Ok, so we are only just going into the autumn but it’s never too late to start preparing for the Christmas season. For a lot of us, Christmas can be a difficult time of year as it puts a lot of financial strain on us. The pressure to buy gifts can take its toll on our monthly budgets and before we know it, we are in a stressful financial situation.
Luckily, there are plenty of ways that you can save your money in preparation for the busy Christmas period. Let’s discuss them in more detail.
Set A Budget When Considering How to Save At Christmas
It can be easy to start buying the odd present here and there but before you know it you’ve got a cupboard full of gifts and you’ve massively overspent. To avoid this, it is crucial that you set yourself a budget. Although it is a simple tip it is one that so many of us fail to do. Budgeting is not always easy, especially if it is your first time. However, a good place to start is by looking at your monthly income. Try to plan how much money you can set aside for presents and then split this between the members of your family who you buy gifts for.
If you need advice on how to set a budget at Christmas then luckily there is plenty online. A quick Google search can help set you off in the right direction so you can say goodbye to money-saving woes or you can check out my money-saving challenge I designed a few years ago.
Shop The Sales
It is never too early to start buying gifts. Sales are a great thing, and the majority of shops will have them crop up all year round. Sales can help you get your hands on some major bargains. However, there is one small downside to this tip. Depending on how early you purchase gifts in the sale, don’t forget you have them! This will only lead to you spending more money down the line so it can be a good idea to write down what gifts you have so you don’t forget.
Earn Money from Referral Schemes
What if we told you there was a way to earn money from the comfort of your home. Refer and earn schemes are a great way for you to earn cash online and if you’ve never heard of them now is the time to learn all about them. If you have a certain provider for your phone or electric bill, then they may have a referral scheme. If you refer a friend to use the same service, you can get a small lump sum of cash in return.
Take a look at Lebara’s refer a friend scheme. Through their website, they teach you how to refer and earn without even needing to leave your own home. You could earn up to £50 per referral, which could certainly go towards your Christmas fund. Take time to look into your providers to see what they may be able to offer you. You could be missing out on some extra cash!
Look For Online Discount Codes
As well as sales, discount codes are a great money-saving hack. If you buy most of your gifts online, always have a quick Google search before you make a purchase and try to look for any discount codes that may be lurking around. Doing this could save you a tonne of money and you may be surprised at just how many you can find.
There are plenty of discount code websites that you can explore, and they are mostly free to use. Social media is also a great place to look for any promotional offers. For example, on Twitter, if you type the shop name followed by “discount code” into the search bar you will often find tweets from people sharing discount codes that they have found. It takes time but the result can certainly be worth it.
Replace Family Gifts for A “Secret Santa”
Sometimes, your family can feel like it’s growing by the second. You have siblings, grandparents, nieces, cousins, uncles, the list goes on! Instead of committing to buying each family member a gift, it can be a clever idea to have a “Secret Santa” instead. That way, you only have to buy a gift for that one person, and everyone gets a gift that they will enjoy.
If you haven’t heard of “Secret Santa” then the idea is that you put all your family members names into a hat. Each member pulls a name from the hat, and they have to buy a gift for that person. Not only is it a great money-saving tip, but it is also a great way to have some family fun in the process.
Track Your Spending
Probably one of the most crucial aspects of how to save money at Christmas is to track your spending. If you keep buying the odd gift here and there, soon the price will start to add up and before you know it you’ve lost track of your budget and you’ve run out of money for the Christmas Day turkey. You can track your spending in plenty of ways. Keeping hold of receipts is essential. You can either write down your outgoings in a notebook or you can even use the notes app on your smartphone.
If you are really tech-savvy, then you can even explore money tracking apps. Most of them are free to use and you can log your spending all in one place so you can make sure that you aren’t overspending throughout the coming months.
How to save money at Christmas – To Summarise
Christmas does not have to be a stressful time. With the help of these money-saving tips above on how to save money at Christmas, you will be well on your way to enjoying the festive season, stress-free. With a clear budget in place and some discount delving, you will be able to make this Christmas one to remember. It is never too early to start planning to help take away some of the stress and don’t forget to explore those sales!