Christmas is a special time for everyone. We spend it with family and friends, organise a Christmas dinner, and give each other presents for pleasure. However, after a nice holiday period we can experience a real "cold shower", when it will turn out that we spend on gifts and preparations much more money than we planned. What to do to avoid a hole in the household budget? There are several solutions.
In 2013, Christmas presents, food, and meetings with family and friends costed a statistical Polish family approximately PLN 1,200. What to do to avoid spending more this year, or even save some money? Remember to stick to several basic rules and you certainly will not overspend.
Plan all your expenses.
Christmas is a time when everyone has to deal with the increasing number of chores. We often postpone some Christmas preparations, e.g. buying presents. That is a mistake. While doing shopping right before Christmas we usually end up with high prices of products, so it is better to tend to certain matters earlier. Remember to always write down all planned expenses, both those for the preparation of the family dinner and those for presents or decorations. When we know the amount needed several months before Christmas, we can start saving. It is a good idea to put the change from shopping aside and each week allocated a fixed amount to a specific purpose.
Buy in advance.
Christmas shopping should be carefully thought out. Sales are a good opportunity to look for presents. You can buy products at really attractive prices. However, if we did not manage to buy a present on sale, it is a good idea to use several tips which can reduce your expenses. Firstly: buy online - prices are usually lower. Secondly: visit websites with presents and shopping portals. Thirdly: remember about price comparison engines, thanks to which you will buy presents at the lowest prices. These are for example:
By buying online you also reduce expenses on petrol and do not waste time on getting to the shops. By not going to supermarkets, you do not yield to additional temptation waiting around every corner. When looking for a perfect present, it is good to use the group purchase offer. You can find many inspirations on such websites. Try for example:
Remember, however, that presents should bring joy. Talk with your close ones about their expectations. Ask them what they would like to get on this special day. This way, you reduce the risk of buying a useless present and do not spend money unnecessarily. Dream gifts are often a huge expense for the family, but you can avoid it. It has long been known that the best presents are those given from the heart, often hand-made.
Do it yourself.
A good idea for a present are photographic collages and photo albums. Nowadays we tend to develop photographs less frequently, and such a gift will certainly please everyone. Many will be also happy to get hand-made and decorated sweets. A lot of job can also be brought by a compilation of favourite recipes given in the form of a book or a hand-made wallet. It is a good idea to look for websites and blogs which will inspire us, e.g.:
You can also design and make home decorations. Interesting flowerpots, pictures, frames, and figurines - these are only some among a wide range of ideas. You can also find a lot of inspirations on the Internet, e.g. on blogs where the authors share their interesting ideas for gifts. You can find there e.g. instructions how to make a light embedded in a book or a key hanger made from old seat belts. Ideas and instructions how to put them in practice can be found on the following websites:
However, remember no to let hand-made products exceed our planned budget.
Report: Zakupy świąteczne 2013_Deloitte: http://www.deloitte.com/pl/xmas