Save money this holiday season and still enjoy it.
Online shopping is expected to grow this holiday season, according to Deloitte’s annual holiday retail forecast. E-commerce holiday sales are projected to grow 11% to 15% compared to the 2020 season. Overall, Deloitte projects that holiday sales will total $1.28 to $1.3 trillion during November to January.
Even with this type of growth, many retailers are struggling. The current state of retail is leading to deep discounts even earlier than typical for the holiday season. Discounts are just one way to save during the holidays. If you are looking to save money this holiday season, read on.
Try Secret Santa or White Elephant.
As we get older, families can get bigger. As your circle expands, it might not make sense to buy a gift for every member of the family. Switching to “Secret Santa” or “White Elephant” can help you save hundreds of dollars. With a “Secret Santa” gift exchange, each person pulls a piece of paper out of a hat or bowl. On that piece of paper is the name of the person you need to shop for. It’s a fun game that adds an element of surprise. In “White Elephant,” each person buys one gift. There is typically a minimum and/or maximum dollar amount set, so that no one is disappointed. Everyone brings their gifts to the party. Write numbers on pieces of paper, and each person pulls a number. The numbers identify the order in which people can choose a gift. In this game, people can steal gifts or choose a new one to open. It’s a fun game that adds entertainment to the evening.
Make dinner a potluck.
If you host a large gathering for the holidays, making dinner can cost hundreds of dollars, not to mention tons of time. This year, request that everyone contribute something to the meal. It helps to keep a list to ensure you have coverage for main dishes, sides, desserts, and beverages if those are important to everyone and to prevent people from bringing the same items. Many people want to contribute and will be happy to do so, but keep in mind people’s budgets.
Switch to holiday e-cards.
Printed holiday cards can cost over $100 depending on how many people you plan to send to. Shutterfly charges around $2-$3 per card for example. That doesn’t include the cost of postage. You can save money by sending your holiday cards electronically instead. If some of your elderly friends or family don’t have e-mail, you could print a select few cards.
Be careful with credit cards.
While credit cards are handy, they can be dangerous to your financial health during the holidays. Some holiday shoppers end up in major credit card debt that can be difficult to pay off. Creating a budget and shopping list and sticking to them can help reduce your credit card debt. If you do use a credit card for holiday shopping, be sure to use the one with the lowest interest rate. Check your balance regularly and make multiple payments to keep your balance low and avoid impacting your credit score.
You can still enjoy the holidays without going into major debt. Try a “Secret Santa” or “White Elephant” gift exchange this year. You’ll have fun and save money. Ask your friends and family to contribute to the holiday meal to avoid taking on all the financial responsibility. Switch from print to e-cards to save money and trees. Watch your credit card spending to avoid paying a ton in interest.
Uprova can help with your holiday spending or debt. You can request up to $5,000 in personal loan funding to cover a wide range of expenses. You can use a personal loan to consolidate expensive holiday debt. Learn more at Uprova.com.