Christmas can be an expensive time of year, but with just a few simple adjustments to your spending, you can save up quickly for the holidays. Saving for Christmas doesn’t have to involve big sacrifices or major lifestyle changes – the key is simply making small, more mindful decisions about your spending.
Here are five tips to help you supercharge your savings:
Create a budget.
Start by creating a budget for your holiday spending. This is the most important step in saving for Christmas. Take into account all the costs associated with the holidays, including gifts, decorations, cards and postage, travel expenses, entertaining guests or hosting parties, and any other seasonal activities you plan to participate in.
Set savings goals each week or month. Decide how much you want to set aside each week or month to achieve your holiday spending goal.
Track your spending. Keep an eye on your spending throughout the year so that you can make adjustments as needed and stick to your budget.
Cut back on unnecessary expenses. Look for opportunities throughout the year where you could cut down on non-essential purchases, such as eating out or buying new clothes.
Create a list.
Create a list of all the gifts you plan to buy and stick to it. This will help you avoid overspending during the holidays. You may even want to set a spending limit for each person on your list.
Creating a list will also help you plan ahead. Start shopping early and look for deals to stretch your budget further. You can even shop online, where discounts or free shipping are often offered.
Prepare meals at home.
To save money for Christmas fast, skip eating out and prepare meals at home. You can also look for discounts and coupons to stretch your grocery budget.
Create meals that use inexpensive ingredients, such as grains, beans, and vegetables. These are usually cheaper than more expensive proteins like beef or chicken and can be just as nutritious.
Stick to creating meals with ingredients you already have to avoid extra grocery trips.
Find extra ways to make money.
If you’re looking for ways to save money quickly for Christmas, consider taking on freelance or contract work such as writing, graphic design, or web development.
You can also find other extra sources of income, such as tutoring, pet sitting, or delivering food. You could even try selling items you no longer need or use, like clothes, electronics, and furniture. All of these activities can help you save up for Christmas.
If you are considering getting a part-time job, be aware of when you will receive your paycheck. Will it be after Christmas? That way, you can plan ahead and budget accordingly to save up for the holiday season.
Use rewards points, cashback programs, and coupon codes.
You can save significant money for Christmas by taking advantage of rewards points, cashback programs, and coupon codes.
Look for deals on items you’re interested in buying, such as electronics or toys. Some stores may offer additional discounts for memberships or loyalty programs, so make sure to check if there are any offers you can take advantage of.
You may also be able to save money by using gift cards, which can often be bought at a discount.
Finally, don’t forget to look for coupon codes online or in-store flyer ads. Use these to your advantage and save significant money on holiday gifts.
Skip out on impulse buys.
Impulse purchases can quickly add up and derail your budget. Stick to the items you need and resist buying things that are not on your list. To help with this, make sure you take the time to shop around and compare prices before making a purchase.
Things you should avoid purchasing will be:
Photos with Santa
Avoid spending money on overpriced Santas photos and find a location where they host a Santa, and you can take photos for free. Pictures with Santa can cost about $40 to $50 for a package.
As much as Christmas pajamas are cute, they can surely add up quickly. Instead of buying new clothes yearly, wear what you already have and save money.
Spending money on new Christmas on new clothes is a waste, and it can be used elsewhere.
Many people are fans of receiving gift cards, and others aren't. I enjoy getting gift cards for free, but I have to be 100% sure that the person will use them when it comes to gifting them.
Purchasing a small amount on a gift card to a location where the amount you need for an average purchase is way more will not make the person jump out to use it.
If you purchase a gift card that will give that person something free, then chances are they will use it right away, vs. giving them a $5.00 gift card to their favorite restaurant, for example.
Also, know that many gift cards go unused, and do you want your card to sit in a drawer collecting dust? According to USA Today, nearly half (47%) of Americans have one unused gift card, voucher, or store credit, totaling $21 billion nationwide.
If you don’t know what the person likes and give them a gift card for a place they don’t go to or enjoy, it’s not a great gift!
To save money for Christmas fast, don't purchase Christmas cards. Instead, send out well wishes to friends and family via text or email.
It may not be as traditional as a physical Christmas card, but it's much more budget-friendly and won't add to your list of holiday expenses.
Avoid buying Christmas decorations.
Avoid buying Christmas decorations and use what you have if you want to decorate. You can also make your own decorations that will cost you nothing. You could even try making ornaments out of recycled materials.
You could also use a more natural approach and decorate with greenery, pine cones, and plant materials. This will make your space cozy and help you save money for Christmas.
So there are some great tips to help you save money for Christmas fast. With a little planning, budgeting, and creativity, you can make sure your holiday season is merry – without breaking the bank.