Close-up of Christmas Decoration Hanging on Tree

Christmas Is Coming! 26 Tips To Save Money

Assorted Gift Boxes on Brown Wooden Floor Surface

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Christmas can be a great time of year, but it can also be expensive!! It's very easy to spend far too much if you're not keeping a close eye on things. If you're looking to – or needing to save money during the holiday season, I've got 26 Christmas tips to help you stay on budget!

Close-up of Christmas Decoration Hanging on Tree

Christmas Savings Tips

Create a Budget: Stay with me here! Having a budget doesn't have to feel like a constricting, limiting thing. Deciding how much to spend on each person can make it freeing to know that you can choose anything within a certain range, and it's not going to be something you have to pay off for the next 6 months.

Make a List: Write down everyone you need to buy gifts for. Consider carrying a small notebook, or a few index cards in your wallet with the names, dollar amounts and ideas, so where ever you are shopping, you can check your list.

Prioritize Gifts: Allocate more money to close family and friends and consider smaller, thoughtful gifts for others. Or, ask close family to pick names and then you have the number of people in your immediate family to buy for instead of siblings, nieces and nephews and grandparents. If someone really wants to buy a specific person an additional gift, they can, but it can greatly reduce the expense and time spent shopping, for everyone involved.

Flat lay of Christmas deer near tubes placed near plate with brushes and mixture of colorful paints

DIY Gifts: Consider making homemade Christmas gifts like baked goods, crafts, or personalized photo gifts. Make sure to be mindful if someone has an allergy, or aversion to certain foods.

Secret Santa: Suggest a Secret Santa or Christmas gift exchange with friends to reduce the number of gifts you need to buy. Another idea is to agree to have a group dinner where you all get together at someones house or a restaurant and forgo the gifts.

Shop Early: Start your holiday shopping early to take advantage of sales and avoid last-minute splurges because you can't find the right gift for someone who is hard to buy for.

Use Coupons and Discounts: Look for coupons, discounts, and cashback offers when shopping online or in stores. Rakuten is my favorite for cashback offers when shopping. They often have discount codes and you they issue cashback checks every quarter. Right now when you spend $40 at any of the stores rakuten supports, you'll get $40.00 cash back! It's an AMAZING deal for holiday shopping!

Shopping Cart Next to a Laptop

Price Comparison: Use price-comparison websites and apps to find the best deals on gifts.

Set Gift Limits: Set a spending limit for Christmas gifts with family and friends to avoid overspending.

Shop Online: Online shopping can often offer better deals and more options. Often during the holidays they offer free shipping with purchases also. Befrugal is another cashback site that I use. They are currently running a special where you get $10 cash back after you've earned $10. They also will scan your order for the best coupon they can find and have often found me better deals then the one the company is showing! I have both Rakuten and Befrugal saved on my computer and compare their cashback rates to see which one I want to use each time I shop.

A Man Delivering Packages

Take Advantage of Sales Events: Look for Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and other holiday sales events. Make sure you are checking out our FREE facebook page where I will post ONLY the best deals, and any requests from you!

Loyalty Programs: Use loyalty cards and rewards programs to earn discounts and cashback on purchases. Every year Walgreens has buy 2 get 2 free kids toys if you have their rewards card. It's FREE too!

Buy in Bulk: Consider buying items in bulk for multiple people, such as stocking stuffers or small gifts for coworkers.

Handmade Decorations: Create your own holiday decorations to save on costs. Enlist the kids or put up all of those great Christmas cards you get every year.

Traditional Christmas biscuits with icing

Regifting: If you receive gifts you don't need, consider regifting them to someone else – but make sure you remember who gave it to you to begin with! EEK!

Limit Decor Spending: Reuse last year's Christmas decorations and avoid buying new ones. Set aside 10.00 each year for buying new decorations at deep discounts when stores are clearing out stock after the holidays.

Potluck Meals: If you're hosting a holiday gathering, ask guests to bring a dish, potluck style. If you're afraid you're going to end up with 8 trays of cookies and no side dishes, assign people a category, or suggest they make one of their specialties.

Cut Down on Wrapping: Use reusable gift bags, fabric, or newspaper for wrapping instead of expensive paper. We have a drawer filled with various sizes of gift bags and tissue paper, both plain and for specific occasions. Over the years, this has saved us TONS of money!

 Love Paper Bags With Sale Text

Avoid Impulse Buying: Stick to your shopping list and avoid making impulsive purchases. I've found this is so much easier to do if I shop online. I can always check my cart and remove things that aren't quite the right thing and I don't have to worry about asking the cashier to remove something if I go over my budget.

Limit Travel Costs: If you're traveling, book tickets and accommodations in advance to get better prices. We've found the week between Christmas and New Years is a fabulous time to vacation at hotels because they are empty due to less corporate travel and no conventions.

Homemade Cards: Make your own holiday cards instead of buying them. If you have children, enlist them to make them, for a more personal touch. Drop off a few at the local nursing home or veterans center also!

Pan of mexican chicken and rice casserole

Plan Meals in Advance: Create a meal plan for the holiday season, or even the week of holidays, to avoid excessive last minute out to eat food expenses. Consider easy meals that can last for a few days like chili, spaghetti, or Laura, over at Day By Day In Our World, has an amazing mexican chicken and rice casserole that can be mixed up one day and frozen for later.

Gift Experiences: Consider giving the gift of experiences like free concert tickets, an at home spa day, or offer to cook a meal as a gift. Grandparents and people that aren't able to get out much would cherish this gift SO much more than another blanket. The gift of time with a loved one is valued so highly.

Secret Ingredient Substitutions: Use cheaper alternatives in holiday recipes without compromising taste. Opt for the store brand if your treats are going to be covered in sugar and chocolate. Chances are no one will tell the difference.

A Mother and Daughters Applying Face Cream

Set Up a White Elephant Gift Exchange: Instead of buying gifts for a big group, set up a white elephant exchange where you just bring an item that would be a horrible gift. You could even vote for the “best” worst gift.

Keep Track of Spending: Use a spreadsheet or budgeting app to keep track of your holiday expenses in real-time.

Remember your financial goals: No one wants you to go in debt, to buy them a gift. Grab my FREE goal tracker and write down your financial goals for the holidays.

Flatlay Photography Of Gift And Baubles

Plan for next year: We have a sinking fund for birthday and holidays. Every month, a certain amount gets transferred into that account automatically. When we need to purchase gifts during the year at at Christmas, we know the money is already there. Consider a side gig to help fund those extra expenses.

Remember, the holidays are about spending time with loved ones, not just about spending money. By planning ahead and being mindful of your expenses, you can enjoy a festive and frugal Christmas season.

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