I know there will be eye rolls at the mention of the word ‘Christmas’ but let’s be honest, it pays to be prepared for the most expensive time of year. Although I haven’t quite started shopping for the big day, I have started to think of ways that we can start to save pennies in preparation for the multitude of things that I know I will get sucked into buying. Every year I leave it all too late and it turns into a big credit card job. But, with this being the first year that Darcie will properly enjoy the Christmas spirit, I want to make sure we can enjoy it all and eliminate the financial stress. So here are some of the things I’ve either started doing or will be doing as we get closer to the festive season.
Write A List
At some point soon I am going to sit down and write a list of all the things we will need or want to buy for Christmas. I’m not just thinking of presents but things like decorations, food and clothes too. If I have a physical list to refer to then not only will it hopefully keep me on track but it will also serve as a reminder to save money on other things to prioritise the items on the list.
Like I said, I haven’t quite started shopping yet but I plan on being a lot more organised this year. I wish I’d been organised enough to put aside money each month at the beginning of the year, but it’s not too late to start. If we can buy or save bits for the next few months, it will certainly help to take the pressure off that November paycheck!
Take Advantage Of Sales
Every year I forget that Black Friday and Cyber Monday are even a thing and quite often I end up kicking myself that I didn’t wait to buy something in the sale. Research what big sales and discounts are on in the run up to Christmas and then refer to your list of things to buy and see where you can make some savings.
Get The Best Deals
There are all sorts of things to pay for around the Christmas season. Presents aside, I always want to do lots of lovely festive days out and Christmas activities too. There are lots of amazing websites you can use to find deals on all these types of things and I will certainly be using them to browse for ideas and find some bargains.
Use Your Loyalty Cards
I always save my Nectar Points throughout the year for the Christmas food shop and it’s such a nice feeling to be able to save that money when money is vanishing left, right and centre. Most big stores have some kind of loyalty card system now, so make the most of them and save money where you can. They often have exclusive deals for loyalty card holders around Christmas too!
Don’t Be Afraid To DIY
I LOVE a bit of DIY and Christmas provides endless excuses to get out the old glue gun and glitter. I know it can be hard to get much done around the children but get them involved and turn it into a fun family activity. If you don’t want to go all out with the homemade presents then why not just make some decorations yourself? You’ll save yourself some money and no one even has to know if it ends in disaster!
What do you do to ease the financial strain of Christmas?