Holiday spending is often associated with overspending or blowing through savings accounts. Sometimes it’s because of financial stress from high credit card bills or paying off student loans. Whatever the reason, it’s important to get control of your finances if you want to enjoy the holidays without feeling overwhelmed.
We’ve compiled a list of holiday budget tips that help you avoid holiday debt and stay within your means. These 5 money saving holiday ideas include smart shopping strategies, budgeting tools and fun ways to celebrate the holidays.
1. Make A Budget In October To Save Money For The Holidays
Plan ahead by making sure your household budget is in order well before the holidays. You can start by reviewing your expenses on an annual basis. Is there anything you’re doing this year for which you could do more cheaply? If so, look for ways to reduce your expenditures. Consider cutting back on extras like frequent flyer miles or dining out in restaurants.
2. Set Up Automatic Savings Accounts
This may seem like a no brainer but many people don’t set up automatic transfers to their bank account each month. It’s worth taking some time to do this as part of your regular monthly routine. Not only will it free up some cash that is currently going un-invested, it makes it easier to save throughout the year.
3. Give Yourself A Financial Allowance
Give yourself a mental allowance when deciding how much you’re willing to spend on gifts, meals or other nonessential spending items each week or month. This allows you to spend less than what you normally would while still enjoying the company of family and friends.
4. Cut Back On Alcohol & Entertainment During The Holidays
The holidays tend to be one of the biggest times we’ll blow our budgets as a society. It’s easy to let ourselves go with parties and expensive gifts. If you find yourself getting into trouble with alcohol or entertainment spending consider taking a beat and cutting down.
5. Buy Generic Gifts Instead Of Name Brand Items
Buying generic gifts instead of name brand equivalents can cut down on cost. At the same time, the recipient will appreciate having something special rather than an everyday item. There’s nothing wrong with buying name brands for a small percentage of recipients, especially if the gift recipient has asked specifically for those specific items.
The holidays are supposed to be enjoyable but sometimes they can put us in a stressful situation where we feel like we have no choice but to overspend. By using a few simple steps you can make sure that you end the season financially sound. Also, you might want to stay away from any sort of gambling as well, in real and online casino houses!