Ways to Avoid a Christmas Spending Hangover

November 26, 2016


I make a weekly appearance on Mondays at Noon CST on OneLifeRadio.com on the iheart media network.  On October 24, 2016, I discussed Christmas shopping and how to avoid a “Spending hangover”.

Here’s a link to the show and my notes below.

October 24th 2016

Talking Points (they make a great checklist!!)

  1. Build Christmas traditions instead of focusing on the GIFTS
    1. Putting up lights and inviting neighbors over for the “flip the switch” moment
    2. Choose a real tree together – or rent a live tree
    3. Tree trimming with hot cocoa, Christmas music and eggnog
    4. Deliver treats to neighbors together
    5. Grandparents enjoy crafts and homemade cards from grandchildren as much as purchased gifts
    6. Make your annual Christmas light drive around your town and event with thermoses of hot chocolate and candy canes
  2. Make a list and stick to it — use it to set your budget
    1. Include everyone – family members, babysitter, teachers, postman
    2. List specific gifts on paper instead of stacking gifts up in real life
    3. Write out maximum budget for each person
    4. Make a promise to stop shopping when you’ve fulfilled your list
    5. Start early – don’t wait last minute
    6. Use Amazon and save on shipping charges – easy and painless
    7. Research online – consumer reports, amazon reviews
    8. Take advantage of actually shopping online and locally
    9. Support local crafters and artisans
    10. Skip Black Friday …. Many times the deals are “real” and you can get caught up in the frenzy of the moment
    11. Reconsider “self-gifting” …. Average of $130 spent on shoppers while they were shopping for others
    12. Get double duty for gifts – fun Christmas pajamas are still pajamas!
  3. Get creative
    1. Your child’s teacher might appreciate a $10 bottle of champagne as much as tins of candy or another coffee gift card – purchase in a case for a discount and give the same to friends from the office and neighborhood
    2. Make gifts instead of making purchases
      1. Photography in a frame
      2. Candy and treats – homemade!  fudge, caramel corn, homemade rice crispy treats, a cake!
      3. Cookies
    3. Jewelry – earrings, bracelets
  4. Save on Travel expenses
    According to the United States Department of Transportation, the holiday season isamong the busiest long-distance travel periods of the year.  Thanks to family visits and extra vacation days, the six day period around Thanksgiving boasts 54% more long-distance trips and the Christmas/New Year’s holiday period boasts 23% more long-distance trips. All of this translates into higher rates on airfare.Travel outside of the last and first weeks of the year

    1. Great deals first of December and middle of January
    2. Book way in advance for best deals on flights and cruises
    3. Stay close to home – road trip instead of flight

What are your favorite ways of not going over-budget for the Holidays?

Shellie Gardner
Aside from throwing dinner parties that feature at least two kinds of cheese dip, Shellie's passions include travel, Mid-Century Modern furnishings and finding the perfect street taco. Has been known to snort laugh champagne.

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