There really is no way to avoid the fact that Christmas is an expensive time of year! If you’re not careful you can spend a small fortune on presents, clothes, parties and food.
However, we’ve come up with a few simple tips to help you cut back on your spending – without being a Scrooge – and make sure that you don’t get snowed under this Christmas!
Buying for friends and colleagues is a nice thing to do for Christmas, but all the ‘little somethings’ can add up. Try doing a group ‘Secret Santa’ for office colleagues or friends. This way you can limit yourself to buying just one present, which although more expensive, will cut the overall costs.
Supermarkets make a fortune over Christmas by stocking attractively packaged food that people just can’t walk past. When you go shopping, write a list of all the items you need and don’t stray from the list or add any extras to your trolley. You’ll be amazed by how much you pick up that isn’t needed.
If you are stuck for gift ideas, offering your time will always be appreciated. If you have friends or family with young children offer an evening, or two, of babysitting duties in the New Year. An evening out is invaluable to some people, so why not add a restaurant voucher to really make their Christmas.
If you have a favourite shop to spend in, then getting a loyalty card – or even a credit card – could help you save up points to spend around the Christmas period. These points could go a long way towards paying for your Christmas meal.
Look out for opportunities to donate some of your Christmas spending to charity. Many of the UK’s largest charities now have online gift shops, selling a full range of items from hampers to homeware – helping you to make your budget stretch even further.
So although there isn’t a way to avoid all Christmas costs, these few tips will definitely help you to stay on top of your finances, and hopefully start the New Year with your finances still intact.