With Christmas fast approaching you maybe looking for ways you can make your budget go a little further. So we have searched the web, and put together our top ideas to help you budget this Christmas.
Before you start shopping, write a budget, and include a list of everyone you want to get a present for. The Money Savings Expert have a free budget planner that can help. Remember to include all the extra costs like food, drink, wrapping paper and Christmas pyjamas. www.moneysavingexpert.com/banking/Budget-planning
Space is always at a premium just after Christmas, where are you going to store everything? Get a head of the game and sell things you haven’t used in the past 12 months before Christmas and add the funds of the sale to your Christmas budget.
There are a range of cashback reward sites to sign up to. If you click though them to buy something, they get paid for this, and give some of it back to you. Always check that provider is the cheapest, before making a purchase. You can also get cashback for purchases at a range of high street retailers with our Change Account, find out more here. www.eslcu.co.uk/products-and-services/savings-products/debit-card-and-account
From perfume to biscuits, the premium brands are not always better. Buying a bottle of perfume from Next or M&S could be cheaper than Dior or Lacoste and can smell just as nice. It can be the same with food, higher branded goods are not always better. Look out for offers and buy what you know you like.
By writing a list of things you want to buy, if you see food or a present a good price you can get it early and put it in your Christmas cupboard. Make sure you tick the item off your list, so you do not buy it twice. There are a range of online tools that will send you email alerts when your chosen item is on offer. We really like www.lovesales.com
If you are feeling prepared, ordering from overseas can be a great way to get stocking fillers and small gifts at a great price. Do take your time before ordering to check for delivery / customs charges and the return policy. There are some helpful guides online that are worth a read first.
Ebay or Outlet shopping can be a hidden trove of bargains. Many big brands now have their outlet shops online either via Ebay or other websites. Ebay can also be a great place to nab a bargain, but remember to read the description carefully, and check the delivery costs before buying.
Secret Santa does not have to be limited to just the work place. Many friends and also families have an No Unnecessary Present Pact, which can include just buying for children, or having a secret Santa between friends or extended family. This can allow you to spend a little bit more on one gift for a group of people than buying for them all.
All the add on’s for Christmas is where some of the hidden costs can be. Making your own cards and wrapping paper can be a great way to reduce costs and make your gifts more personal. Also homemade Christmas decorations can be a great way to get in the mood for Christmas and create memories for future years.
Out of ideas for someone? A gift from a charity can a great alternative to run of the mill gift. Money Savings Expert have a good link of Charity gifts, and also includes how much goes to good causes. www.moneysavingexpert.com/deals/charity-gifts Top of Form
If buying for young children or looking for stocking filler ideas, you can create a gift that has a low-price tag but big on laughs and enjoyment. This can include snowman soup (hot chocolate powder, marshmallows and choc chips), to a big box filled with balloons! There are lots of blogs and forum boards for cheap child friendly Christmas ideas.
If you do need a little bit more money for your Christmas budget, research your credit options early. A small loan from your local Credit Union could be a cheaper solution to Store or Credit Cards and will definitely be cheaper than repay weekly shops! See our Christmas Loan page for a loan slider to see how much a week a £500 loan will cost. https://www.eslcu.co.uk/products-and-services/loan-products/christmas-loan/
You can also save for next year from the same repayment. Our Christmas Saving Account is protected by the FSCS. www.eslcu.co.uk/products-and-services/savings-products/christmas-saver