Picture this. You saved a great deal of money year-round by walking, instead of commuting to work by going without that much-wanted Frappuccino cup for days, weeks, months. You controlled your cravings and ate home meals instead of going out for dinner. You switched to frugal habits and set aside a considerable amount of cash. All of this and more, only to spend it at once on your Christmas shopping? That might not be a very bright idea.
It’s a generally known fact that people tend to spend too much when the Christmas season comes. Accordingly, an average American tends to spend about $600-$700 on gifts alone. Don’t be part of the statistics. Read along to find out how to cut back on your holiday spending.
Establish a Limit
What most people don’t know is that they start overspending innocently. You find an $80 cute sweater that you think is perfect for your sister. It might have crossed your mind that it’s a bit pricey, but hey, it’s Christmas, isn’t it? The problem with this is you create a mindset of spending at least $80 for every present you buy to be fair to everyone. Your mom, dad, brothers, grandparents – the list goes on and the total piles up. Buying one expensive gift is not an issue if you’re giving a present to only one person. However, this is highly unlikely. To keep your spending in check, you either limit the budget of each gift you buy or limit the sum of people you will give gifts to.
Cut the Your List of Gift
Despite spending only $10 or $15 for each of the 50 people in your gift list, it would still total up to $500-$750. That’s a lot, especially if you’re in a tight budget. That’s why limiting the number of people on your list is necessary. However, this might cause misunderstandings and hurt those who were taken out of the list. To avoid this, try to:
- Talk to them. There’s nothing wrong with letting them know how you’re cutting your budget this year for some personal reasons. Family and friends will be among the first few to understand this. Who knows, they might be scrimping over their holiday budget as well.
- Give GC’s and one gift for everyone in the family instead of buying one for each. This will save you money and give them a chance to do something as a family.
- Skip the Extra’s this year. Some give gifts to neighbors and other unrelated people. If you’re one of those and trying to save money this year, write these ‘extra people’ a handmade card instead.
Buy Secondhand Items from Thrift Stores
Not only are these cheap, but they are also environment-friendly. There are a lot of great finds in secondhand shops though the options might be limited. You also have to be considerate about the recipients’ preferences if you think of buying used items. Some people are uncomfortable about using other’s old clothes or objects. For these people, consider buying secondhand books or some vintage collectibles.