The holiday season is filled with excitement, but that can turn into financial panic by the time the bills start rolling in. According to a recent survey from Decluttr, the average person will spend $600 on holiday gifts this year. And unfortunately, 66-million people, which is about one in four of us, will go into debt this holiday season. But it is possible to make it through the next few weeks without going broke and these tips can help.
- Turn off notifications for deals - Those emails we all get all the time from our favorite stores are a constant reminder to buy things we don’t really want or need, so take a break from them this holiday season. Unsubscribe from newsletters, silence notifications on your shopping apps and don’t buy things just because they’re deeply discounted.
- Make a list and stick to it - It’s much easier to overspend when you don’t know exactly what you need. So as simple as it sounds, write down all the gifts you want to buy and follow your list, trying to find the best deals on those items … and those items only.
- Leverage deals to replenish your essentials - Aside from the presents you need to get, holiday sales can help you snag staples for your own home with huge savings. Figure out what you need - a blender, bedding, or whatever - then check Black Friday and Cyber Monday discounts to get them for less.
- Set boundaries with friends and family - Not everyone is in the same financial position and buying presents shouldn’t be a burden, so have talk with your loved ones about gift expectations. Maybe you agree to set limit on spending, or skip store-bought presents this year, but you’ve got to bring up the conversation first.
- Remember: Browsing is shopping - Avoid falling into the “but it was such a good deal!” trap by not browsing for sales. If you’re searching for something specific, go on with the price checking, otherwise you’re setting yourself up to get sucked into those sparkly holiday deals.
- Use points and perks to your advantage - Now’s the time to use up leftover gift card balances, as well as any points and perks you’ve earned that could help you save on your holiday shopping this year.