Five ways to control Christmas costs

November 2, 2017

With Christmas fast approaching now is the time to plan your spending so you can get great gifts for family and friends that won’t break the bank.

Begin with a festive budget

It won’t get you in the party mood but it all comes back to budgeting. List everyone that you intend to buy for, then budget a reasonable amount that you can afford to spend. Making a shopping list will also help you avoid impulse buying and keep track of your spending. And remember if you are an early shopper keep a list of  who you have already bought for so you don’t forget!  Our Christmas budget planner can help you plan for and keep track of all your expenses. Put some money aside for January too so you have enough to pay your regular bills in the New Year.

Keep your credit card under wraps

Credit card debt can be very expensive if you can’t repay it in full immediately or within a few months. When you are spending the cash in your pocket, you will be much less likely to overspend than if you pay with a credit card. If you are using your credit card a good tip is to track your spending as you do your shopping – send yourself an email each time you use your card and keep tabs on your total spending.

Use up gift vouchers that are best before end of 2017

If you save your vouchers for a rainy day check their expiry date. If they are going to expire soon see if you could put them towards a present for someone. Or even better, treat yourself to something nice!

Pounce on any deals that are on your gift list

If you have a present in mind, shop around and compare prices, both in store and online.  Keep your eye out for discounts and promotional offers.  If you do plan to do some shopping online, be careful. What might seem like a great deal could be more expensive when you add on delivery charges, so be sure to take them into account. Make sure you leave plenty of time for delivery too.

Go creative with Christmas crafts 

You don’t have to spend a fortune to give great Christmas gifts. What about making your own festive candles and Christmas tree decorations? Ideas include making a photobook of memories for a grandparent, home-made chutney for family or friends. There are many more ideas online on how to save money by making your own gifts. And it’s a great way to get the whole family involved and working together.

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