10 Ways To Save Money When Christmas Shopping
The holiday season is marked by lots of offers and deals that can grab the attention of any shopper. If you love shopping, you need to learn how to keep a check on your expenses - no matter how great the deals are! You don’t want to exceed your budget and end up with little or no money left over. The best way to do this is to control your spending habits and abstain from buying everything you see. The offer might be tempting, but chances are you don’t need it right now.
Check out these money-saving tips for the avid shopper:
Create a Budget and Stick to It
If you don’t have a budget for your Christmas shopping, then you can easily spend way too much and be regretting it later. Set an exact amount for your holiday shopping, and make sure you stick to it. Even if you find something really irresistible, abstain from buying it.
Spend Only What You Can Afford
Everyone wants to be the person who gives the most gifts, or the most expensive, flashy gifts. But do you really have the money to pay for all of this stuff? If not, stop trying to be Mr. Popular or Miss Popular and spend only what you can afford easily. There is no need to go overboard with your expenses. What reeally matters is the thought you put into each gift.
Make A Checklist
A checklist always helps to ensure that you purchase all the things you need, and avoid what you don’t. Prepare the list carefully to include only necessary items. This works every time (as long as you stick to the list!).
Buy Only What is Necessary
You don’t need to buy everything when you go shopping. There are many things that might catch your attention, especially with all the Holiday sales. But save it for some other time. You can always buy it next month or on some other occasion. If it isn’t absolutely important right now, it is better to let it go.
Check Out Online Offers
Online stores offer more discounts and attractive deals than retail stores. Plus, you can get the orders delivered to your home or directly to the gift recipient. There are also various combo offers and “deals of the day” where you can save a lot of money. The best thing about online offers is they’re usually even cheaper than the ones provided by retail stores.
Avoid Gift Cards
If you're considering giving gift cards or vouchers, you need to be aware of the finer details. Gift cards need to be redeemed within a certain period. If you retain the card beyond the expiry period, then you will lose the value of the card. Moreover, the retailer could go into administration and this would mean the end of gift cards. They will just not accept the cards and the entire value will go to waste. Make sure that you understand the norms and policies before giving a gift card.
Pack Gifts for Kids in Huge Boxes
Kids usually do not consider the monetary value of gifts. They are interested in the size of the gifts. The larger the box, the happier they get. A good way to stay within your shopping budget is to pack the gift item in a large box and add a lot of smaller, less expensive items along with it. Try to keep the size of the box big enough to excite the kid but not break his heart if the gift is not what was expected.
Plan Your Gifts Well Ahead of Time
If you are not comfortable spending a lot on gifts during the holidays, then you can plan your expenses throughout the year. Get a few gifts at a time. This will reduce the financial load on you and it will give you enough time to get the best gifts possible.
Get a Reusable Shopping Bag
The problem with shopping during the holiday season is that people tend to shop a lot and if they forget to carry their own bag, then they may end up paying for disposable plastic bags as well. You should definitely think about getting reusable shopping bags. These are eco-friendly, washable and can be used multiple times. Plus, they are stylish so you will love to take them with you on your shopping trips.
Don’t Buy Cards, Make Them By Hand
Greeting cards are a great way to spread Holiday cheer to your friends and family. Instead of buying cards, try making handmade cards. It is much more fun, has a lot of sentimental value, and costs practically nothing. Don’t worry if you are not good at drawing. You can always make a simple design. It is the thought that counts and not your artistic capabilities.
© 2015 Lisa Williams