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Make This a Cash Christmas

Updated on August 10, 2019

I know that it is only August when I am typing this, but imagine having a Christmas that was paid for before Christmas. Imagine a January with no lingering credit card bills. Life becomes much less stressful at the holidays when you don't have to worry about how to pay for presents. You don't have to think about gifts all year and constantly buy things, but saving money throughout the year will make for a much nicer holiday season. Start saving now so that you don't have to use your credit card this year.

There are many ways you can save money all year for holiday shopping. The very first year I attempted this I randomly stashed $1 bills in a shoebox. In December I opened it up and had $167 saved. That was the start of my paying cash for Christmas. Now I save money all year long into a separate account to cover all holiday spending. It isn't much each pay period, but it adds up and by the end of the year we have $600 or so to spend on Christmas.

There are a couple of benefits to saving money all year just for Christmas. First I like having it saved ahead of time because I know I have money set aside for something that is important to me. Second I like being able to pick up a perfect gift I might happen upon throughout the year, without worrying about fitting it into our budget. I can use my cash for Christmas any time of the year. I am not actively looking for Christmas gifts all year long, but if I find the perfect something or if I find a great gift on clearance, I can buy it. It makes it easier come holiday time and I think it makes for better gifts.

If you haven't been saving money all year long, it is not too late to start saving now. You can set aside any amount from your paychecks specifically for Christmas or holiday spending. If you don't have extra try to think of a way to earn extra. Maybe picking up some overtime, or getting a second job. People that get paid every other week will have what is considered an "extra" paycheck twice a year (those two months where there are three paychecks). You could set aside a chunk from that to cover Christmas spending.

You could save your change (I just cashed in my 6 months of change and had over $60), send in for rebates, use Swagbucks or iBotta to earn free gift cards, earn points on Recyclebank to get free magazine subscriptions for gifts, start using coupons, etc. Plan to use all of that money to go towards your holiday spending.

For the future, consider setting aside money each month all year long, or plan on setting aside part of a tax return if you get one. Many banks offer special savings accounts for holiday spending. They automatically transfer money from your checking into a holiday account each month. It is only available for withdrawal in October, just in time for holiday shopping. Trust me; it will make for a much more enjoyable holiday time if you pay for your gifts with cash. And just think of the New Year without new debt to worry about. Thinking and planning for the holidays now will certainly be worth it.

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    • bayareagreatthing profile image

      bayareagreatthing 

      10 years ago from Bay Area California

      Really good advice for anytime of the year. Using credit has become a trap for many people. It is so hard to spend the entire next year paying for Christmas.

    • profile image

      dawn 

      10 years ago

      Do you remember when banks had Christmas Clubs? Our parents and grandparents remembered how important using cash was. Now it is time that we do to. Good reminder.

    • Nemingha profile image

      Nemingha 

      10 years ago

      I managed to have a cash Christmas last year and plan on doing the same again this year.

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 

      10 years ago from East Coast, United States

      You are right about the all cash Christmas. Why spoil a wonderful holiday by going crazy with the credit card.

    • advisor4qb profile image

      advisor4qb 

      10 years ago from On New Footing

      I am always shopping clearance racks, and sometimes I find great Christmas gifts that way! When you have as many to buy for as I do, every little bit helps!

    • dohn121 profile image

      dohn121 

      10 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

      I've been thinking about this for the last year. This is a great idea (I'm sure the credit card companies won't like you for it!) The last things I want for my friends and family to do is go into more debt just to get lil' ole me a X-Mas present! All of us should be doing this!

    • thelesleyshow profile image

      TheLesleyShow 

      10 years ago from US

      Great information. I'm one of those people who is always stressed out at Christmas due to lack of money. I plan on stocking up at Wal-Mart next weekend and putting everything on layaway for this year. I truly enjoyed this HUB. Thumbs up!

    • jiberish profile image

      jiberish 

      10 years ago from florida

      Good information, nice Hub. This week was the first time I went into a trift store, and was amazingly surpirsed at the savings on general items. This will be a place I will shop also this year.

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