10 Creative Ways To Save Money During Christmas Without Losing The Sparkle
Christmas is a wonderful time of the year – perhaps the most wonderful of them all. It’s a time for giving and sharing; a time for compassion, kindness, love, laughter and romance.
But Christmas can also be a huge drain on our finances. There are gifts to buy, trees to decorate, and places to go. Before you know it, you’ve spent a small fortune.
It’s easy for someone to say “just don’t spend so much!”
But when you want to enjoy Christmas, you feel as though you have to spend. Moreover, if you have children, the pressure to spend money is even bigger.
So what do you do when Christmas swings around and you know finances are tight? Rather than let the stress and anxiety get you down, let’s take a look at 10 creative ways you can save money during Christmas without losing any of the sparkle.
If you’re the kind of person who buys everyone a gift because you simply can’t help yourself, it’s now time to prioritise.
People will understand if you can’t get them a present this year. Don’t feel as though you’re obligated to make everyones dreams come true at Christmas. You’re not.
Sit down with your friends and family and explain your situation. Then, either decide to yourself who will get getting gifts this year and who could maybe get something handmade, or set a strict price limit.
Make A Handmade Gift
I think the handmade gift I mentioned above is a fun idea. If you haven’t got the money to splash out on a present, going down the handmade route will not only save you money, but it will also ensure that Christmas doesn’t lose any of its sparkle.
There are plenty of things you can make with you hands, from cards to mix tapes. Be creative. Show a bit of imagination. Remember, it’s always the thought that counts when it comes to Christmas gifts. When something has come from your own hand, it’s even more special.
Don’t forget that everyone loves a Christmas card. If you can’t afford to buy someone a gift this year and you don’t fancy yourself as a gift-maker, you could send cards instead.
Cards don’t cost much money to buy, and they’re a fab way of showing someone that you care about them. Make sure to include a personal message in the card.
Use Your Vouchers and Loyalty Cards
Vouchers and loyalty cards from stores are there for a reason – to reward your loyal custom throughout the year with some “free” cash.
Unfortunately, far too many of us forget to use our vouchers and loyalty cards, and as such we don’t take advantage of them. But for all you know, you could have around $30 waiting to be spent by you.
And $30 at Christmas time when you’re trying to save some money is actually quite magical. You could use it to buy food and drink, or you could buy some decorations for the house.
Make A List
One of the reasons our spending gets so out of control at Christmas is because we haven’t made a list. Without a list, we’re at the mercy of the gods. We enter supermarkets and stores without really knowing what we’re going to buy, and invariably indulge in impulse shopping.
By the time we’re done, it takes four cabs to get everything home.
This is an incredible drain on your finances. I suggest that you write up a list of everything that you need to buy, before prioritising. Is there anything on here you could do without this year?
Also, leave a few dollars over from your budget to give yourself a bit of wiggle room for when you do get tempted to buy something you hadn’t planned.
Never used eBay before? Never thought about using it for Christmas gifts? Get on there! Seriously, there are SO many amazing quality gifts on eBay for low prices that you won’t believe your luck. It’s full of great, inventive bargains.
Shop Somewhere Else
Do you have to keep shopping at the same supermarket over Christmas? What if there is a cheaper alternative?
The chances are that there is a cheaper alternative, and it’s waiting for you to visit over the festive season.
Stocking up on Christmas food can be an expensive business. Everything just seems to cost more, and yet you find yourself buy triple the amount of food you usually buy.
I suggest shopping online so that you can compare prices and bag yourself the cheapest deal. It’ll be well worth the extra time.
Try New Activities This Year
What do you and your friends and family do at Christmas time? If they’re anything like most families, you’ll eat out a few times, go to the cinema, catch a sports game, and maybe even go away for a few days.
All of these things are fun and festive, but they’re also expensive. This year, why not suggest that you guys get a bit more creative regarding how you spend time with each other? For example, you could play board games or go sledding together!
Cut Down On The Alcohol
I know, I know. Christmas wouldn’t be the same without alcohol. It’s part of what makes the festive season fun for us adults, and many of us look forward to enjoying a few glasses of wine over the holidays.
If you’re serious about saving money this Christmas but don’t want to lose any of the sparkle, it’s probably a good idea to use the money you were going to spend on alcohol on something a bit more festive, such as your decorations and lights.
You don’t need to go without alcohol entirely, but be a bit sensible about how much you buy.
Starting soon is always a good idea because you know where you are and how much money you have. Moreover, it also leaves room for a few extra gifts or decorations later in the month if you’ve managed to save a bit.
What are your best Christmas money saving tips?