Between family gatherings and buying presents, the season of giving can be stressful.
According to the 2018 Bankrate Holiday Gifting Survey, more than 40% of people who shop for gifts feel pressured to spend more than they had planned. That number goes up for parents to 54%.
Whether it’s to keep up with your neighbors or bring an extra big smile to their children’s faces, spending over the holidays can quickly get out of control.
Here are few ways to rein in the holiday urge to splurge.
Have a plan: It seems like a no-brainer, but it’s cruicial to put some thought into what you can afford to spend this year and build your shopping list from there. If your budget is tight this year, maybe just purchase one high-ticket item on your child’s wish list, or split the money across several less expensive gifts. No matter how you budget, taking the time to create a strategic shopping list will prevent you from making impulse buys. You’ll also feel less stressed out if you have a few gift options for each person, so you aren’t locked into and searching for one popular item that has sold out.
Shop early: It’s not too late! Even though Black Friday has passed, you can still find great deals on most items from the end of November through early December. And if you feel it’s already too late to save this year, resolve to do better next year and get a jump start on next year’s list. You can save 50% to 75% beginning Dec. 26.
Get a deal: Not everyone is into clipping or keeping track of coupons, and the good news is, technology can do it for you. Once you have your shopping list, sign up for coupon deal sites like RetailMeNot.com and you’ll have the latest discounts available on your favorite brands and stores at your fingertips. If you are a big Amazon shopper, consider setting up a wish list and signing up for camelcamelcamel.com. You’ll get alerts when the price drops on your wish list items.
You can also reduce the stress of buyer’s remorse by signing up for the free app Paribus. The app will monitor your order receipts emailed from major online retailers. if your item goes on sale within 14 days of your purchase, the app will contact the retailer on your behalf to have the difference credited back to you. It’s a gift that keeps giving all year long.
Need help funding this year’s gift list? Contact your credit union to see if you qualify for a Holiday loan or a credit card.