7 Tips for Doing It All While Staying on a Budget This Xmas

09 December 2020

7 Tips for Doing It All While Staying on a Budget This Christmas

As we happily say goodbye to 2020 (BTW, 2020, don't let the door hit you on the way out!), it's natural to want to let our hair down a bit. Indulging in some retail therapy, doing something nice for friends and family we haven't been able to see as much as we would have liked this year, making up for some of the lost time that went down the 2020 plug hole, etc.

If these are the sorts of things you feel like you want to do, we're with you! If there was ever a Christmas to relax and have fun, it is this one.

It's important we don't go completely crazy, though. Yeah, we know, sigh! But here's the thing – you can have a fantastic and memorable end of the year while staying on a budget this Christmas. 

Instead of not doing things, you can do things smarter. 

There needs to be common sense and a bit of self-control, but it can be done. It's not that hard, either. Plus, you'll have more in your pocket once Christmas is a memory on your Facebook feed, and you are enjoying the rest of the glorious Kiwi summer.

To help, we've put together a list that will show you how to stay on budget for Christmas while still enjoying the festive season the way you want to.

On with the tips!

  1. Make a Budget

Set yourself a realistic budget to cover all the extras you will need to buy over the Christmas period. This includes presents, secret Santa gifts, food, drink, and anything else you usually spend money on at Christmas. Don’t forget to budget for any indoor or outdoor Christmas decorations that you need.

  1. Set a Christmas Budget Per Child

Do you buy and buy and buy for your kids in the run-up to Christmas only to look back after it’s all over, thinking they got too much? You're not alone! The trick to avoiding this in 2020 is to set a budget for each child.

  1. Make a Present List

Create a list of all the people you need to buy for and set a maximum budget beside each one. Make sure you include Secret Santa ideas if your work is doing a secret Santa this year.

  1. Stick to Your Budgets!

There is no point in creating budgets if you don't stick to them! Always remember that budgets put more money in your pocket for the things you want to do in the future, so try to avoid going over them.

  1. Shop Smart for Cheap Xmas Gifts

Okay, there are a few points to cover in this one:

  • Don't leave your shopping until the last minute as your intention of finding budget gifts for him or her will quickly go out the door. Instead, as time runs out and your stress levels hit boiling point, you'll spend way more than you budgeted.
  • Meaningful gifts sent from the heart are usually much better than just buying something expensive. However, just be careful with that sister-in-law or nephew who always looks at labels and price tags – every family has them!
  • Don't go out shopping as a social event with your friends as you are more likely to spend over your budget. Instead, shop solo.
  • Make a list of the things you are looking for before you go into a shop. This saves time, and it also helps to prevent impulse purchases.
  1. Plan a Family Secret Santa

You’re probably familiar with workplace secret Santa’s, but the idea can also work in your family, especially the adult members of your family. 

So, instead of everyone buying smallish gifts for everyone, everyone buys one slightly more expensive and substantial gift for one other person. Depending on the size of your family, the savings can be quite big.

  1. Vacation on a Budget

If you normally go on holiday during the Christmas period, or are planning to this year, consider taking a budget Christmas vacation. For example, cut back on a few of the things you would normally spend on, reduce the length of time you'll be away, or holiday a bit closer to home.

Finally, Remember That If the Unexpected Happens, Help is Available

Whether at Christmas or at any other time of the year, there is one thing that never changes – the unexpected can strike at any time. And when it does strike, it is usually at lightning speed, giving you little opportunity to adjust.

At Save My Bacon, we're here to help when you come up against these bumps in the road. We have flexible Christmas loan products that can give you the space and time you need to get everything back on track. We can also help if you want a holiday loan to take a Christmas vacation.

We can't stop the unexpected from happening (although it would be a superpower we would choose if we could). What we can do is give you some peace of mind that you have options when you need them most.