As we head towards the start of the holiday/silly, we need to take a step back and look at how different 2022 was compared to 2023. Although we are well and truly over COVID and border shutdowns, with interest rates going up and food and fuel costs soaring, your Christmas budget might not stretch as far in 2023.  Lets look at some money saving tips for Xmas.

We thought it might be useful to look at ways how you can save this Christmas and reduce the post-Christmas bill shock. Here are some money saving tips you can try. Ok, this may not strictly be accounting advice, but it’s a light-hearted look at saving cash.

Prepare a Budget and don’t overspend

We know budgets aren’t very festive but knowing how much cash you can spare and having a plan of attack is the best way to ensure you don’t end up on the debt naughty list.  Make a list that includes gifts, decorations, food, drinks, fuel, and entertainment. This way, you’ll know if you’re going overboard and can rein in that spending.

Secret Santa

Everyone stresses about what to buy and what happens if you miss someone on your gift list. Buying gifts for every aunt, uncle, and blow-in cousin can stretch any Christmas budget, especially for large families. Instead, bring back Secret Santa to spread the joy more evenly without breaking the bank.

Plus, it’s fun! Who doesn’t love a little added mystery when opening gifts?  Who wants to be rushing around overcrowded shopping centres. Buying just one gift means you can spend more time getting your loved ones something truly special.

If money is tight, you can also limit gift prices, so everyone can afford to take part and enjoy the gift of giving.

Spend wisely

Don’t go overboard on kids’ gifts. When it comes to what to buy, some people like to use the rule of four: something they need, something they want, something they read, and something they wear. So here is something we cam across while researching this article and its good advice.

“If you really want your kid’s Christmas to feel special, play with them! The joy they get from any toy will be far more special if they can share it with you”

Homemade gifts

When the COVID lockdowns hit, many of us reconnected with old hobbies or picked up entirely new and novel skills. Now it’s time for that effort to pay off! Bake a loaf of delicious bread, stew homemade jam, pot a seedling from your garden, personalise a picture frame, write a song, crochet a scarf or macrame up a custom plant holder. Knowing it’s something you created with care will make it much more special too.

Save on decorations and wrapping paper

Despite what Instagram tells you, Christmas isn’t just about picture-perfect decor. Instead of blowing cash on sparkly tinsel and fake snow, make custom decorations from things you already have.

Reuse gift bags, recycle old newspapers and catalogues, or upcycle old scarves and totes. If your kids have a drawer bursting with artwork, fish them out. These make excellent personalised wrapping paper

Digital Gifts

If you’re buying for friends or family interstate, digital gifts are a great option to save on postage and the stress of getting your gift in the mail on time. Online gift vouchers can be emailed directly to the recipient and are available from many online retailers. Also, consider combining orders with friends. Many online shops offer free delivery for larger orders or free in-store pickup.

Bring a plate!

They say many hands make light work, but they can also put on an impressive spread. To save costs (and time) when hosting Christmas lunch or dinner, ask friends and family to bring a share plate or drinks for the communal esky. This will reduce catering costs and get you out of the summer-time kitchen faster.

Stock up for next year

Post-Christmas is the best time to cash in on wrapping and decoration bargains. So, plan ahead. Stock up on everything you’ll need for next year’s celebration while everything is cheap.

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