Dec 2, 2022 12:13:34 PM

How to Reduce Your Holiday Season Spending

Topics: Savings, Financial Health, Christmas Debt 0

Months of high inflation in Australia have forced many households across the country to spend more without actually getting more. This festive season, many families will be wondering how to cut back and avoid overspending. If your family is one of these, don’t despair, it is still possible to enjoy an unforgettable Christmas without the worry of massive credit card bills in January. Here’s how to do it.


1. Shop deliberately

While it’s not clear how much of all holiday expenditure is spent on impulse purchases, panic-buying or FOMO-induced spending each year, you can bet it’s significant! Unplanned holiday spending is difficult to track and harder to manage.

If you haven’t already done so, it’s not too late to create a holiday-specific budget that outlines all of your holiday spending. It’s the best way to determine what you can realistically afford to spend and it will save you time and money when you head to the shops.

2. Shop early

With inflation squeezing budgets more than ever before, many retailers are already heavily discounting items to entice customers to spend. Rather than wait for traditional big sales days – like Black Friday or Boxing Day – keep an eye out for deals, discounts and sales at other times of the month.

Better yet, avoid the crowds and shop online. Online deals sometimes beat in-store prices, and you’ll save on gas and parking. Remember to keep yourself safe from online fraud and other cyber-scams that are common at this time of year.

3. Share costs

Festive season entertaining with family and friends can be a lot of fun. But holiday meals, entertaining and parties also chew up a big part of the holiday budget. To help keep costs down, instead of just one person hosting this year, consider a potluck where everyone contributes.

Divvy up the costs of food and drink or have your guests bring a plate of their signature dish or festive favourite meal. Not only will it help share the cost of entertaining, it helps reduce the workload too.

3. Cut back on gift giving

The biggest strain on the budget often comes from having to buy gifts for extended family and friends. One way around this is to do a Secret Santa exchange, where you put names in a hat and each person draws out one name to buy a gift for. For big families or groups of friends, this can be a real saving.

Another approach is to agree on a spending limit for gifts, so everyone buys a gift for the same value. That way there’s no need to worry about comparing gifts or feeling bad for not spending enough.

5. Track spending

Most importantly is to track spending as you go, to ensure you’re sticking to your budget and not overspending. Keep a close eye on bank statements if you’re using a debit or credit card, or track your spending in a spreadsheet. Not tracking how much you spend could make it easier to go over budget.

Take charge of your holiday spending this festive season. Avoid a budget blow-out and the inevitable credit card bills come January. For more financial advice tailored to your unique situation and circumstances, get in touch with the team at Mortgage Express to talk to a broker in your region.

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