Check your credit score today

See your credit score in minutes. It's free, forever.

See your score

Top Tips To Save You Money This Christmas Season

Discover our favourite money saving tips for this Christmas season!

18 August 2023Lloyd Smith 5 min read
7 Tips To Save You Money This Christmas Season

Check your credit score today

See your credit score in minutes. It's free, forever.

See your score

No matter how hard you try, you are bound to notice an uptick in your spending during the Christmas season.

Apart from upholding the centuries-long tradition of exchanging gifts with family members and friends, a horde of year-end sales and offers at every retailer makes it an uphill task to not overspend.

Intelligent planning ahead of Christmas can prevent additional strain on your finances. Here are some tips to streamline your spending to help you save as much as you can:

Starting your Christmas shopping without a budget makes it incredibly easy to overspend. So, chalk up a budget before you part with a single dollar. Start by evaluating how much you can comfortably spend on gifts without putting any essential expenditure on hold.

Once you know exactly how much you can spend, it becomes easier to determine what you should purchase. Also, make sure to account for a buffer amount if you end up going over your original budget.

Having said that, resist falling for marketing gimmicks. Your goal should be to stick to your budget and spend wisely to get a bang for your buck.

Your credit card doesn’t give you a free pass to spend as much as you want. While having access to a credit line can help if you are planning on expensive purchases, you still need to repay the dues. You also need to pay the interest if you fail to pay your credit card bill on the due date. Defaulting on your credit card payments can adversely impact your credit score, making it challenging to secure borrowing in the future.

So before you go ahead and swipe your card, ensure that you have the means to repay. Keep your credit utilisation in check. If you have multiple cards, choose one that charges the lowest interest rate. Don’t apply for new credit cards only to pay for Christmas shopping. Remember that every credit card application results in lenders pulling up your credit report, and multiple hard inquiries within a short period can lower your existing score. Its best to check credit score before applying for any credit card to assess your eligibility for them.

The holiday season is the perfect time for scammers to be on the prowl. If you are shopping online, pay more attention before you part with your credit card details. Check if the website has a secured sign and if the payment methods are encrypted. Don’t click for emails that read like spam, especially those offering you something at a fraction of its original cost.

It pays off to be safe than to be sorry.

Free shipping is not a facility provided by all online retailers. Some may provide it only if you purchase a minimum amount. Check whether you can pick up all the items from a single website to receive free shipping. Look for when your favourite stores go on sale and try to purchase as much as you can to make a substantial saving. Keep an eye on their social media profiles to get notified about flash sales or weekend sales at special prices.

Collect voucher codes and coupons that can further help you to save money. You can also check if the online shops allow you to redeem your credit card reward points

The goal should be to purchase the desired product at the best price. Check out all online and offline stores stocking the product to ensure you get it at the right price. Consider if you can purchase the item at a charity shop. Not only is it a more sustainable way to shop and help the planet, but it is also good for your wallet. In other words, the more time you spend researching the product, the easier it will be to avoid impulse buying at a higher price.

You should also check whether different colours of the same item can help you save money. For instance, if you are planning to purchase a toaster oven, darker colours may be more popular than lighter colours and cost significantly more. So consider whether you can buy a less popular option.

Re-gifting is not a bad word. If you have a valuable gift lying around the house unused, it may be time to give it to someone who might appreciate it more.

However, there are some ground rules you must follow should you choose to embrace re-gifting. Never re-gift anything that is no longer in usable condition. Ensure that the recipient has a use for the item you plan to re-gift. For example, if you have newly married friends who love cooking and you have a brand new slow cooker you received last Christmas you don’t have much use for, regifting it is a great idea. Lastly, refrain from re-gifting something personalised for you. This includes any item engraved with your initials or name. It takes away from the spirit of gifting.

If you are on a tight budget this festive season but want your loved ones to feel special, consider whether you can give them a handmade gift.

Whether it is a scarf you knitted or a batch of healthy cookies you baked -- no store-bought present can provide the sentimental touch a handmade gift can. Plenty of DIY gift ideas are available online, and you can choose one depending on your skills and time. You can also make this a group activity and get your spouse and kids to help you.

Gift wrapping papers and bags cost a pretty penny. Moreover, they get thrown into the trash as soon as the recipient opens the gift.

Try out low-cost gift-wrapping ideas to save on costs. You can collect glossy sheets from magazines and newspapers and embellish them with ribbons, twines, and bows to provide a festive look. You can also purchase reusable cloth bags in bulk and use them as gift bags.

You don’t have to join the rat race to become the biggest spender to make your gift town.

Sometimes, spending time together or doing an activity together can mean more than picking up something off the shelf. If you know that the recipient prefers experiences over mindlessly adding more clutter, consider whether you can plan an activity before or after Christmas. You can check out online or offline workshops to learn to make something interesting or sign up for a heritage walk or hike.

Selling what you don’t use anymore can help you make more space in your house and also fetch additional money. There are several websites and thrift stores online where you can sell your old clothes and get cash in exchange. Websites like eBay are great outlets for selling old gadgets in functional condition. If you plan the sale ahead of time, you can earmark the money for your gifting budget.

Enjoying the festive season shouldn’t mean you have to rack up an insurmountable debt. To avoid entering into the new year with additional stress about how you will pay off your dues, follow the tips shared above and let the festive spirit ride high even after you take down your Christmas decorations.

Lloyd Smith Image

Written by Lloyd Smith

General Manager AU

Lloyd spreads the word about how awesome ClearScore is.