With the holidays quickly approaching you may find that you’re one of many Americans who haven’t completed their shopping. The stress is kicking in, and the bank accounts are depleting themselves. Year after year people tell themselves they aren’t going to spend as much the following year. Chances are you’ll end up spending as much, or even more. Often times your list of who to buy for seems to grow instead of shrink.
How can you save money this holiday season with Black Friday and Cyber Monday already here and gone? The good news is that so many people still have their shopping to do that stores are participating in other various sales. Amazon, Costco, and Microsoft are having “12 days of deals” where every day for 12 days they are offering a sale on a particular item. Another way to save money this holiday season is to celebrate the holidays after Christmas. On December 26th many retailers offer 50% off Christmas items. These sales usually include gift baskets and other items deemed “Christmas gifts” even though they could easily be used and sold any time of the year. You could take advantage of these sales even if you have already finished your shopping for this year, or already celebrated for the year. Many of the items you can purchase could be stored for next year. Not only would you be saving money but you could also make next year less stressful by getting a head start on your shopping.
Also keep in mind that many people you are buying for don’t actually want any gifts. I know of many people who actually dread gift swapping because they then have to figure out even more gift ideas and spend more money. So why add that additional stress and cost if it doesn’t make both sides happier in the end anyways.
If you have extended family that you’re buying for you could switch to a gift swap where every one only buys one gift and you can make a game out of it. You can “steal” others gifts and if your gift gets stolen you can open a new present or “steal” someone else’s.
Remember, the holidays are a time for family, friends and joy. It’s not about the gifts, but instead about the memories you are making in the presence of others.