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Save Money On Gift Giving - It Doesn't Cost A Lot To Give A Great Gift
I know that Christmas has just passed, but if you want to drastically reduce the amount of money you spend on gifts each year then you need to start thinking about next Christmas right now. Actually, you need to think about all the gifts you give in a year. There are birthdays, anniversaries, baptisms, weddings, holidays, house warming parties, graduations and more. There are things you can do all year long to keep your gift-giving costs at a minimum.
First, have a plan. At the very least, try to know exactly who you will be buying for this year. If possible think of some ideas so you can look for these items. This will help you find a great gift for little money. Second, keep your eyes peeled all the time for gifts. Whenever I go shopping I always check out the clearance sections. You can find great items for very little money if you look at the clearance sections all year long. If you wait until the last minute, you will likely pay full price.
Third, shop second hand. I have found many new items (in boxes or with tags) at second hand stores and garage sales. No one will ever know that you didn't pay full price at a department store. Fourth, think outside the box. Traditional gifts can be expensive. Think about what the person truly loves or needs and try to come up with something unique. Maybe they love cookies, but don't have the time to bake. You could bake them a batch of cookies each month as a birthday gift. Maybe you know a busy mom that just had a baby. Why not add a few meals to her freezer rather than buying her yet another baby outfit?
Fifth, sign up for daily deal sites like Groupon or Eversave. There are dozens of these sites out there and they offer great deals every day. I recently got a $20 Amazon gift card for just $10 through one of these sites. Now when I need to buy a gift I can get it for half price. There are a lot of daily deals that are worthless to me, but I have gotten some awesome gifts for great prices through these. You get one email a day with one deal usually. If it isn't something you are interested in delete it.
Sixth, earn free gift cards. I earn numerous gift cards for free each year and I use the majority of them as gifts. I use MyPoints and click on their daily emails to earn points. I redeem the points for gift cards, recently a $25 Subway card. Invariably I run across other promotions throughout the year and usually use the gift cards I earn as gifts.
Seventh, keep your eyes out for special promotions online. Before Christmas an online photo store offered free personalized desk calendars and all I had to pay was shipping. I created one for my husband that he absolutely loves (it has pictures of our kids) for only $5. Eighth, sign up for free samples. I sign up for numerous free samples every month. Many I save for stocking stuffers or Easter baskets. I also save free samples of toiletries and household supplies and put together a care package for my brother who is still a poor college student. He is very appreciative.
Ninth, have a gift closet or box. If all the boys your son's age love Pokemon and you find a great sale on Pokemon cards buy extra. Then when your son gets invited to a birthday party, as kids often do, you will already have a gift bought at a great price.
As you can see there are many ways you can keep your gift giving costs down. It is just so easy to save money, especially when you plan ahead. I would love to hear your ideas in the comments so we can help each other stretch our hard earned dollars as far as we can.