Holiday Shopping & Saving Strategies
The holiday shopping season is upon us! It can be a joyful but expensive time of year. Being savvy with your shopping and savings strategies can help you make the most of your holiday budget – here are some tips to consider:
- Set a budget and track your expenses – determine how much you can afford to spend on gifts and other holiday expenses, and stick to it! This will help you avoid overspending.
- Make a list and avoid impulse buying – stick to your gift list and avoid making last-minute impulse purchases that can blow your budget.
- Start early – shopping well in advance of the holidays allows you to take advantage of sales and discounts all year long. You’ll have more time to find the perfect gifts, and spread out your expenses.
- Compare prices – utilize price comparison websites and apps like Shopzilla or ShopSavvy to find the best deals on the items you want. Look for discounts, online and paper coupons, and promo codes that can help you save even more.
- Price matching – some stores offer price-matching policies, so if you find a lower price for an item at another retailer, they may match it and save you the trip to another store.
- Shop online and take advantage of free shipping – online shopping offers a wider selection and often better prices than in-store shopping. Look for online retailers that offer free shipping, but be aware than some may have minimum purchase requirements to get the shipping for free.
- Give the gift of time – sometimes the most meaningful gifts are experiences or acts of service, such as offering to babysit, cooking and enjoying a special meal together, or creating a coupon book for help with household chores.
- Group gifts – rather than buying individual gifts for every member of a group (such as coworkers or extended family), consider organizing a “Secret Santa” or “White Elephant” gift exchange to reduce your gift expenses.
- After-holiday sales – consider buying holiday decorations, gifts, and other non-perishable items after the holidays for significant discounts, and then store them for the following year.
- Plan for next year – it’s never too early to start setting aside a small amount of money each month in a dedicated savings account, like the Cutting Edge Holiday Club, for the following year’s holiday shopping.
By using these strategies, you can make your holiday shopping more enjoyable, cost effective, and less stressful! Remember that the thought and effort you put into your gifts often matter more than their price. Happy holidays!