With the holidays fast approaching one theme I’ve noticed among friends and family is everywhere people are trying to save money and not spend so much this holiday season. Why go into debt during the holidays buying gifts for people. It seems silly, don’t you think? There are ways you can save and spend at the same time in order to make this holiday season the best you’ve ever had.
Did You Know?
In a recent survey conducted by Mobilcity: One in five Canadians identify themselves as ‘binge shoppers’ and say their holiday shopping is a whirlwind activity that packs a lot into a short period of time. Of these ‘binge shoppers’, 71 per cent say they tend to spend more than they should.
70 per cent are not planning on using a variety of apps/features on their mobile phone to help with their holiday shopping, even amidst the growing number of apps that do everything from scanning product barcodes to locating retailers with the best prices to organizing store loyalty cards.
Tips for saving money over the holidays and into the New Year!
- Set a price budget for buying — Setting up a budget for gifts you want to purchase can go a long way into helping you save money when purchasing items.
- Use your mobile phone and apps — Your mobile phone can be a handy side-kick while shopping this year. There are so many apps that can help aid your shopping experience and help you cut costs while making your purchases.
- Gear for the Extras — When budgeting people always forget the little extras that often crop up. So make sure you gear for things like Christmas cards, stamps, shipping, packaging and other odds and ends.
- Make a list and check it twice! — Santa does it, so should you. Make a list of everyone you are buying for and gift ideas you have in mind for each person.
- Leave the credit cards at home — Paying cash for things will limit your budget and keep you from over-spending during your holiday shopping.
- Buy practical — We often purchase extravagant gifts or expensive gifts and over-look the practical every day items people need. Things like towels, shower curtain sets, dish cloths, coffee makers.
- Add yourself to the list — This might seem silly but to stop impulse buying, add yourself and a few items you want to your holiday list and then get them for yourself. This will stop you from buying on impulse.
Gearing for the New Year!
To help save you money for the New Year coming, and the next holiday season here are some great tips you can take advantage of.
- Buy early — Purchase your gifts earlier and keep them in a bin in your closet. I often will buy things on sale, toys on clearance and just stock them away. This is not only great for the holidays but for birthday parties for kids, or an office party gift you might need at hand.
- Set up a holiday bank account — Each month set aside ten to twenty dollars if you can and stock it away in your holiday account. By the time the holidays arrive you are part way there for saving.
- Buy Online — Online shopping can be less expensive than going into the stores to buy the items you want. Online shopping often provides free shipping for certain items purchased. So look for the deals and shop all year long!
Angela Self, a personal finance expert and one of the five money-smart women known as the Smart Cookies, says, “ We’ve all been guilty of spending too much or making impulsive purchases during the holidays only to regret it later, much like having one too many drinks. While most hangovers can be cured with rest and hydration, the ‘holiday shopping hangover’ can only be cured and even prevented through smart planning and spending.”
What ways do you or your family save money over the holidays?
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