Christmas Holiday Mistakes to Avoid to Save Money

Christmas Ball On White Background by phasinphoto and freedigitalphotos
I love this time of year. The wind up to the Christmas holiday is my favorite time. The festive decorations, the food, the movies and music. It brings great memories to mind. It can also be a time of stress for a lot of people. For many, the stress of the budget is first and foremost. The good news is that you can save money this holiday season by not making these mistakes that can end up costing a lot and breaking the budget.

Christmas Holiday Mistakes to Avoid to Save Money

* Not Preparing Your Lists *
It may seem like you can remember it all, but honestly taking the time to plan out exactly what you need for your meals and holiday gifts will end up saving you money in the long run. How many times have you run to the store for last minute items for the meal or a forgotten gift? Last minute items end up costing more since you were not able to find discounts or just the right gift for the certain someone. Start your lists today and pick up things ahead of time as you go.

* Not Having a Budget for the Christmas Season *
While you are making your lists, plan out your budget and see how you can adjust for the holiday meal and gift giving you are planning. That will give you time to plan and adjust your shopping to your budget.

* Relying on Credit *
It is so easy to rely on credit for the holiday but it does cost you a lot in the long run. When the bills come in January, you will be struggling to make additional payments, not to mention the amount of interest it will cost you until you can manage to pay it all off. You do not have to buy gifts to impress. Get creative and stay away from credit, if you can.

* Not Shopping for Deals *
My Dad was always a last minute Christmas Eve shopper and he always ended up paying more than he should have for gifts. Planning ahead will allow you to shop around, find discounts and coupons and spread your shopping through many paychecks, not all lumped together.

* Not Planning for Next Christmas *
It is easy to say, but even putting away $10 a week, starting now, into a holiday fund will help you so much next year. I used to have a Christmas account and every week I put $20 in it. I loved getting that $1000 payout in November. It allowed me to buy a airline ticket home and have a wonderful holiday. I opened one yesterday as I was writing this post because I realize it is easier to save money when you do not even see it! I should have done it years ago so I can have a more stress-free holiday next year.

What mistakes have you made during the holidays that have cost you money? Share your experiences!

Comments

  1. Jennifer Pittman says:

    I like these tips, especially the plan ahead one! I like to plan ahead for Christmas in buying gifts that I know I will use when they are on sale or on clearance during the year.

  2. This is a great “what not to do” list, but I don;t think anyone would make any of these mistakes, they’re rookie mistakes. A serious holiday shopper would not make any of these mistakes, but thank you for sharing this post.

  3. Great tips! Some of them are things I already do, like keeping lists and avoiding credit. Over the last couple of years, I’ve also been able to save some money by using prizes I’ve won in giveaways as gifts. And of course, making gifts instead of buying them saves money, even though the ingredients or materials can be costly.

    One mistake I’ve made in the past is not planning ahead enough for mailing gifts. Last-minute almost always means a higher cost.

  4. Jo-Ann Brightman says:

    I always use lists and plan ahead. I try to make sure that I am aware well in advance of what everyone wants for Christmas and try to plan accordingly. I also try to put money into my Amazon.com account all year so that I can use it for the holidays.

  5. Sherry Compton says:

    Remember??? I need lists for my lists. I find that I make a big list then end up making smaller ones as I continually shop. This helps me keep updated with stores, sales, people I’m buying for, and items I want. I put several items for each person, knowing I don’t have to get everything but that way I have options. I check off items as I buy and mark off people completely when they are done. Off to the side I write things like chocolate santas and the number I want because I believe everyone needs chocolate at Christmas and all kids should get a book with their present.