6 Ways to Save Money on Holiday Gifts
It’s really easy to get wrapped in the festive, feel-good moments of holiday shopping. Special deals and BOGO offers appear, you start making a list for people you’d like to buy for, and before you know it you’ve overspent and wondered how money could be spent so fast. As someone who has charged many holiday gifts to a credit card and regretted it later, I’d like to share with you some tips and tricks I’ve learned along the way to encourage smart spending and still save money during the last two months of the year.
1. Start saving early.
For my shopping habits and for the amount of people I typically buy gifts, it makes more sense for me to start saving early. Whether it’s $5 a paycheck or $50 a month, having cash set aside for holiday spending is always a good idea.
Did you know your credit union offers a holiday savings account? It allows you to make deposits with automatic deductions from your paycheck or other CU accounts. It’s never too late to start savings habits for this year or get a jump start on 2018!
2. Budget for each person on your list.
This is the hardest part for me to abide because we have little ones in the family and I want to get them everything on their list. Great ways to teach youth in your family the importance of a dollar. Plus, creating a budget encourages finding the perfect gift for each family member and can encourage creative gift-giving.
3. Use your earned rewards or cashback to supplement holiday shopping.
If you have been earning points, rewards, or cashback all year, now is a great time to redeem these perks tied with your credit card. The credit union offers a Visa Signature ® with 1.5% cash back on every purchase and a Platinum Points Visa, which offers one point for every dollar in purchases. The best part? There’s no annual fee.
4. Encourage White Elephant or Secret Santa gifts for adults.
Avoid the stress of buying for everyone at your holiday party. Party games like White Elephant encourage limited gift purchasing—and you can add a theme to it for extra fun! One side of my family does Secret Santa for the adults and we pull names at Thanksgiving. It makes it easier to buy for a larger family and you get to surprise each other on Christmas Day.
5. Take advantage of Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
I ask for Christmas lists or gift ideas as early as October so I can save big on these days of special deals. Make a list and stick to it in order to avoid overspending.
6. Know when to stop shopping.
This is another challenge most people experience. You’ve successfully stuck to your budget, shopped for everyone on your holiday gift-giving list, and there’s still days remaining before December 25th arrives. Give yourself a pat on the back and distract yourself with more time to wrap those presents and create handmade holiday cards!
We’ve all had those “last minute” holiday shopping moments. What’s your holiday shopping story? Share them with us in the comments section!