Last update: 23/12/2022

As the year draws to a close and a new one begins, perhaps you feel overwhelmed by the celebrations, presents and trips. However, all these great memories can bring about an increase in your expenses. Discover five tips to watch your pennies over the festive season.

Between the street decorations, the magic of deciding potential presents and any last-minute deals, there are many temptations that pushes you to buy more products and services during the holiday season. Not having a plan in place to overcome these temptations means that you are more likely to fall under the spell of financial biases. These biases entail that you subconsciously disregard critical reasoning when it comes to deciding if a present is in your budget, or if it is needed, as you are compelled to buy things without considering the consequences.

How to celebrate over the holidays and still save

In previous years, you may have been tempted to buy more than you had planned. You probably realised after the negative impacts that this impulsive buying had on your personal savings. With the following five tricks, you can enjoy the festive period without getting stuck in the same cycle and feeling the impact on your finances.

  1. Set a budget – determining the maximum amount of money that you can spend is a good way of keeping track of your finances. Organisation is key in this regard. Splitting your expenses into categories (gifts, meals and transport, for example) will give you a clear insight as to how much you are spending on each category. With many digital banking apps, you can track payments by category, so you can see if you are keeping with your plan.

  2. Research and price comparison – checking prices at different places before making a purchase can help you make the most of offers on certain products. This simple exercise will help you find places that sell the product that you are looking for, as well as similar products from competitors, at a cheaper price. You can also do this of different eCommerce stores.

  3. Do your shopping in advance – after comparing prices, it is important to be a smart shopper and not wait until the last minute to buy everything. This way, you can avoid any price hikes on certain seasonal products. Also, products are more expensive when they are more in demand. Another factor to consider is the impact of financial situations like inflation – with costs going up, your shopping list will also be more expensive.

  4. Pay attention to the payment method – when it comes to saving more money the way you pay for your purchases can make a difference. By planning, you will be able to understand if you have the financial means to pay for your shopping, without having to resort to other sources of financing.  What's more, personal loans can increase your debts because of interest.

  5. Make the most of the collaborative economy – options such as car-sharing with other people going to the same place as you means that the expenses will be shared., At the same time you will also cut down on vehicle pollution. You can also use the collaborative economy when shopping – going to markets like flea markets can help you find the products that you are looking for in good condition and at a much better price.

Lastly, as well as keeping these tricks in mind when buying certain products and services, don't forget to implement responsible consumption in your household. Household consumption is typically excessive over the festive period. For example, lights are left on to decorate various rooms or various home appliances are on at the same time when cooking. Not only will this run up your bills but it will also have a negative environmental impact, exacerbating the environmental and energy crises. It is helpful to always have these tricks to hand, as they can be applied all year-round. You can improve your financial health by starting the new year with these resolutions.

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