The leftover honey-baked ham and smoked turkey is wrapped up and stowed away in your refrigerator. The Thanksgiving pies of sweet potato pie, cheese cake and apple pie have been devoured, and you’re ready to kick off the Christmas season. Christmas is just around the corner and you know what that means — Christmas shopping!
Unfortunately, Christmas shopping season kicks with chaotic holiday last minute shoppers, shortage of clothes, electronics, toys and movies. Don’t stress out yet looking for the perfect gift for your children, spouse, friends or neighbors. Break out your wrapping paper, ribbons and Christmas cards for your holiday gifts.
This time of the year can be rough on anyone’s wallet — there are gifts to buy, holiday parties to plan of bubbly champagne, delicious apple cider and wine, and of course, those jaw-dropping holiday sales. Remember all that holiday cheer doesn’t have to burn a hole in your wallet or run you into debt. Don’t worry — we’ve have some tips for Christmas holiday hacks to avoid going broke and staying sane while navigating your holiday shopping madness.
Create a Holiday savings fund
The holidays can create a joyous time for holiday shoppers but also be one of the most hectic for shoppers during the holiday season. Don’t wait until after Thanksgiving to start ranking up debt onto your credit cards of buying holiday gifts. Start early by creating a holiday savings fund to start your holiday shopping early for your family, friends, coworkers and neighbors.
Your holiday savings fund can be set up at the start of every year, set up an automatic transfer from your checking account to fund this account — either every week, every two weeks(when your paycheck hits) or even just once a month. During the holidays lets say you usually spend around $500 per year, that’s about $40 per month on average, or $20 per paycheck. The holiday savings fund is a lot more manageable than coming up with excessive amount of change around the holidays — or even piling up unnecessary card card debt.
Pay In Cash
As you are heading out this holiday season to do shopping, arm yourself with a clear plan: a holiday list of who you want to buy for and how much you can spend on each gift for your family, friends or neighbors. To keep track of your expenses, consider using cash instead of credit cards. That way, you can go shopping to buy the least expensive gifts on your list with only enough cash on hand to stick to your shopping budget. REMEMBER this is the time of year where holiday sales associate tempt you to sign up for a store credit card offer. BE AWARE: Those store credit cards tend to have very high interest rates and hidden fees for not using the credit card regularly.
Get Thrifty or Bargain shop!
Thrift store shopping during the holiday season brings a magnificent place, filled to the brim with endless possibilities that are just waiting to be re-imagined. Navigating the racks, shelves, buckets and piles of pre-owned pieces can be exciting for any holiday casual shopper. Thrifting has become a popular choice for many shoppers especially for ones who are looking for their next creative or vintage new style, less-costly outfit or last minute Christmas gift.
Thrift shopping is very cost effective, finding valuable items for next to nothing, helps the community and they transport you to another time- one man’s trash is another man’s treasure! Instead of going to the mall this holiday season, take your Christmas list to the thrift store, Groupon, Ebay and the antique store. Explore the treasures and wonders of bargaining shopping to find more personal and far less expensive gifts that everyone else is gifting this holiday season.
Think Outside the box: Homemade gifts
Not everyone this holiday season can needs that Coco Chanel#5, 10Karat diamond earrings or Polo Ralph Lauren Cologne. Do it yourself this holiday season by thinking outside the box and creating your own homemade gifts of Christmas food baskets, homemade hand soaps, Mason jar candy cane salt scrubs, ombre tote bag, homemade jams and gilded notebooks. You’ll save a ton of money baking mouth-watering treats of cookies, making scented spa scrubs, candles or jam and putting them in nice, decorative and less-expensive packages for your family, friends, coworkers and neighbors.