When Christmas is just around the corner, it only means one thing–it’s that time of the year to buy gifts, put up decorations, and plan holiday getaways. But, considering the current state of the economy, using up all your Christmas budget will surely leave you stressed out instead of relaxed when January comes.
To ensure that you don’t blow your budget for the coming holidays, here are some tips to remember:
Know Your Christmas Budget
There is no way that you can stay under budget this Christmas if you don’t set a budget in the first place. So, before you go shopping for the holidays, make sure you decide first on how much you are willing and ready to spend this year. Consider every area of holiday shopping including decorations, gifts, food, and travel, and divide your budget for them accordingly.
Watch Out for Retail Tricks
Even if you are firmly set on your budget, overspending may still happen because of retail stores that are out to make you spend your money with them. Be wary of their tricks such as loyalty cards, decor pricing, incentives that will entice you to come back to the store, and more.
Reduce Your Convenience Expenses
The so-called “convenience” expenses are some of the biggest budget-eaters during the holiday season. When your hands are full, it is easy to spend for convenience like ordering fast food, grabbing some pizza or burgers, and more.
Spending more time shopping can also result in many unnecessary purchases like smoothies, coffee, and pretzels. While these may seem minor at first, these can easily pile up and before you know, your Christmas budget is already out the window.
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Set Expectations Early On
If you have decided to stick to a smaller Christmas budget for gifts this year, make sure you set expectations as early as possible. Let your family and friends know the changes you will make to your gift-giving habits to prevent disappointments.
Limit Your Gifts to Yourself
While you deserve to pamper and reward yourself with gifts, there are times when it can go overboard that before you know it, your Christmas budget is already gone before you actually bought the things your need. Be sure to set how much your gifts to yourself will be and stick to it.
Find Ways to Make Travel Cheaper
Travel is among the biggest expenses during Christmas for some families. If it is part of the tradition, make sure you look for ways to make your trips cheaper. Pack light to avoid baggage fees, shop around for the best airline deals, research affordable hotels and accommodations, and more.
Track Your Expenses
If you really want to stay under budget this Christmas, don’t forget to track your daily expenses down to the last penny. Doing so will help you ensure that you really stick to your budget so you can enjoy the holidays with no financial worries.
Use these tips to have the best and most memorable Christmas!
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