I know; it’s wayyyy to early to be thinking about Christmas, but let me tell you, the Christmas music will be blasting in the stores before we know it. I’m sure some stores have already jumped the gun and created a Christmas aisle, but we won’t think about that just yet.
By the way, I agree with you that it’s too early to sing about Rudolph, but it’s definitely not too early to start saving for the holiday. People spend a ton of money on Christmas from the decorations to the gifts to the tree. It’s a great time to spread the love around, but it’s not worth going into debt, that’s for sure. So, here are some tips on how to save for the holiday without going over budget.
1. Make A List
You don’t have to check it twice. Well, you can if you want, but essentially the list should just include everyone you want to buy gifts for with estimates of how much it will cost. Once you have a ballpark figure in mind, you will know how much you’ll have to save.
2. Divide It Up
Take the number you just added up and divide it by the number of months until Christmas. Now you know how much you have to save every month in order to comfortably afford something for everyone on your list.
3. Use Savings Programs
I like to use a high yield savings account to save for big ticket items. You can invest in one that earns 1% while you add to it over the coming months. You can also purchase toys at big stores and put them on layaway, making payments throughout the rest of the year.
4. Make Gifts
If you find that you’re over budget, take a look at your list again and see how many people would be happy with a smaller gift. Remember, you can always bake something or make something for much cheaper than buying it from the store. Most people would be so happy with a nice meal or warm cookies!
5. Don’t Forget to Give
The best thing about the holidays is that it’s a time for giving to others. So, even though you are saving up to buy your family members fun gifts, don’t forget to also save a little to give to those in need. Nothing feels better than donating to a young family, providing Christmas dinner for the hungry, or volunteering your time.
Ultimately, even though it’s early in the year, we can still get into the holiday spirit and make sure this one is the best one ever. One way to do that is to make sure you are not stressed out about finances or worried about how you will afford Christmas gifts. Start early, plan accordingly, manage expectations, and think outside the box. All of those thing will help you to have an incredibly smooth and memorable holiday.
Have you started saving for Christmas yet?
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@MoneySideOfLife Thanks for the tweet! :)
@AllFinance been saving since the first of the year. No need for last minute savings rush
always love this topic. I wrote a blog article last December titled “Changing the Day
of Christmas?” because we always seem to omit saving for Christmas
gifts, holiday parties, etc. The date has never changed and never will, so we
need to plan for it in advance! It’s tough, though, with today’s hectic life
full of kid’s parties, vacations, work, etc. But this is definitely one we
shouldn't miss as it makes us eventually resent the best time of the year. This
is a time we should be celebrating for a reason greater than gifts and parties!
Not resenting because we know it will mean mounting credit card debt.
Agreed. If you haven't already started saving, then you really should. If you pay monthly, then there's only 3 pay checks left to save. If bi-monthly, only 6.
Thanks for the tips.
The holidays are just around the corner and I haven't even started to save, let alone do some early gift shopping before the Christmas craze begins. Couldn't agree more Cat, its time to pony up on the holidays savings and plan early if am to make it a joyful happy and giving time!
@AllFinance No problem! Keep all that good stuff coming!
@TheRule8618 That's good. If we could all be so disciplined... :)
@TheRule8618 We’re right there with you, Saver; we’re saving for a trip to space. It’s going to take a while.