3 Holiday Spending Hacks
With the Holidays fast approaching, several readers asked about budgeting and spending over these months. We all know that person in your family, maybe it is you, who goes all out on spending for Holidays. Some people may even camp out for Black Friday? Buying stuff has somehow over run our Holiday’s…
Now, I am not saying giving or receiving gifts is bad, or even spending a lot of money is bad, what is bad is going into debt to buy stuff. No matter what Holiday you celebrate these are 3 must know holiday spending hacks.
1. Free Gift
Do you have that person in your family who always gives you a gift that is not your style or it’s always the wrong size? Most people face this problem and we are just too “nice” to say anything, 🙂 so we take the gift and put it on that one closet shelf then we never touch it. Spring cleaning season comes and we donate it to Salvation Army… :/ I know it sounds terrible, but for a lot of people this is the way it works.
If you are “holiday-ing” on a budget have you ever thought about giving a free gift? It may cost you time, however I think this is a great idea if you don’t want to spend money, and you want to give a unique gift.
The "coupon book" is a great idea where you make a book for your spouse or family member that gives them things that will take YOU time to do, but will give them time to do what they want.
For example, you may give your family member with a small child a “baby sitter coupon” where you will baby sit for free one night for them. Or maybe a house cleaning coupon for your spouse so they can relax for the day and you will clean the house. I am sure you can think of some way you can give your time to your friends or family.
**This is what I did when I first moved into my Dad’s basement, I looked for ways to add value without spending money.
Related Post: 3 Minimalist Habits Everyone Should Try
2. Plan Your Spending
Budgeting is a key component to not breaking the bank when holiday spending. If you know you spend $1200 for holidays each year than in your budget you should set aside $100 for holiday spending each month. If you have not done this and are planning for next month maybe you need to start setting money aside now.
Another way to plan your spending is convincing your family to do a “Secret Santa”, this will allow you to plan your spending for one person. This is a great option if you have a large family because you don’t have to buy something for each person and you can budget for one gift that will be extremely personalized, instead of a generic gift card for each person.
3. Spend With a List
This is an overarching spending hack that can be applied for any spending. (Grocery, Clothes, Holiday, etc.) Before you go swiping away make sure you have a list and have already thought about the gift and amount you will be spending.
You can do a search online first to figure out what the cost of items are and get ideas of what you will be buying.
Most people now a days just do online holiday shopping so be sure to have a list before spending. With Amazon Prime it is easy to just keep ordering things and having gifts show up lol. This is not efficient or proactive when it comes to spending.
A personal note:
What I have found in my life, is that I honestly can go without receiving gifts. Since my parents were divorced growing up I got to experience how several different families celebrate the holidays. What I found was that I sincerely value spending “real” family time together over generic/obligatory gift giving.
I would much rather spend time with the people I love and not receive any gifts, then sit awkwardly around a table with people I only talk to 3 times a year. I would challenge you to really think about why you are giving gifts and try to separate the “obligatory” gift from the real reason we are getting together with family and friends.