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5 Easy Ways to Stick to your Christmas Budget

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Christmas Budget

Planning in advance not working for you? We show you how to cut the costs of THIS Christmas! 

Are you hopeless at homemade gifts? No time to shop around for the best deals? Never did get around to saving a bit each week for the whole year? If the usual Christmas budgeting advice isn’t hitting the mark, then this is the place for you. We’ve nailed down 5 tips for reducing your Christmas costs THIS year.

It’s best to plan ahead for an event like Christmas. Even if you’ve left it late in the day you can still sit down to plan your Christmas budget. But, first things first, take a look at our tips for cutting your Christmas costs.

1. Trim your gift list

Has your gift list got everyone from your third-cousin-twice-removed to the kid’s teacher from 3 years ago? Then you could probably afford to trim your list down a bit.

Around 4 out of 5 people say they get presents they don’t want or need at Christmas. Stop wasting your money! How about doing a Secret Santa? A Christmas staple in offices across the nation. But, why not have one between your family members and another amongst your group of friends? Most people will be more than happy to reduce their own growing lists!

2. Downsize

Hate eating Christmas leftovers right up ‘til New Year? Then here’s a novel idea, buy less food! So many people waste money by buying the biggest, baddest turkey they can find. 

A turkey joint can feed a family of 4-5. Having the in-laws round? Upgrade to a crown that’ll serve around 10-15. If you’re having even more over for Christmas dinner (or you really, really love leftovers) then get a full-size turkey to feast on.

3. Christmas List Rules

Are you worrying about the size of your children's Christmas lists this year? We all want to make our kids happy at Christmas. Setting out some realistic expectations beforehand is as good for them as it is for your budget.

Write down some Christmas List Rules that are fair and easy to understand. This can be as practical or frivolous as your Christmas budget allows. Set out some guidelines, such as the old adage ‘Something you want, something you need, something to wear and something to read’. It could be that you set a limit of 5 requests. Or specify only one piece of tech, for example.

Children usually respond well to guidelines and you’ll end up with a list that’s much more realistic. So, there’ll be no disappointments on the big day.

4. No Cards

This is another one your friends and family will thank you for! Buying and sending cards is a rather unnecessary Christmas cost. Especially for people you see all the time! Twenty-four first-class stamps will set you back more than £15. Add on the cost of a couple of boxes of cards and you’ve blown over £20.

We suggest emailing your Christmas wishes around to your friends and family. Attaching a few holiday pics of the family is a nice touch. If abandoning the tradition is making you feel a bit of a Scrooge, why not donate 50% of your usual Christmas card costs to charity? You still save money and your chosen charity benefits at Christmas.

5. Invite Your Friends Over

You might be wondering how this one will help your budget. A meal out here, a few drinks there. Christmas meet-ups with friends and family you might not see on Christmas Day can add up. Save the unnecessary expense and have your friends visit you at home. And all for the price of a bottle of wine and some mince pies instead.

Now you’ve got a full set of money saving tips, you should be ready to face the holidays with gusto! 

Warning: Late repayment can cause you serious money problems. For help, go to moneyadviceservice.org.uk. Representative example: APR 1270% if borrowing £400 for 4 months. Interest rate: 292% p.a. (fixed). Total amount repayable: £665.48 by four instalments of £166.37. Maximum representative APR: 1604% if full loan repaid after 7 days.