Ways to Save Money on Christmas Shopping

It’s that time of the year again where the bells and cash registers jingle and the retailers laugh all the way to the bank. If you’re the type of generous Santa who gives gifts to everyone from your family to the anonymous mail carrier, Christmas doesn’t have to end with you bankrupt. Or if you dread this season for the simple reason that you are out of cash here are a few tips that will make Scrooge proud and your wallet thick.

Make a list- And check it twice. Any smart shopper will tell you that the key to not exceeding your budget is knowing who and what you are shopping for. Make a list of all your friends and acquaintances you are reasonably on good terms with. Then assign the amount you are willing to spend on each person. Friendship may be priceless but gifts are not. If you are on a strict budget trim that long list to people you absolutely have to give gifts to. You may not be popular with all of your co-workers but at least you have your cold cash to keep you company.

Stick to the plan- While you are shopping it is unavoidable to suddenly see an item that you think this person would absolutely love. You start thinking that although the item is ridiculously overpriced it would make the person happy if you buy it for them. Don’t. You’re sticking to the budget. Avoid that nasty impulse to buy everything that’s marked ‘sale’.

Buy for groups- It will be easier to group people by the importance (expense) of gifts you would give them. A bunch of people may just be given candy or cards. Buy in bulk and you’ll save a lot of money.

Co-opt someone to share the gift- Try to waylay someone to share a gift with you. This will help you get someone a really expensive and special gift without costing too much for everyone involved.

Get your Christmas jollies early- The early bird really does get the worm. Shopping months before Christmas allows you to stagger the cost of gifts.

Have your very own workshop- You don’t need an army of elves to be extra handy this Christmas. Homemade gifts are the best way to save money. And if you’re really on a very tight budget you can recycle gifts and spruce them up. You can make your own gift wrappers instead of buying. You’ll be surprised at how much this will save you.

Be thoughtful- It helps if you really know the person you’re buying the gift for. If it’s a close friend, it’s easier to find items that mean something to them without costing you an arm and a leg. If one of your friends are mad about bottle caps why not fill their collection?

Explore- Just relying on malls to buy gifts would restrict you in terms of choice and price range. Go to alternative shopping places like bazaars or even garage sales. One man’s trash is your cheap gift.

Avoid buying the first thing you see- Christmas shopping is an art and it requires patience to perfect. After a day of shopping your feet maybe killing you and your stomach is demanding sustenance but the key to Christmas shopping is telling yourself that in the next shop there may be a better bargain.

Go to on line auctions– The Internet has made finding bargains so much easier. On line shopping gives you the vast resource of the World Wide Web in your home. Auctions give you the best chance to get that item for a reasonable amount. Try not to overbid.

There you have it. Your bank account survival relies on you finding ways to cut Christmas shopping costs. Good luck.

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