The Philippines is known to have the longest Christmas Season in the world, as it kicks in during the “ber” months.
While the holidays bring about a feeling of festivities and merrymaking, it can as easily be the most expensive season of the year. To enjoy the holidays without creating a hole in your pocket, here are some ways to save on Christmas gifts and give-ways.
Set aside a holiday fund. Bazaar schedules have been released to keep our weekends busy enough with Christmas shopping. If you haven’t started setting aside money for this from your previous months’ income, set aside an amount today from the money you currently have. Take some from the upcoming paydays as well as from your 13th month. By doing so, you wouldn’t wonder where all your money went and realize that you’ve just overspent.
Make a list. Santa does it best by making a list and checking it twice. List down the names of your family, friends and godchildren. What are their ages? Will you be seeing them during the holidays? By having a list, you get to buy appropriate gifts and only for those you will see in Christmas. By doing so, you won’t end up with extra items that can get stale. I even suggest you list the gifts you gave the year before so you don’t give the same gift this year. Otherwise you might end up spending more than what is necessary.
Have a budget and stick to it. Since you’ve made your list, it will be best to have a budget too. How much have you saved so far? Would you like to spend all of it for Christmas gifts and give aways? Are you planning on buying things which are more expensive than the ones you bought last year? Take these into consideration as you identify your shopping budget and stick to it.
Personalize. Christmas is always a time to get creative so why not let your creative juices flow and go DIY. Not only will personalized gifts stand out from the sea of gifts that one receives, it is more likely to be more appreciated too.
Shop around, and shop early. Whether you’re giving personalized gifts or buying commercial, it’s good to shop around. This way, you get to look at various options. There are still some malls staging sales these days. While you still have time, start using whatever you’ve saved for the season so you don’t need to rush and end up buying gifts beyond your budget because you don’t have enough time.
Following these simple tips will not only relieve you from the stress that the holiday rush brings, it will also make your loved ones say, “Thank you for the love!”
We, your FinancePH advisors, will be glad and more than willing to help you plan your finances. Our customized financial planning approach caters to each individual needs, budgets and priorities.
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(Originally written by Marla C. Rama at http://www.savingstips.com.ph)
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