The 12 Saves of Christmas

 

Christmas is coming, and we all know it’s going to be a little bit different this year.But no matter how much has changed in 2020, you don’t have to spend a lot of money to make Christmas special. So, here are 12 Saves of Christmas to help you celebrate with the people you love without losing control of your budget.

1. Hunt for the best deal

Don’t buy anything, from presents to food and drink, until you’re sure you’re getting the best deal. Use a cost comparison site to check the prices of gifts on your list. Make the most of offers and online discount codes, and you’ll be surprised how much you can save.

2. Can the cards

We all love to hear from loved ones at Christmas, especially this year when we’ve spent so much time apart. But the cost of cards and postage soon adds up - why not send an eCard with a festive family photo instead? If you can find eCards which are free to send, you'll notice the saving.

3. Save with Secret Santa

You may feel obliged to buy gifts for extended family, colleagues or the children of friends. Ask each group to join a Secret Santa instead - you’ll spend less, and your friends and family will be glad the pressure is off too.

4. It’s a wrap for wrapping paper

Glossy giftwrap is expensive and far from environmentally friendly. Embrace the eco approach and use sheets of tissue paper or brown parcel paper, secured with string - you’ll also save on sticky tape! And make sure you re-use gift bags too.

5. Spread the cost with subscriptions

Subscriptions make great presents as the recipient gets the joy of their gift, such as a magazine or monthly seed delivery, across the year. It means you can spread the cost too, rather than paying up front.

6. Know your limits

Set a limit on the number of presents you buy, and don’t get carried away with stocking fillers, which soon add up. Some people use the four-present rhyme for children - something they want, something they need, something to wear and something to read.

7. Wise up to retailers’ tricks

From the layout of stores and multipack “deals” to one-click checkouts online, retailers have plenty of tactics to tempt us into spending more than we planned. Before you commit to anything, take some time out and ask yourself whether it is something you really need.

8. Make new traditions

Some of your usual seasonal treats could be off the festive calendar this year, from pantos to pub gatherings. Why not start new traditions that won’t cost a penny extra, such as a Christmas movie marathon or a festive forest walk.

9. War on waste

They are synonymous with Christmas dinner but how many people truly like sprouts? If you are buying traditional festive foods, such as Christmas pudding and sherry for the sake of it, then cross them off your list and you won’t end up throwing food – and money – in the bin.

10. Set a spending limit for gifts

Sometimes, it’s best to be honest with your family about your financial concerns. That way, you can agree collectively to a gift spending limit per person.

11. Don’t fall into the posh nosh trap

We all like to treat ourselves at Christmas, and are often tempted to stock up on posh food and drink from supermarkets premium range. But will your family really notice the difference? You can make big savings by sticking to your usual favourites.

12. Charity begins at home

Set a family charity shop challenge where you all substitute one gift for a charity shop purchase. It’s better for the environment, helps struggling good causes and you could even have a prize for the best one.

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