Would it surprise you that the average Christmas spend is £538 per person in the UK? This increases to around £1034 for parents with children under 18 living at home (Your Money 2018). I totally get this! And the older the children get the price of presents goes up and the size goes down! It’s such a huge amount of money and whilst we want to have a lovely Christmas, it is just one day (OK Christmas starts in September and seems to go on forever!). Think about sensibly is Christmas really worth getting yourself stressed, in debt and miserable over? Surely the whole point of Christmas is to celebrate with family and friends, spend time with these loved ones and SLOW DOWN. Remember Christmas is the only time of the year when everything closes down, shops, businesses, schools, even social media takes a well earned dip.
6 ways to avoid over-spending at Christmas:
- Set a Budget: Be clear on how much you have or want to spend including presents, food and days out.
- Have a Plan: Having an idea of what you want to buy and from where, such as choosing to buy any jewellery gifts from F Hinds. We have a rough idea of the main gifts for the children and cost then researched the cheapest price etc. Don’t forget to ask friends and family what they actually want/need and tell them the same to avoid unnecessary spending on both parts.
- Buy Secondhand: Younger children won’t even know the difference, I have bought Olive a playset for £3 which is £12 new she won’t even realise it doesn’t have a box. Megan had a list of books a mile long a bit of trawling in the local secondhand bookshop and charity shops and I have made a small dent in her list for a fraction of the price. Kids books secondhand in so many cases look brand new.
- Be Creative: Bath bombs, homemade notebooks, biscuits and other handmade items make lovely gifts but also think about creating your own hampers or beauty gift sets, it is usually cheaper to buy the products yourself than something prepackaged.
- Be Practical: We give the children pyjamas and Christmas letters on Christmas Eve it’s a bit of a tradition but also really need new nightwear. Stockings in our house are filled with pants, socks, toothbrushes, felt tip pens, hairbrushes and bobbles, those necessity items which when placed in a stocking become filled with joy and wonder.
- Presence Over Presents: It can be so easy to get carried away with the monetary value of gift buying but most children and adults will be more than happy with you making time to be with them. We live our lives at 100 miles an hour stopping to organise a family walk with hot chocolate and mince pies at the end. Make memories. Here are a few of my suggestions, you can download this bingo and enjoy ticking them all off.
Hopefully, these tips will help make your Christmas a little more budget-friendly and avoid over-spending, make more memories and be less stressful. Have a super lovely Christmas everyone and thank you for all your continued support, love and kindness through 2019.
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