2020 has been quite the year, but the countdown to Christmas is officially on. And this year, we’re getting excited early, ready to make this one the best Christmas yet.
And with #100DaysTillChristmas, it’s time to start planning everything from Christmas decorations and Christmas dinner, to festive films and our favourite board games. There’s plenty to love about the most wonderful time of the year.
For those who need a bit more encouragement, getting in the festive spirit a little bit earlier can help make the preparations easier, and even save some money in the process. So, if you’re looking for ways to keep your Christmas costs down, here are 17 simple money saving tips:
If you’re going to try your hand at DIY gifts or decorations this year, consider making an event of it. Set up a video call with your friends to make your own festive wreaths, or plan an afternoon making Christmas cards with the kids.
Secret Santa is a simple and fun way to cut back on the number of presents you have to buy. If you’ve got a big family, or a big group of friends, suggest drawing names out of a hat, setting a spending limit and then surprising each other with your gifts.
You’ve got #100DaysTillChristmas, plenty of time to raise some extra festive funds. You could sell things on online marketplaces like eBay or Facebook Marketplace. If you haven’t used something since last Christmas, you probably won’t miss it.
Rather than splashing out on a new Christmas tree each year, consider making the switch to an artificial one. Not only will it last for years and years, saving you money, you won’t have to worry about sweeping up any needles that drop from a real tree!
Don’t leave your food shopping till the last minute. Not only will things cost more, stocks might be lower too – and you don’t want to miss out! Start picking up your favourite festive treats earlier in the year and stock up your freezer, or buy long-life products like mince pies, chocolate and Christmas pudding and store it in your cupboards.
Having a designated ‘Christmas cupboard’ in the house means whenever you spot a great deal throughout the year, you can pick up potential presents and keep them tucked away. Then when it comes to Christmas, you might be surprised at how many gifts you already have sorted!
If you like shopping online, sign up to one of the various cashback sites, and start earning some money on the things you buy in the run up to Christmas.
If you’re planning on sending post, whether that’s gifts or just Christmas cards, try to send them early if possible. Not only does Royal Mail set deadlines for when things need to be posted to arrive on time, last minute post costs a lot more.
If you’re planning on travelling to see family or friends over Christmas, book your train tickets as far in advance as possible to get the best deals. You can usually buy tickets up to 12 weeks in advance, and with #100DaysTillChristmas, that’s right about now.
It’s easy to get carried away when it comes to Christmas, but nobody wants to put themselves in debt. Before you start preparing for the holidays, try to work out a budget. Once you have this, it’s easier to plan ahead, rather than planning first and then worrying about how you’ll pay for everything.
Keeping track of everything you need to get, and everything you already have, can make the shopping process much smoother and less stressful.
Instead of leaving things till the last minute and trying to fund your entire Christmas from your December pay cheque, start shopping earlier, ticking off a few items each month to spread the cost.
You’d be surprised at how quickly your savings can add up with just a little bit each month. With #100DaysTillChristmas, even if you put away £20 each week between now and Christmas, you’d have saved an extra £280 for the big day.
If saving doesn’t come naturally to you, don’t worry. Take a look at what you spend on a weekly basis and have a think about what you could cut out. It might be your morning coffee or lunchtime meal deal – skipping these little luxuries can help boost your festive savings.
Why not let your creative-side loose and try making your own gifts this Christmas? This could be anything from personalised artwork to tasty, edible treats. Homemade gifts are a really thoughtful way to show how well you know somebody too.