Follow the budget friendly shopping tips in this article to help you stay on track with your spending and get family and friends what they really want for the holidays.
It’s that time of year again and things are bound to stress you out. Planning, budgeting, and trying to get everything done on time.
The holiday season is busy and stressful enough. So the last thing people need to worry about is too many bills in January.
Follow these budget-friendly tips to help you achieve the Norman Rockwell Christmas of your dreams as much as you can this year.
How to Make Christmas Shopping Easier in 2021
Make a List to Stick to a Christmas Budget
Write down each person to buy a gift for and how much they cost. Add everything up and if the number is higher than the budget, start paring it down.
This digital gift planner will help you keep the gift planning and budget on track for the holidays.
Related Content: Download Free Christmas Planner Printable Pack
Decide Who to Really Buy a Gift For
Just because someone has 30 friends, it doesn’t mean they have to buy a gift for all of them.
Many people are relieved to stop a gift exchange that just creates stress, and instead get together for dinner or an afternoon.
With the quarantine, you can arrange many digital gatherings via Zoom now as well as watch parties on Amazon Prime Video.
Group People Together to Save Money
Many people tend to buy multiple gifts for entire families. This can get super expensive fast.
Instead, group gift-giving together to save some money.
For instance, you can gift a family a basket with everything needed for a movie or game night (popcorn, drinks, candy, movie rental vouchers, etc.).
This makes a memorable gift that gives them the most precious thing – spending time together as a family.
Save or Shop Ahead of Time
It’s probably too late to do it this year but next year, start setting aside money from each paycheck for shopping in December.
You can also start buying a few things every few months if you come across a good deal.
You can check out someone’s Amazon wish list to find out what they want so you can get ideas.
By starting to save early and/or buying items ahead of time, you can avoid doing a bunch of shopping at one time and spend only cash you have on hand.
You can open a targeted savings account for the holidays in most banks and have a certain amount from your paycheck automatically credited to it every 2 weeks.
Even if it’s only $10 every paycheck, that’s $240 by the end of the year. It’s still something to ease up expenses.
Watch Out for Sales
If you already know what your gift recipient wants, then all that’s left to do is keep an eye out for sales.
There are often discounts for shopping online, and since most people are home this year, a lot of sites throw in free shipping.
17 Effective Holiday Shopping Tips That Saves Time and Money shares some of the best tips for saving time and money during the holidays.
Homemade Gift Ideas
If you love to cook, then you can make a gift from your kitchen like a dessert or pastries.
Feeling crafty instead? You can make ornaments for friends who love to collect them.
Whatever the talent, start early to avoid creating more stress in the weeks before Christmas.
5 Thoughtful Gifts to Give without Going Broke shares some valuable homemade gift ideas.
Comparison Shop Online
2021 is definitely the year of buying most things online and it’s easier than ever to comparison shop for the best deals.
Checking out the websites of your favorite stores can save valuable time and money. By doing that research, you’ll know a good deal when you see it.
You can see all the deals for hundreds of stores and get $20 as well on Rakuten when you sign up here.
Donate to Charity
This doesn’t help people follow a budget per se, but it does serve as a reminder that many people need help at this time of year.
Helping others can also help them feel grateful for what they have instead of stressed about what they don’t have.
It doesn’t have to be hundreds of dollars if you can’t afford it. Even as little as $5 makes a big difference.
By creating and sticking to a holiday plan and budget, you can reduce stress during the Christmas rush and in January, when only the bills remain.
By paring down to only the necessities, you have more time and money and can focus on quality, personal gifts, rather than quantity.
And that, in turn, makes it easier to focus on the best part of the season – time with family and friends.
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