Christmas Money Saving Tips | Is it impossible to get through the ‘Silly Season’ without spending a fortune, especially when we see so many “Christmas Deals” and “Christmas Savings”? No! That’s right, I said no, it’s not impossible. There are many ways to save money this holiday season and we have compiled a few of the best in this hand guide to saving money this Christmas.
Budget on Spending Less
Yes, this sounds obvious but make a budget. Setting a limit and sticking to it will help to ensure that you don’t spend too much money. Work out a general budget or a limit per person, for example, R100. Sure, this means that you won’t be able to buy that incredibly expensive gift, but you won’t regret it come January.
Don’t be Afraid to Prioritise
We would all love to give a gift to everyone we know. The reality, of course, is that none of us can afford to do that. So, the best thing to do is make a list of the people who are truly important. That way you won’t buy unnecessary gifts. It might be difficult to decide who not to buy a gift for but you will have to be honest with yourself. Making this list will also help you work out your budget once you know how many people you really need to buy gifts for.
We get bombarded with the words “Christmas Specials”, “Holiday Specials”, “Christmas Deals”, and “Christmas Savings” which all sound so tempting. Before we know it we have spent more than we planned. Many of these seemingly amazing deals are actually not as great as you think. A common trick by stores is to slowly increase prices before the holidays and then to advertise it at the original price. This lets you think it is an amazing deal, when in fact it isn’t.
Another problem with “deals” is that even ones that are genuine bargains are so tempting that we buy more. This leads to us spending even more money.
Another great gift you can give is a gift card. If you know which shops someone likes to go to you can get them a gift card for one of those shops. If you are not sure of which shops they like, you can simply by a gift card for a shopping mall. That way the gift card can be used at any shop in that specific mall.
One advantage of giving a gift card is that you can be sure that the money given that way, will be used for a gift. It can’t be used for everyday groceries or petrol etc. Another great thing about gift cards is that you, or the person you give it to, can keep loading more money onto it until they can afford something bigger.
Secret Santa is a great way to save money. In case you don’t know how Secret Santa works, let’s explain.
Firstly, the names of everyone who will be involved are written on pieces of paper, folded up and dropped into a hat. Everyone chooses a piece of paper at random, without knowing whose name is on it. The person on the piece of paper you choose is the person you have to buy a gift for. There is a limit set for how expensive a gift may be. The gifts are bought and kept together until it is time to give them out. When they are being handed out, no one knows who bought the gift.
The great thing about Secret Santa is that everyone gets a gift and you only have to buy one gift. This can be done at an office or even at home.
Of course, another option to save money is to make a gift. What makes a gift special is not how expensive it is, but how meaningful and thoughtful it is. Making a gift yourself shows that you care and that you thought about the person and what to give them. Making a gift is much cheaper than buying one. You could even do something like baking a batch of cookies.
You probably have something like a Pick n Pay SmartShopper, OK Card or Clicks Clubcard in your wallet. Don’t be scared to use those points. Every time you swipe the card you will earn some points. These points can be used to buy things without needing to spend actual money.
Shopping online is not only cheaper but it is more convenient. You don’t even have to leave your own home. There are often amazing specials online and many places like Takealot often include discount vouchers in various magazines.
There are a few tips to help you save money and spend less this festive season.
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Written by: Clifford Ekron
Last updated: December 13, 2018