For many of us, the holidays are a time when we show our loved ones how much we care about them. We tend to show this in many ways, from spending more time with them, planning a trip to visit them, and even buying gifts for them. The holidays are often associated with spending more money, in particular. In this blog, I’m going to provide you with helpful tips on saving money, whilst simultaneously ensuring that the holidays continue to be a fun time for everyone who is celebrating with you.
Here are some helpful tips to make sure you still have some money in your bank account, even when the holiday season is over:
1) Use a programmable thermostat: If you’re going to be spending a considerable amount of time visiting others, use a programmable thermostat to keep the heat low when you’re out of the house, and turn it back on when you’re home. Even if you don’t plan on leaving the house much, you can save a lot on your heating bill by lowering the temperature at night time, or when you are at work.
2) Cut down on your data plan: Canadians pay some of the highest fees for mobile data in the entire world. While you may enjoy your current plan, perhaps it’s time to rethink the costs you are incurring. Many places offer free Wi-Fi nowadays, and chances are you’ll be indoors more often during the holidays, so this can be an easy way to save money. Stop looking at your cell phone so much, and spend time with your loved ones instead!
3) Make it a potluck: If you’re hosting guests at your house, an easy (and delicious) way to cut down on your costs is to make it a potluck dinner. Have everyone bring a dish of their own, and you’ll spend far less time and money on the ingredients necessary for your holiday feast.
4) Set a price limit for gifts: Set a limit for how much everyone is allowed to spend on a particular gift. For instance, if you set a limit at 25$ per gift, it forces everyone to be more creative, and is generally much more budget-friendly. Additionally, if you are going to be giving gifts to a family with very young children, you can get a family present for everyone, instead of a unique item for each individual.
5) Don’t buy on credit, if you can’t otherwise afford it: This suggestion isn’t only applicable during the holidays. It’s a good rule to adhere to at all times. Interest rates on credit cards are notoriously high, and can be predatory towards lower-income individuals. If you can’t afford it with cash or debit, it is best not to get it all.
I hope you find these tips useful to you! Make sure you have fun this holiday season, and I hope you and your loved ones have a safe and happy break this winter!