We all know that Christmas is one of the most expensive time of the year! Unfortunately many people finance Christmas and pay for it all year long, but there are smart ways to save this holiday season.
Five Savvy Christmas Shopping Tips
1. Follow Santa’s Advice
Make a list and check it twice. Making a list of people and the amount of money you plan to spend on them will help you stay on budget. Having a list of the items you intend to buy and keeping track of what you have purchased will help keep you organized as well. I actually do this all year-long. Whenever I find something on clearance (usually clothing and toys) I will pick it up and stash it until it is needed for either Christmas or birthday.
2. Start Early
Don’t wait until December to start thinking about your Christmas list. Keep your eyes open for good deals all year-long. You never know when you might find “the perfect gift” for someone special on your list. Not to mention the best price on an item may be in June and not December.
The week after Christmas when things are marked down 50%-75% I will try to get a jump-start on next year. Two years ago I was able to score lovely winter themed lap blankets for my grandmother’s and my mother-in-law. They were originally priced at $17.99 and by t he time I purchased them, they were marked down to just $5.00 each! I took them home, warped them right away, and stuck them in a safe place. The next year, their gifts were already ready to stick under the Christmas tree. All I had to do was put on the bow.
3. Be a Savvy Internet Shopper
In recent years Black Friday has given way to Cyber Monday. More and more people (including myself) are turning to the internet for their Christmas shopping. With the convince of one stop shopping and single click checkout it’s tempting to buy all you need at one web store. However, spending a little time to research the best price for the intended gift can save you quite a bit of money in the end.
To help you make sure you are getting the best deal possible, consider using price comparison website like Pricegrabber and NexTag. These types of sites compare prices across the web for your item. These sites are especially helpful when trying to compare expensive items like electronics, and small appliances, think kitchen aid stand mixer.
Shopping through websites like Swagbucks, My Points or Inbox Dollars can earn you additional points, Swagbucks, or cash on the items you purchase. This can add up to big savings especially if you plan to buy expensive items.
4. Homemade Christmas
If your crafty, even just a little, you could avoid the crazy holiday crowds altogether. You could bake Christmas cookies, or other festive treats, knit a hat, scarf or gloves. You could also make homemade jam, jelly, pickles, or apple sauce. If you need a little guidance, there are thousands of free tutorials online to show you how to do just about anything.
5. Group Gift/ Family Gift/Couple Gift
Purchasing a group, family or couples gift can often be less expensive than purchasing individual gifts. In fact, one of the best Christmas gifts I had been given in recent years was a “Date Night In” gift basket from my brother and his wife. Included in the gift basket was a box of popcorn, two DVD’s, a package of Twizzlers, and two 20 oz bottles of soda. Our oldest son was only 4 months old at the time and as any parent knows getting those nights out become a rare thing once the little one arrives. So having a date without having to go out was a wonderful gift for us.
What are your favorite ways to save on holiday shopping? Do you have any tips that has saved you money in the past? If so, please share them, we would love to hear all about it!
DON’T MISS OUT ON ANY OF MY GREAT TIPS TO HELP YOUR FAMILY
SAVE MONEY, HAVE FRUGAL FUN AND ENJOY LIFE!
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