Money Bite-Size Read:
- We spend more money each year on Christmas gifts.
- This pressure to spend money can be stressful when you’re trying to save.
- Here’s 5 Christmas shopping hacks to help you save money when buying your Christmas gifts this holiday season.
The Money Bites Take:
There’s pressure to spend huge amounts of money at Christmas, but you can still save money with these Christmas shopping hacks.
Christmas is a time where there is pressure to spend.
In some countries, one-fifth of people will go into debt to pay for Christmas festivities, with even more money expected to be spent this year. Australians spend an average of $93 on a significant Christmas gift, which if you’re buying a few gifts for family and friends, quickly adds up.
It’s important to feel comfortable with how much money leaves your wallet this season.
With mince pies now being on the supermarket shelves before December, that pressure to spend starts early. However, you can also take advantage of that early Christmas cheer to start your shopping early and within budget.
The panic of needing to find the perfect gift while navigating crowded shops full of other panicking buyers is the last place you want to be on Christmas Eve. So if that’s normally you at Christmas, this is the article for you. Christmas shopping doesn’t need to be stressful. We go through the same holiday gift buying traditions every year, and how we do this is something we can get better at.
Here’s 5 Christmas shopping hacks to help you save money:
1. Budget before you buy
Most of us start our Christmas shopping with a general idea of who we need to buy gifts for before hitting the shops with our wallets open. The problem with this unplanned approach is that it can very quickly blow out your budget. Instead, a better strategy is to budget before you buy: make a list of who you need to buy presents for and divide that up based on your total spending budget. You can either cut down your list of names or buy some budget Christmas gifts. Who do you want to allocate your gift budget to?
2. Start planning your gifts early
If you’re like me, once Christmas Eve spent running around a crowded shopping mall was one nightmare Christmas shopping experience too many. If you start early, you can take advantage of buying Christmas gifts during sales including the Black Friday sales which take place at the end of November each year. Planning in advance means you can score bargains on your Christmas shopping before Christmas Day. Do you want a relaxed Christmas eve or one spent running around the shops in a panic?
3. Ask someone what they want for Christmas
Every sports star knows that, if you don’t have a clear idea of where the goal is, you’re not going to win. After one too many Christmases spent getting gifts I would never use, I decided enough was enough. Now I simply ask someone I’m getting a gift for what they want. They get what they want and I’m spending sustainably because what I buy them will be used and not end up in landfill. And if they refuse to answer, they’ll get socks – because everyone needs socks. So this year ask the question, What would you like for Christmas?
4. Set spending limits on gift giving
It’s incredibly awkward when you receive an expensive gift but you’re buying gifts on a budget. To avoid this feeling, set a spending limit as a family or group of friends. You can also do this in a large group by running a Secret Santa, with a clear price guide. This keeps the focus on the act of gift giving itself rather than the price tag. It also means you can enjoy Christmas on a budget and support others to do the same. What will your spending limit be this year?
5. If you get stuck, make your gifts meaningful
Some people are incredibly difficult to buy for and sometimes it feels impossible to find the right gift. If you’re racking your brain for ideas, it’s better to go with something more personal and thoughtful because you know they will value the gift. These gifts are often the most ethical Christmas gifts as a framed photo of a shared happy member is more likely to be treasured than to end up in landfill. You could also buy an experience together to add a memory to the mix. What is something personal that you could gift someone this Christmas?
The ultimate aim of Christmas is to enjoy time with your loved ones.
That’s worth remembering this when you feel the pressure to spend money this season. So consider adding these Christmas shopping hacks to your basket this holiday season to save money on your Christmas gifts.