Stretch Your Holiday Budget

Budget Planning

If money’s a little tight this year, these tips can help you downsize your spending without reducing your holiday joy.

  • Make a spending plan, know your limits, and stick to it. Make a list of everything you usually spend during the holidays, including gifts, food, entertainment, travel expenses, etc., and tally the costs. Compare it to what you can spend this year. If you’re over budget, decide what you need to cut.

  • Record your expenditures. Track every dollar you spend on holiday clothing, cards, postage, wrapping paper, and decorations. A running count will help you stay on track.

  • Shop with a list. Making a list and sticking to it allows you to complete your shopping in record time and avoid impulse buying.

  • Shop early. The best holiday shopping window is between October 1 and December 1. Last-minute shoppers rarely save money.

  • Educate yourself. Scour the internet and your favorite shopping apps to find the best deals before you head to the store. You may find one store has the same item for a lower price.

  • Pay cash. It’s easy to spend more with credit cards. Spending cash can help eliminate overspending.

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