Everyone loves the holiday season and wants to spoil their loved ones, but big holiday spending can put a strain on anybody’s wallet. For the sake of your seasonal cheer and that of your friends and family, it is best to plan ahead for a stress-free and joyful celebration. These are Kōura’s tips and tricks to help you get through the holiday season stress free!
1. Start Early
Begin your Christmas budgeting and saving well in advance. Planning ahead allows you to spread your expenses over several weeks or months, reducing the financial burden during the holiday season.
Keep an eye out for sales. Black Friday and Cyber Monday can be excellent opportunities to snag deals on gifts and decorations. Op Shops can also be a great place to buy a gift on the cheap.
3. Set a Budget
Determine how much you can afford to spend on Christmas without compromising your financial stability. Consider your income, existing obligations, and savings goals to set a realistic budget.
4. Make a list
Create a list of all your holiday expenses, including gifts, decorations, wrapping paper, food, and travel. Checking your list will help you ensure that every aspect of your celebration is accounted for.
Identify the most important elements of your Christmas celebration and dedicate your budget to those areas. This ensures that you focus on what truly matters to you and your loved ones.
6. Set Gift Limits
Set realistic spending limits for each person on your gift list and speak to your loved ones about gift limits. This ensures everyone contributes fairly and prevents you from exceeding your budget.
7. DIY Decor
Get creative and consider making your own decorations and gifts. This not only adds a personal touch to your celebration but also helps you save money.
8. No Afterpay
You don’t want to leave a big balance on your credit card or on after pay. If you can’t pay it back within the month, you’ll be paying far more in the long run.
9. Secret Santa
Instead of buying gifts for everyone, organize a gift exchange among family and friends. This can significantly reduce the number of gifts you need to purchase.
10. Potluck Meal
If you're hosting a holiday meal, consider making it a potluck where everyone contributes a dish or drinks. This eases the financial burden on the host and adds variety to the meal.
11. Talk It Out
If finances are tight, communicate openly with friends and family about your budget constraints. Suggest alternative ways to celebrate that don't involve expensive gifts or activities.
Take a moment to sit down and reflect on your finances for the last year. What went well this year and what didn't? What lessons will you be applying to your finances in the new year?
While the holidays can be an expensive time of year, there are many ways to prepare: knowing your budget, managing social expectations, sharing the load, and setting money aside early are all great ways to avoid stress around the holiday season. Follow these 12 tips to save yourself from a financial hangover come January.