1. Set a Spending Limit and Keep Track.
At this time of year, it’s easy to get excited when you’re in the shops or shopping online, and you can overspend. If you plan how much money you would like to spend on each person, this can make it easier to stay on top of. Set up notifications on your banking app to tell you when and what you have spent (horrifying but necessary!) too.
2. Buy Second Hand (A More Sustainable Option Too!)
Ebay, charity/thrift shops, Amazon (like new)… are all a great option when looking for the perfect present, especially if you are searching for something vintage or one of a kind! This way, you can find something that feels authentic and it’s a much more sustainable option for our environment too.
Here’s a website that we like for finding charity shops near you!
3. Check Prices and Compare.
Once you have your heart set on something, it’s easy to spend a lot of money without thinking about other choices. Using different websites to compare the price of something before paying out the money means you can often save yourself some pounds!
4. Do it Yourself! (Make Presents)
Who doesn’t love a handmade present? Bath salts and scrubs, homemade baked goods or candles make great gifts and the supplies to make them don’t have to cost you an arm and a leg! (See here for ‘how to make bath salts’)
If you are lacking creativity or are unable to make things, you can always use a Christmas card to gift them some time with you doing something they love together! “It’s the thought that counts” at Christmas, and quality time with loved ones is what it’s all about anyway! (See the last tip for ideas!)
5. Budget, budget, budget!
Now this is tricky for some people (us included!) and it’s so easy to get over-excited, especially when there are Christmas sales and offers everywhere!
So… Make lists of everything you need to buy and have bought (keep receipts) or ask for help from a trusted source/friend- this may be the best option to keep your accountability if you are someone who struggles with this.
6. Skip the Wrapping Paper…
Use gift bags instead! This may seem like a counter-intuitive move but there’s method to the madness…An investment in some sturdy, reusable gift bags can save you money in the long term and if you use fabric ones like these they can act as an extra gift too!
Another thing you can do, is use newspaper to wrap your presents (vintage!) You can dress up the presents using ribbon or string (which is reusable) and some Christmas foliage.
7. Look for Free Social Activities
This isn’t about presents, but if you are gifting someone with quality time, you may like to use one of these ideas for them to ‘cash in’ with you!
It’s easy to get ‘FOMO’ during the festive period if you feel like you can’t afford to be sociable.
However, not everything over the festive period has to be expensive! There are a lot of things you can do that don’t cost at all or cost very little. Here are some of our favourite ideas to save money:
- Christmas markets- to get in the festive mood, wrap up and have a wander around a Christmas market for some window shopping or treat yourself to a hot chocolate!
- Pop on your hat and scarf for an evening walk to look at the Christmas decorations and lights in your local area.
- Christmas crafts at home! Jam to some Christmas music and get creating! (maybe some of those DIY Christmas gifts?)
- Get cosy with blankets whilst watching a Christmas film!
- Bake some Christmas cookies or cakes (Christmas biscuit recipes – BBC Food)