Christmas is just around the corner and many people are feeling their tight wallets thinking about all of the gifts to be purchased. But really there is no need to worry. Shopping at the mall and spending too much money is not the only option available. Christmas has always been a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus and spend quality time with family and friends.
And it is a fact that holiday shopping are fun, and gifts are a way to express your love, care and friendship to your near and dear ones. In the Christmas, people spend lavishly and incur the expenses that are unnecessary for them. They don’t think of the future and spend unwisely. Consequently, this results in the budget problems at the end of the month. Indians too, spend unwisely following the western cultures and do not emphasise on the savings part when it comes to any festival. But, in India, as we know a majority of the families don’t hold a lavish lifestyle. So, here are some tips to advise them how they can save on this Christmas, so the holiday season doesn’t strain your budget, or lose its sparkle!
10 WAYS TO SAVE:
Christmas is a time of celebration and joy. It’s a time of exchanging the presents and celebrating it wholeheartedly rather than being a miser. But for your budget not to go beyond the limit here are 10 ways you can plan it:
- SET A BUDGET AND STICK TO IT:
What most of the Indians do is they procrastinate a lot. They have this habit of letting go the money when it comes to friends and family. So, the first step is to decide and plan a budget and stick to it. For example, if you are planning to celebrate Christmas and you have decided a budget then better stick to it. For example, if you are planning to celebrate this Christmas with a budget of let’s say INR 10,000 or maybe 20,000, 30,000. Then you must keep in mind that you must not cross it.
- IMPULSIVE BUYING:
That’s a habit many of the Indians that at the time of Christmas shopping they go to shopping with an agenda to buy ‘X’ number of things. But, at the time of shopping they buy the things which they don’t need and buy unnecessary things. This results into the budget to go off limits. This also results in many of the things that the family then realises that the thing was not to be purchased as it is of no use. It is just the excitement of the moment that blindfolds the mind and tends us to buy.
- NO CHRISTMAS PRESENTS:
Indians especially when it comes to Christmas do a lot of exchange on the Christmas day as it falls under the tradition of the exchange of gifts and presents. But, afterwards when the month is about to end and they have a glimpse on the monthly budget then the fights begin to occur in homes over the needs and compromises have to be made. You can choose another alternative by giving those cards and some smaller things in present. This wouldn’t affect your budget also too much and you can plan out your route ahead by the end of the month.
- BOOK TICKETS IN ADVANCE:
Yes! In India, many people prefer to travel during the holidays. Holidays are a way to take a break from the mundane life and rest your mind. But, when planning for a holiday they don’t look at the budget and buy at the end moment. This results into the ticket being charged at a 20-30% higher price. You can save this amount of money by planning to book your tickets 4-5 months earlier if you are sure to travel in Christmas. This can be beneficiary for you as you save that 20-30% amount on your tickets
- BECOME A CHURL!
Yes! You can save a lot by utilising your funds properly and buying from the cheaper places. As Benjamin Franklin has quoted, “A penny saved is a penny earned.” In India, you can become a miser in the following ways: For instance, you can get fancy perfumes for cheap prices and that results in your saving. You can also find the cheapest place to buy gifts if you are so inclined towards giving gifts. You can get the designer brand of clothes at discounts coz’ at this time of the month everyone is coming up with the fancy rate of discounts. You can also provide with the homemade gifts. Not to forget, you should always focus on the celebration rather than the gifts. Lastly, you can cut down the bill of the drinks at your home by making the home made wine and etc.
- BUY FROM SECOND HAND STORES:
Oh yes! The second-hand stores are like the next dimension to your saving. You can get ample amount of things at the enviable prices making your purchase an interesting one. You can get books, shoes, coats and other items too. In India, there is also this tradition of passing on the items of the ancestors to successors on such days. For example, what your grandfather gave you; you can pass that on to your child making it valuable for him/her. Thus, these things fall into your budget and you don’t have to hassle for a gift to give to your children on such days. Thus, it adds benefit for you.
- EXCESS FOOD IS NOT GOOD:
In India, on such big days such as Christmas people follow a particular pattern of bringing more food as they believe in a certain part of the food should be kept for unknown visitors. If someone suddenly shows up at your door, so you can’t let them go empty stomach. So, the families buy more amount of food. But, when it is left unutilized the food is thrown out and becomes a waste. To avoid such wastage of food and to utilise it properly, the food must not be bought in excess. Avoid all those little snacks and sweets while buying food. Also, don’t throw the food but you can donate that part to the people who are less fortunate and cannot purchase this food. Thus, you can save.
- NEGLECTING THE DISCOUNTS:
People here sometimes believe that the thing that is kept is discount is the dead stock and it is there for clearance. But, the sellers often keep such discounts to attract the customers. So, the proper advantage of such discounts should be made and they should not be neglected. You can always take advantage of the online discounts coming up at this time of the year. For example, Amazon offers heavy discounts on the products at this time of the year. So, don’t miss to grab it. You can also look for the big discounts available at other online outlet stores. Lastly, try to stalk all the combo offers that you get at this time of the season making it the most for you.
- USE CREDIT CARDS:
Credit cards play a very crucial point when it comes to saving. Many of the online e-commerce companies offer an additional discount when you make the payment through your credit/debit cards resulting into further additional savings. Also, these companies during this time of year come up with the additional offers which can be very much pleasing for the people like us. Also, credit cards help you to check your budget so that you don’t miss on anything. Lastly, the banks provide you with the offer of cash back credit cards which is a boon.
- CANCEL E-MAIL SUBSCRIPTIONS:
E-mail subscriptions are a way to divert you to excessive purchase. Often the sellers of the online business send you e-mails regarding the large discount offers on the products at this time of the season. This leads to overbuying and letting you not control your budget. So, the products which you are buying for once and have no intention to buy for a longer period of time cancel the e-mail subscriptions and e-mails from such dealers which lead to excess buying behaviour. So, this is the tenth and the last way that you can save on this Christmas from the different types of schemes that trap you to buy.
So, here is a list of the top 10 ways to save your Christmas from turning out to be an over budget scenario and causing trouble for you. Apart from these, there are many little tips and tricks that you can use for saving. A little example is such that kids often don’t look at the product but the size of the packing of the product. So, you can buy a cheaper gift and wrap it in a big box to make the kid feel like he/she has got the best one. Lastly, you can switch your supermarket. If you buy from a supermarket that charges you heavily whereas the other one does not so shift and you can save on this Christmas.
By saving on such occasions and spending wisely your celebration doesn’t turn out to be a budget- buster. Lastly, I would like to add it’s completely on the will to purchase and not on the products so if you stick to an aim and want to save on this Christmas you definitely will save on this one!