8 Tips To Stay On Budget this Christmas

A Christmas planning template on an iPad. Next to the iPad is an apple pencil and paper cut out stars scattered on the desk.

Photo by Jess Bailey on Unsplash

Christmas is a wonderful time of year for so many, but for others it can cause a lot of worries and anxieties and financial pressures. You want to have this holiday time to enjoy your family and friends company. Over the years Christmas has become more commercialised and the pressure to spend more and can cause emotional shopping as you want to make sure you are treating everyone. It is important to remember that Christmas is not all about presents and money, it is the thought and spending time with family members and loved ones.

There are a variety of ways you can stay on budget at Christmas. Following certain tips can really help you to reduce the stresses and the pressure that Christmas brings. I am sharing 8 tips that you can follow to help you stay organised and on budget this Christmas.

1. Make a list of people you need to buy for at Christmas

Making a list of everyone you need to buy for this year, gives you a starting point and allows you to be organised and not do the dreaded thing and forget anyone. Once you have brought presents and cards for each one you can tick each person off the list. This will help you know how much you have left to complete before Christmas.

2. Set a strict budget for Christmas presents and one that you can afford

Setting yourself an exact budget whether that is an amount for each person or an overall budget. Setting a strict budget is great but you need to make sure it is an attainable budget for your finances. Once you have decided on a budget you need to stick to that budget as much as possible, this will allow you to come out of the holiday period with huge debt.

3. Ask everyone for a Christmas list, so you can buy them a present they want and not buying for the sake of buying

A more sustainable way of buying Christmas presents to ask people to make a wish list, this allows you buy gifts that your loved ones really want or need. There is no need to wasting your money on gifts that the other person will not use.

4. Do not put yourself in debt showing people you love them with gifts.

Like I stated before Christmas is about love and fun, it is not all about presents and spending money. Your family and loved ones would much rather have your company and the thought that goes into choosing a gift for them without putting yourself into debt spending thousands of pounds. Stick to your list and the presents your loved ones have shared, avoid going overboard.

5. Once you have set your spending amount you should draw that cash out.

This is another way that you can stick to the budget. You can then place the cash in an envelope or put the money onto a pre paid card, this way you can track how much money you have left.

On top of the desk is a wooden bowel with paper clips and a gold pen. Next to the pen is a piece of paper that is a monthly budgetPhoto by Northfolk on Unsplash

6. Ignore the sales, stick to your shopping list and try not to overspend

Leading up to Christmas and over Christmas, shops and online stores do a lot of sales which try to entice you to buy more than you actual need for Christmas gifting or food. Try not to deviate from your list as it can lead to overspending that is where it can lead to building debt from the Christmas period.

7. Make a list of additional costs

When you are planning a budget for your Christmas holidays you will want to include additional costs. Additional costs like cards, wrapping paper, tags, decorations and food that you will also need to account for. Planning these areas will also help you keep a record of your expenditure and help you stick to your final budget.

8. No emotional spending, again stick to your list

This can be seeing something in a shop that you feel a loved one may really love and buying it because of that reason, although it is a lovely gesture this can quickly lead to you over spending again. You have to stick to that list that you have created and stick the gifts you have planned for.

Do you create a budget for Christmas? I’d love to hear in the comments.

61 thoughts on “8 Tips To Stay On Budget this Christmas

  1. I think your point about not putting yourself in debt is so important. They’re loved ones at the end of the day, they’re not going to dislike us for not spending X amount of money on them (and if they do, then they need to go in the bin!) xxx

  2. I love this. I make lists for everything but I still find Christmas so stressful and often go off budget. I think you’re right about debt though. I love to spoil my loved ones but I know they wouldn’t want me be worse off for buying them an extravagant gift or several.

    Kate | thelittlecrunch.co.uk

  3. These are great tips. I’ve fallen into the “sales” and “top up gift” traps before, so this year I also asked my family members for gift ideas, and bought from their wish lists. It’s such a good idea and has saved me money this year.

  4. You have created a pretty list for this to!

    Buying from a wishlist is perfect, and there is nothing wrong with a person having some idea of what their gift will be. It is definitely not worth is spending oneself into a hole for people to whom the amount of money spent on them is worth more then the gesture itself.

  5. My partner and I have decided to use gift bags to give gifts to each other from now on, rather than wrapping paper, so that we can use the same gift bags again and again to give gifts to each other. Cuts back on waste, but I guess we won’t see the money saving until after a few rounds of gift giving

  6. Great tips! I definitely worry way too much about buying people enough gifts. I have to stop sometimes and remind myself spending time with your loved ones is what’s important!

  7. This is all spot on. I like the idea of using a prepaid card to spend or getting the cash out. There is no way you can overspend then.

    I’m pretty good normally, I’ve been under budget per child and that includes the stocking bits.

    Really helpful advice x

  8. I think people often overestimate the sheer power of simply creating and sticking to a list when it comes to holiday gift giving. We always sit down and lay out our ideas before even considering heading out to the stores… Otherwise I’d wind up with multiple gifts for people lol

  9. You know, every single year I forget to factor in the cost of wrapping paper and cards, and it can actually add up quite a bit.

    Thanks for these tips, some really solid advice in here!

  10. The Christmas time is always such a hectic time! I don’t personally celebrate it, but I do get gifts for close friends of mine and usually shopping this time of year is actual madness haha. The most important thing is to have a list of all the people you need to buy gifts from and then setting a budget for how much you want to spend per person!

    I like the idea of asking what they want for Christmas but I’d feel it takes away from the surprise element in a way!

    The sales this time of year are always so so tempting because half the time I’m convinced I need everything haha!


  11. Thanks for the tips.
    Also, it is good that one should not spend more than one earns in the name of buying gifts.

  12. This is such a good list of tips to X-ray within budget it’s funny because I just uploaded a very similar post! The list is a must and making sure that you stick to it is so important! X

  13. Being on a budget is a major thing. I found Christmas being SUPER EXPENSIVE, especially when you have a lot of people to buy for and want to go for the quality picks rather than quantity. Oh man, those additional costs can add up really quick! Thanks for sharing these mindful tips!

    Nancy ♥ exquisitely.me

  14. These are really good tips. It can be so easy to go over budget at Christmas because there are so many things you want to get your family and friends. We don’t set a budget per se, but we do try not to spend too much. It’s just the three of us, well four if you count the dog, so even when we go all out, we don’t spend that much.

  15. It’s so important not to put yourself in debt just to show people you love them – people are more likely to appreciate something small and meaningful they want/need than something big and extravagant. I’ve been keeping a spreadsheet this year of everything I’ve bought so I can see exactly what I’m spending and on what. It’s been so useful and it’s stopping me from over buying! Xx

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