Have Yourself a Very Budget Christmas

by annieangel

Christmas is the most expensive holiday of the year, this article provides you with tips on how to budget and still have a very Merry Christmas.

A budget Christmas

how to save money this Christmas

Money is tight for everyone and many people are looking for ways to budget but still have a good Christmas.  Coincidentally many of the tips here are also those that work towards ensuring we all have a greener, eco Christmas.  

10 tips to have a cheaper Christmas

  1. Don't buy a Christmas tree, instead make use of what you have already.  If you don't have an artificial tree decorate a large houseplant.  You can also have a walk in the woods and pick up a fallen branch to use.   Alternatively you can make one from cardboard or scraps you have around the house.  

  2. Use only LED energy saving bulbs and be sure to turn them off when you go to bed.  Just remember that they contain mercury so they have to be disposed of properly: most local authorities have a separate collection point for them.

  3. Be sensible about gifts.  Arrange with friends and family to have a spending limit.  Make as many of your own gifts as you can, handmade things are more popular than ever before and you can learn how to do just about anything on YouTube.   Shop at charity shops, secondhand stores and car boot sales, you can pick up some really good bargains there.  Recycle any presents you get that you don't want or don't like.

  4. Make your own decorations.  Kids love to do this and it creates a new tradition they will carry with them always.  Again, you can find how-tos all over the net.

  5. Make you own cards or send ecards.  Agree with family and friends not to send cards this year or send only to special folk.  

  6. Use recycled wrapping paper from last year or use the gifts you give as wrapping - for example use a scarf to wrap round something else, or put sweets or biscuits into a glass jar or storage tin that they can use again.  Fill a re-useable shopping bag with goodies.  You can find more ideas on my article The Alternative to Gift Wrapping

  7. Plan out your meals - buy locally produced food as much as possible.  Only buy what you are going to use, waste is high at Christmas and there is no need for it.  Cook as much as possible from scratch - make the most of what you have and learn not to waste it.  

  8. Cut down on travel.  Travel only when necessary.  Ditch the car and take public transport where ever you can.  

  9. Give charity gifts - instead of giving gifts to people who already have everything, give a gift to people who have nothing.  There are many charity gifts available from buying a llama for a family in Peru to teaching a community in Africa to dig a latrine.

  10. Buy and use recharable batteries for all those toys.  Remember batteries also have to be disposed of resonsibly.  



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Just_Totes features photography by AnnMackieMiller
Updated: 11/21/2011, annieangel
Thank you! Would you like to post a comment now?

Comments: do you have any other budget ideas/

annieangel on 11/21/2011

siserou - that is a hard one - what I usually do is buy a little gift for them like sweets or cookies. Most of the charities send a card to the recipient. How about asking them to give you a charity gift - I don't see how they can object if it is your choice. Personally I get a real thrill when I receive a card saying someone in Africa is harvesting fruit from trees donated in my name or is using clean water from a water project donated in my name. It makes me enjoy the blessings I have at Christmas all the more.

siserou on 11/21/2011

I personally love the idea of giving charity gifts, but when I broached the topic, I was quickly and bluntly told that it does not qualify as a gift because others received 'real" gifts and the person who receives the charity gift will get nothing. I was promptly told that charity gifts are for deaths and funerals only.
I still believe that is the way to go, and in fact, I would prefer to receive a gift that helped someone suffering in a third world country then another doo-dad, I can't possibly use.

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