If the thought of Christmas is causing you to panic as opposed to smile, you need to reconsider what Christmas means to you. Some people don’t like the festive period and that is their choice and prerogative. As long as what you or these people do doesn’t impact on other people’s enjoyment, there is no harm in this sort of action.
However, there are also a lot of people who love Christmas but who decide against celebrating it in any real manner because of the cost involved. If you want to make the most of this time of year but you are concerned about how much you’ll spend, it is crucial that you look to take control of the festive season. You can enjoy a debt free Christmas and these tips will provide you with some great ideas to really enjoy this time of the year.
Plan in advance to minimise surprises
One of the easiest ways you can take control of your finances in the run up to Christmas is to plan as much as you can. When you work out your budget and know who you need to buy for and what you need to buy, you’ll be a lot more confident about your finances at the festive period.
Of course, the cost of Christmas isn’t just about presents and it is vital that you factor in all of the different elements associated with this time of year. It is likely that you’ll go through a lot of food and drink at Christmas, so make sure that this part of your long term planning and budget.
There is likely to be a number of social events and gatherings that you attend at this time of year, so you need to set money aside for these. If you have a works night out or a catch-up with friends, there can be a lot of money involved. You may need to buy new clothes, you may have to pay for a taxi or book a hotel room and the cost of the evening or event itself can quickly add up.
Other things you need to think about for the festive period is tipping or giving gifts to people who help you throughout the year. It is easy to see why parents dread this time of year as there is now an expectation to give presents to teachers and if your kids are involved with extra-curricular activities, these could cost a lot too.
Throw in tips or Christmas gifts to bin-men, babysitters and a whole host of other people that look out for you and you suddenly find that the cost of Christmas adds up very quickly.
This is why when you plan in advance, you need to be honest and take everything into consideration. If you draw up a budget with just presents and perhaps some food and drink on the bill, you will come up short when it comes to surviving the festive period. If you don’t have enough budget for these items, you may find yourself taking a credit solution, and this is where things start to get difficult for yourself.
You can only do so much by planning ahead but when it comes to making the most of the festive season, the level of detail in your planning will have a big impact on how you celebrate this time of year.
Look for bargains
If you have a set budget for people, try and maximise what you get for your money. It can be easy to be swayed by deals and offers, and you shouldn’t go over what you intend to spend for each person, but by being savvy, there is an opportunity for you to make your money go further.
This is why you need to be active and scouring for the best deals. There are a number of sites that provide people with information about sales, offers and great deals. It makes sense to sign up for these sites because they can help you make more with your money, which is one of the keys to enjoying a fantastic festive period.
There is also a lot to be said for starting as soon as possible. Before the shops get caught up in the festive period drama and excitement, you have a chance to grab some great deals and give yourself the best chance of enjoying the festive period.
Andrew Reilly is a freelance writer with a focus on news stories and consumer interest articles. He has been writing professionally for 9 years but has been writing for as long as he can care to remember. When Andrew isn’t sat behind a laptop or researching a story, he will be found watching a gig or a game of football.