Prepare for the gift-giving rush without spending too much money.
If you haven’t already done your Christmas shopping this season, this weekend is a good chance to get a lot of it done. Save money and stress when purchasing gifts for your family and friends with these easy and smart holiday shopping tips.
Ways to buy gifts and save money
While the concept of spending while saving at the same time might sound impossible, it all comes down to planning ahead.
- Use cash – The old stand-by, cash is still a great method for smart buying, according to financial advice website Kiplinger. Racking up credit card bills is a fast way to build debt, and using cash can help you keep your budget on track.
- Be careful with plastic – While cash is ideal, credit cards might be unavoidable. If that’s the case, you should only use the ones with low rates. In addition, a family should track all of the purchases, and factor that into one budget.
- Start saving early – The earlier, the better. If you start saving months in advance there will be more money for buying, and December spending won’t feel like such a crunch.
- Get creative – Creativity may help cut costs, and not all gifts need to be bought at a department store. Instead, arts and crafts and sentimental options save money, Kiplinger noted.
Saving money during the holidays might be easier than it sounds, as long as you take into account careful planning and budgeting.
Don’t get caught off-guard
Being a smart shopper means being prepared, according to the National Retail Federation. One way to do that is by spreading out the purchases year round. Even if it is too late to do that for this holiday season, you can always plan for next year.
In addition, the Internet should become a valuable tool for everyone. Web searches offer great deals, and there are tools that allow shoppers to compare prices and figure out which retailer is offering the best deal. That could save you a lot of time and money.
The holidays can be stressful for many servicemembers, but it doesn’t have to be. Omni Financial has options that help make any time of year more relaxing, and solve a variety of money problems.