How to Stick to Your Holiday Gifting Budget

Don’t get us wrong: We love the holidays! But to say they are stressful is an understatement. Holiday gifting is a considerable expense, not to mention the added time constraints and the pressure to find that perfect gift for everyone on your list. Here are a few money-saving tips to ensure you stick to your holiday gifting budget this year.

Create a Comprehensive Gift List

Before you begin your holiday shopping, create a list that includes every person you plan to gift this holiday season. It’s easy to throw last-minute people into the mix, but a list will help you plan your budget around those nearest and dearest to you and avoid overspending on others.

Set a Spending Limit

Next, you’ll want to set an overall budget for your holiday spending as a whole. This includes gifts, miscellaneous holiday treats, gift wrap, and everything else you can think of. This way, you have a strict spending limit that you can divide up as needed, ensuring you don’t spend more money than you can afford.

Break Down Your Spending Limit

Now that you have an overarching budget, determine where you’re going to allocate it. How much do you want to spend per person? Is there anyone you need to splurge on and others where you can pull back? It might feel odd to categorize your gifting this way, but it will help you adhere to your budget.

Keep Track of Your Spending

You’re probably not doing all your shopping at one time and in one place. For this reason, you should be keeping track of your spending. This way, you’ll know when you are approaching your limit. The more attention you pay to your spending, the less likely you are to overreach.

Rely on Coupons

Coupon shopping is an effective way to get more for your money. Before purchasing an item from any store, do a quick online search for coupons or join its mailing list to get a percentage off your order. Shopping is hard enough without the added stress of running out of money. When you use coupons and other deals, you’re making the most of what you have.

Avoid Impulse Buys

Yes, you may walk into a store after you’ve finished your shopping and find that perfect item for someone. But unless you’re able to return items you’ve already purchased, resist the urge to grab that shiny new item and instead make peace with the successful purchases you’ve already made.

Go for Meaningful Alternatives

Lastly, it’s important to remember that when it comes to holiday gifting, it’s not about the “stuff” but, instead, the thought behind it. So if your budget is particularly tight this year, don’t sweat it. Think creatively about the gifts you give. For instance, take up knitting and hand-make your presents. Or, gift an activity such as a trip to the movies or a fun, casual dinner. Whatever you decide, they’ll love it – and your budget will too.

Holiday gifting doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. With these tips in mind, you can get gifts for everyone on your list while successfully sticking to your budget!

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