Ways to Save Money This Holiday Season is undoubtedly a question many of us are asking. It’s horrible to think about cutting back at the time of year when you want to be extravagant and profligate. But even though the prices are rising and our salaries are not, it’s still possible to cut back while managing to give a variety of fabulous gifts to our loved ones or present a wonderful celebration. As we all know, women are the best when it comes to saving money as the men in our lives would be content with selling the house to buy their gifts, but with these 9 Astonishingly Easy Ways to Save Money This Holiday Season we won’t need to worry about that!
1. Know Your Limits!
Remember when we mentioned that women are better than men with money? This is where it comes into play as men have a habit of not knowing when to stop spending despite the fact you are screaming at them to put that bottle of 30 year old brandy down. Knowing your limits is one of the most important ways to save money as it encourages you and your family to budget. The economic pressures has resulted in many retailers bringing their New Year sales forward so you are going to be very tempted by perceived bargains. By all means take advantage of the knock down prices but don’t be tempted into spending over your set limits, even for a big saving.
2. Make It Yourself
Making gifts yourself can not only save you money, but it can also turn out to be a better gift as it shows you have put your love, time, and effort into making it. So why not consider making your own gifts this year. Home make cookies, sweet treats, jars of goodies and handcrafted items wrapped beautifully are all acceptable gifts.
Pledges are nearly always free and just take some time and effort. Pledging to help clean out your friend’s garage or to decorate their spare room might be more valuable to your loved one than any expensive perfume might be. This is one of the best ways to save money on a grand scale and who could doubt the sincerity of such a gesture.
4. Dressing the Tree
Tree decorations are nearly always a hidden expense which people never take into account when trying to save. This is why you should consider making your own decorations because every little helps. You can wrap chocolates in silver or gold foil, create paper chains to act as tinsel, or create baubles from biscuits dotted with silver and gold. Who said decorating couldn’t be fun?
5. Bring It Together
Another tactic you could use is to bring your family together. Everybody likes to save money and if you tell your family and friends, you can all plan that each person brings one part of Christmas Lunch (or dinner). Not only are you sharing the cost but also the burden of all that cooking. Everyone will feel proud of their contribution but then you can all bask in the glory of the feast and the time you’ve spent together because that’s what Christmas is all about. Without a doubt this is one of the best ways to save money.
6. Don’t Get Ripped off
One of the biggest holiday rip-offs are Christmas cards. Whilst cards themselves are pretty cheap quality ones can be very pricey and, the cost of mailing them all might prove extortionate. To solve this problem you can consider making your own this year or sending an e-card. One of the most enjoyable Christmas activities can include making cards with your children because it allows them to get creative while you are saving at the same time.
7. Wrapping Paper
Another extortionate expense, why be forced to buy rolls of this stuff every Christmas when you can just use coloured paper which looks just as good? Self-explanatory really, old wallpaper, coloured paper, maybe even get your children to draw a picture on it, the possibilities are endless!
8. The Best Things in Life Are Cheap
There’s no need to splash out on expensive entertainment during the holidays. Reclaim quality family time with games and activities. Things like jig-saws are not only cheap, but they allow full family participation. Buying some board games can also be another one of the ways to save money as many traditional games have been modernised. Ms. Scarlet with the revolver in the library might have stepped aside for the irritated wife with the frying pan in the living room, but it can still provide hours of family fun. There are also plenty of games that cost absolutely nothing. There are plenty of resources for free games on the Internet – I was quite enamoured by the Photo Scavenger hunt on this site funxmasgames.org
Make ways to save money part of your holiday planning and actual celebrations. You’ll appreciate them more and actually have more inclination to follow them if you put a positive spin on them. You might find you’re a fudge maker extraordinaire or turn up a lost family heirloom when you fulfil your pledge to clean out auntie’s basement. Involve the kids wherever you can. One of the very cornerstones of saving money at holiday times is to not let people feel they are missing out. Just maybe – saving money this year might rekindle some of those old fashioned values Christmas once stood for – sharing, caring and enjoying your family – not who has the biggest credit card debt come January.
Those are my Astonishingly Easy Ways to Save Money this Holiday Season. What budgeting strategies are you going to be following this Christmas?
Top Photo Credit: airefresco