£753 – that’s the average cost of Christmas for every British household, according to insurer GoCompare. That £753 is spent on presents, food, drink, parties, decorations, and more. And, for most of us, it’s worth it because Christmas is a true highlight of the year as we get to relax with and reconnect with our friends and family.
There’s no doubt though that Christmas does put financial pressure on many of us so the Best Short Term Loans team have put together our top 9 tips for saving money for Christmas.
9 ways to bring down the cost of Christmas
1. Go coupon and voucher crazy
In the past, the real bargains were to be had in the January sales. Right up until Boxing Day, retailers would charge as much as they possibly could for their goods because the competition was not as intense and, as a nation, we had become used to paying over the odds in October, November, and right up until Christmas Eve. That’s all changed now.
In addition to general pre-Christmas price discounts, you should also look for any vouchers your favourite stores and sites are giving away to encourage you to spend money with them. There are also some great deals to be had on sites like Groupon too.
2. Check online to make sure you’re getting the cheapest prices
There’s a reason why internet shopping has been catching up with high street retail shopping for years – price. Companies which sell over the internet make much smaller margins on their products than their real-world counterparts.
As well as the all-mighty Amazon, there are tens of thousands of internet sellers after your business. You might want to think about using a service like Google Shopping to compare prices in seconds.
Don’t forget as well that there are some real bargains on internet auction sites and local listings apps like Shpock.
3. Bulk buy your food and your booze
Christmas is a once-a-year celebration for the whole family so it’s always tempting to get the very best food and drink for you and your loved ones to enjoy. Butby making a plan for your purchasing well in advance, you can save up to £100 and maybe more by:
• go for a spread of meats – instead of a big turkey, why not choose a smaller one and a couple of other cheaper meats for your Christmas Day spread>
• think practically about how much you and your relatives can actually eat – that’ll help you avoid overspending through accidental overbuying
• don’t go for the most expensive beers, wines, and spirits unless they’re on special offer – try to find cheaper alternatives. If you’re having people to stay over for Christmas, it’s not rude to ask people to bring their own drinks.
4. Cashback sites and credit cards
Some credit cards offer up to 5% back on the cost of your purchase – as long as you pay it all off on your next statement thereby not incurring any interest, you’ve just saved money.
Cashback sites pay you every time you buy from selected retailers. MoneySavingExpert has a great article about it here – it’s well worth checking out.
5. There’s always Black Friday
“Black Friday” is a huge nationwide sales event which takes place normally on the last Friday in November. In recent years, it’s been joined by “Cyber Monday”, held on the first Monday after Black Friday. Whereas Black Friday is both online and retail, Cyber Monday is generally just held by online sellers only.
Be careful – there are some amazing bargains out there but always do your due diligence and check to see whether that’s the best price on the internet for a product on sale. If you see a product you like on Amazon, you can check to see every price it’s previously been offered at on services like Keepa.
6. Don’t always go for the big brands and big labels
Someone in your family might love an Apple iPhone XS Max or Samsung Galaxy Note 9 for Christmas but with prices peaking over £1,000 for these smartphones, that person is maybe hoping for a bit too much this year from Santa.
With everything you buy – electrical, clothing, toys – is there a cheaper alternative? Could you find slightly older models or versions of stock that attract a big discount? Never stop looking for hidden gems that everyone else might have forgotten to look for.
7. Loyalty cards can go a long way
If you’ve been racking up the points on your supermarket loyalty card all year, you could save quite a bit, particularly on your food shopping, by saving them up all up to use at Christmas time. Some supermarkets allow you to convert your points into voucher cards which can be used at other stores or on online platforms like Apple, Google, and Amazon.
8. Don’t worry about keeping up appearances
If you’re hosting the wider family this Christmas, focus on enjoying the day and the time you spend with them – don’t worry about trying to impress them with the latest electrical item in your home or the trendiest perfume or clothing.
They’re here to see you and yours – all you need to do is bring yourself.
9. Plan, plan, plan
Make a list of who you’re buying for, what your budget is, and take advantage of stocking up well in advance. Stick to your plan and resist the urge to make any impulse purchases for yourself or for a loved one.
Did you know that buying train tickets (if you’re staying over at someone else’s for Christmas) are a lot cheaper if you buy 8 weeks or more before the date of travel?
Do you need a reliable loan broker?
Best Short Term Loans is a loan broker, not a direct lender. What we do is match up the right borrowers with the right lenders so that you get the cheapest deal we can find and your lenders get someone they’re looking forward to having as a customer.
Please note that the payday loans and short-term loans we offer should only be used for emergency spending only – like your car breaking down or for funeral expenses. Payday loans and short-term loans are expensive forms of credit and they should not be used to buy presents for Christmas.
If an emergency crops up over Christmas that’s not related to present buying and you need money quickly, let our team find the right offer for you. You can borrow between £50 and £2,500 over 1 month to 12 months.
To start your application, please click here.