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The Christmas decorations are in full swing in the shops and it won’t be long before the tunes are blaring out too I imagine. This week I thought I would pull together my top tips to help reduce Christmas spending. After all, we want to enjoy the festive season but come out the other side on one financial piece!
Trim your gift list
Families tend to grow each year but you might find that your budget hasn’t grown at the same rate, if at all.
For the last few years we have done a Secret Santa for the adults in my husband’s family as he is one of four siblings and they are all married. It means we get one nice present and using the Draw Names Secret Santa website means no-one has to draw names out of the hat – its all done secretly online!
You’ll often find if you bring up the subject with family members, they were probably thinking the same thing so don’t be worried about having the conversation. It’s usually a relief to all.
Set a spending plan
It may sound a bit obvious but spending can go a bit haywire if you let yourself loose in the shops without a spending plan.
Look at how much you want to spend, and can afford to spend, in total over the Christmas period. Break this down across food, presents, Christmas parties etc.
Then go one step further and set a spending plan for each person on your newly trimmed Christmas list.
Take advantage of Amazon
I’m a huge Amazon fan at Christmas time for lots of reasons.
Firstly, no hitting the shops – I can shop from the comfort of my own home. Secondly, they have amazing Black Friday deals. Thirdly, if you have all the presents you are after in a watchlist, you’ll be notified when they are available at reduced prices.
If you aren’t an Amazon Prime member, you can get a 30 day free trial here which will net you free one day delivery.
Time it right to cover Black Friday (29 November 2019) and Cyber Monday (2 December 2019) and remember to cancel at the end of your free trial. You could do the bulk of your shopping easily and with no delivery charges.
Make sure you use cash back sites
If you do any online shopping at all over the Christmas period, make sure you use either Quidco or TopCashback for free money. I see it as a discount on my shopping that I just receive a little while after shopping rather than at the time.
*** Read my article on cashback sites here ***
Get a bargain with your Christmas tree
For the last couple of years, Ikea have sold real Christmas trees for £25 which come with a £20 no minimum spend voucher to spend in store. Bargain! Has anyone seen this deal yet this year?
Use those loyalty cards
If you’ve been collecting loyalty points at your favourite shops, now is a great time to cash in your points against your purchases. It means getting the things you want without forking out any cash.
I sit down with my Stocard app open and see what balance I have across all my loyalty accounts. I always use loyalty points built up over the year for a big food shop of treats.