online and ask yourself what kind of gifts are likely to appeal most to your friends. You can even personalize what you make to suit each person – so it’s extra special.
4. Ask for Help
If you’re hosting the Christmas dinner this year, make sure that you’re not the only person paying for all the food. If you’re giving your friends and family your hospitality, then the least that they can do is bring one ingredient for the meal. Ask everyone who is coming to your home to contribute something to the Christmas dinner. One person can bring the veggies, while someone else brings dessert, and someone brings their home-made cookies. The more people you have coming to your home, the more food you’ll end up with.
Additionally, having someone bring their own favorite food to Christmas dinner means that if all else fails, everyone at your table will have something that they know they like eating to dig into. You won’t have any unhappy faces for Christmas.
5. Give Yourself a Break
Finally, remember that there’s always a chance that you’re going to go over your budget at Christmas – no matter how well prepared you think that you are. If that happens, don’t go into panic mode. Sit down with your partner or anyone that you live with in your household and work out how you’re going to get yourself back on track. You might be able to cut down on bills going forward or sell some of the items that you got at Christmas to make up some of the extra money that you’ve lost.
The festive season is a hectic time for everyone, and it’s something that you need to prepare for in advance as much as possible. Take what you learn this year and apply it to next year’s celebrations.