Two Ways To Keep Your Spending In Check This Holiday
During the holidays, it's all too easy to get carried away by the spirit of giving. Before you know it, you can spend all your savings and put a huge amount on your credit card. If this isn't the first time you've bungled your finances because of the holidays, this year you need to do something different.
Let these two life hacks help you protect your finances, so you can avoid going into debt over the festivities.
1. Be honest about your finances
Everyone celebrates the holidays. Between work get-togethers, neighbourhood drop-ins, dinner with friends and family, and all the gifts, you and your budget will be stretched in a hundred different directions. It's easy for your finances to snap under the pressure.
You need to learn how to talk about your financial situation, so you can take some of the strain off your budget.
It's never easy talking about money, and it's especially hard when you broach the subject around the holidays. You can feel like a failure when you bring up your financial issues with others, but don't let your insecurities silence your voice. When you keep mum about your budget, you can commit to plans that push you deep into debt.
Go in as much detail as you feel comfortable sharing. If you've had to rely on payday loans in the past year, talk to your family about why you needed them. Whether it was for an unexpected household repair or several ill-timed bills, discuss how online payday loans helped you cover financial emergencies quickly. From there, talk about why these emergencies are harder for you than most people.
Once they understand your financial situation, don't just bow out of the festivities. While current plans may be out of your financial capabilities, you can still celebrate with your family. Come to the conversation prepared with budget-friendly alternatives, like:
|Buying each family member multiple gifts||Organizing a Secret Santa exchange so you only have to buy for one person|
|Buying all your gifts||Making one-of-a-kind, thoughtful gifts for your loved ones|
|Shopping without a budget||Suggesting a budget for each gift and/or person on your list|
When you and your family work together, you'll find a way to celebrate the holidays that works for everyone.
2. Use your phone to save money
Saving tips during the holidays are always a little funny. While they can help you lower your bills during the festivities, they can't do anything about the time of year. It's still the holiday season - a time when most people are spending a lot more than they would usually. Even if you manage to switch the family gift-giving tradition to a simple Secret Santa, you'll still be expected to buy a top-secret gift or two. Then there's the added food, booze, and travel expenses of meeting up with friends and family.
Your phone can help you save on these essential items, but it comes with one caveat. You'll have to delete some apps and photos to free up some space. That's because your smartphone is at its most frugal when you download specific apps.
|Checkout 51||This app offers cash-back on eligible products at the grocery store|
|Snipsnap||Another grocery app that shares money-saving coupons on favourite items|
|Ibotta||This rebate app earns you cash-back on household items, clothing, and more|
|Groupon||This app offers promotions and coupons on activities, products, services, and travel|
|ShopKick||This app rewards its users with free gift cards to Amazon and Walmart just for shopping normally|
|Parabus||This smart app tracks your purchases and compares them to in-store and online promotions to make sure you never miss out on a price drop|
Mix and match these apps to get your full savings worth this holiday. But don't delete them from your phone. These money-saving apps can help you lower your household shopping bills all year round, so you never spend more than you should on groceries, gifts, clothing, or household items.
Your holiday finances need attention. When you learn how to adapt the way you celebrate to match your financial abilities, you'll be able to come out of the holidays on a steadier footing. Starting the new year in the red isn't always an inevitability following Christmas. You can protect your budget from the worst of seasonal overspending by adjusting how you celebrate with your loved ones and how you spend with apps.