The holiday season is upon us, and with it comes the excitement of gift-giving, festive decorations, and, for most, holiday shopping. While an exciting time, the holidays can also bring financial stress. That’s why we are here to help provide some savvy shopping tips aimed at helping you make mindful and budget-friendly choices during this season.
Below are some ideas to navigate the holiday shopping season wisely and ensure your celebrations are not only joyful but also financially stress-free:
- Create a Budget and Stick to It: Based on findings from a National Retail Federation (NRF) survey, the typical American family spends more than $1,000 at the holidays. Anticipating a 3-4% increase from 2022, the NRF foresees record-breaking holiday spending in November and December this year. Craft a realistic budget that includes gifts, decorations, and parties. Then, regularly check your expenses to make sure you’re staying on track.
- Take Advantage of Black Friday Deals: Black Friday presents a fantastic opportunity to score significant savings on your holiday purchases. Researching the best deals in advance and considering online shopping to avoid the crowds while still enjoying the discounts is an excellent strategy for maximizing the Black Friday experience. Additionally, the trend of early Black Friday sales has gained momentum in recent years, potentially allowing you to begin your shopping spree even before the official day arrives. For valuable tips, explore this article from USA Today now!
- Make a List: Creating a comprehensive list of gift recipients and thoughtful gift ideas for each person is another way to stick to your financial goals this holiday season. Having a plan in place reduces the likelihood of impulse buying and helps you stay on track with your budget.
- Compare Prices: Consider comparing prices this holiday season. Various stores offer different sales, providing the opportunity to find the item you're looking for at a lower cost in one place compared to another. Even if the savings are small on each purchase, it can accumulate to substantial overall savings! Some websites that can even help you compare prices include Price.com, ShopSavvy, or Google Shopping.
- Get Creative- DIY! Creating do-it-yourself (DIY) projects can be a fantastic and cost-effective approach to celebrate the holiday season while saving money. Not only do DIY projects allow for personalized and thoughtful gifts, but they also contribute to a unique and memorable festive atmosphere. Some ideas could include a personalized photo album or scrapbook, homemade candles and soaps, baked goods, and holiday cards. Check out this article from Better Home & Gardens for some more fun DIY holiday ideas!
- Re-Gifting Is Always an Option: When executed with discretion, re-gifting can serve as an environmentally conscious and budget-friendly method to spread joy. For instance, if you receive multiple candles this year and don't anticipate using them all, consider re-gifting—just be sure not to give the gift back to the person who originally gave it to you.
- Give the Gift of an Experience: Opting to give the gift of experiences during the holidays can be a brilliant idea, offering both meaningful and cost-effective alternatives to traditional material gifts. This approach not only fosters memorable moments but also allows for creative and personalized gestures without breaking the bank. Explore some ideas here!
- Consider a Savings Program: Many financial institutions offer Holiday Savings Programs, including Advia. We offer our Holiday Club Savings, which allows members to make regular deposits throughout the year to then use during the holidays. This can help you set funds aside and budget for the holiday season better. We suggest starting this in January and identifying how much you spend per year, dividing that amount by the number of times you get paid in 2024, and begin weekly (or bi-weekly) automatic deposits into a new Holiday Savings Account throughout the year. In the Fall, right before the holidays, the funds will automatically be transferred into your primary share savings to be ready for the holiday spending season.
- Use a card that earns you points or cash back. Advia’s Visa Credit Cards offer opportunities to earn $200 back when you use your new card actively within the first two (2) months, and our rewards card offers up to 3% back, a $0 annual fee, and much more. For full details, visit here.
While the holiday season can be financially stressful, with proper planning, you can enjoy the festivities without the added stress that comes with overspending.
National Retail Federation: https://nrf.com/research-insights/holiday-data-and-trends/winter-holidays
USA Today: Early Black Friday sales happening now—Get deals on Hulu, PlayStation, and More - Reviewed (usatoday.com)
Price.Com: Price.com: Compare the Best Prices for Shopping Online
Google Shopping: Google Shopping - Shop Online, Compare Prices & Where to Buy
Good Housekeeping: 30 Festive Christmas Holiday Crafts You Can Make Right Now (bhg.com); 49 Best Gift Experiences 2023 - Unique Experience Ideas for Him & Her (goodhousekeeping.com)