I can hear your heart beating wildly already…you have just realised how close Christmas really is and once again haven’t managed to put any money away to help you through the spending season. Never fear, help is here!
Whether you have the money or not, it is always a little more fun when you attempt to create Christmas on shoestring budget as it really makes you stop and think about the gifts you buy and the food you eat etc.
Here are our top 7 tips for to keep the cost of Christmas down so you don’t have to struggle through 2016 with the debt of Christmas past:
Do not underestimate the gift giving power of homemade gifts. In a world where we purchase everything pre-packaged and ready-made, a homemade gift really can brighten up someone’s day because you created it just for them.
Purchase wrapping in advance.
It might be a little late for this year but start now for next year. At the end of year sales be sure to stock up on Christmas wrapping paper, ribbons and bows etc. They end up being sold at about 1/10th of the price in the weeks after Christmas and you can buy all you need for the full cost of one roll of expensive paper.
Grab a bargain.
Once again, hit the after Christmas sales. Don’t go in the first few days, go towards the end of the first week after Christmas or first week in the New Year. The markdowns are incredible and you can stock up on generic gifts that can be used not only for next Christmas but also birthdays during the year.
Share the load.
If Christmas is at your place this year then make sure it’s a “bring a plate” Christmas so that everyone that attends is bringing something towards the Christmas dinner. It can cost a small fortune to feed a large family gathering so be sure to share the load with those will be eating the dinner!
Kris Kringle/Secret Santa –
It’s time! If guests are over 18 then it’s time to put in place a Kris Kringle/Secret Santa for the adults instead of buying gifts for everyone. Set a generous amount per gift, say $100 and everyone has to stick to that limit. Draw names out of a hat so you don’t know who everyone will be buying for and then have fun finding the best present you can for the $$ value you have set. This can get really creative the smaller the dollar amount.
Pre-purchase major food items.
If you love a roast at Christmas time then look at buying your meat a few months before Christmas and keeping it in the freezer. The cost of roast meats skyrockets around Christmas so look out for it on special in your local supermarket and then grab yourself a bargain. This not only saves you money but spreads the financial burden over a few months rather than all in one week.
Plan your meals.
Think ahead about what you will be eating not only on Christmas Day but Christmas Eve, Boxing Day and New Year. Work out a menu that will cater for all events and also allow you to maximise leftovers for other meals. No need to eat Christmas ham for weeks on end when you can create other amazing dishes utilising the ham.
What are your Christmas on a shoestring tips? Comment below