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From purchasing gifts to traveling and entertaining, holiday expenses can add up fairly quickly. It’s easy to overspend without even realizing it!
Here are some ideas to help keep your spending down and your holiday spirit up.
This goes for almost everything — from gifts to airfare and hotel rooms. Buying gifts over the course of the year means you can take advantage of sales and avoid the last-minute frenzy. And, travel prices often rise as the holidays near.
Leave early (or late)
Whether you’re taking a plane, train, or automobile, consider traveling on off-peak dates. You’ll often save money doing so, and you may save yourself some hassle, too.
Spread the load
Entertaining can be costly, so ask others for help. Instead of making all the food yourself, have a potluck. And, share the burden when it comes to gifts. Draw names for gift-giving, make a donation on behalf of the entire family, or set limits for gift buying.
Take a different approach
Do you send holiday cards and a letter each year? Consider emailing your letter, posting it on Facebook, or sending postcards instead. Buying gifts online can save both time and money, too, especially if you take advantage of free shipping and gift-wrapping options. You could even do away with physical gifts altogether because the best gift of all is spending time with family and friends.
The holidays can be stressful enough, so don’t add to that stress by overextending yourself. With a little bit of planning, and maybe a little shift in thinking, you can have a happy — and budget-friendly — season.