In just three months time, it will be Christmas. Can you believe that? It doesn’t quite seem possible that we are so close to the end of the year, does it?
Now we all know that Christmas comes around every single year but things happen and sometimes we aren’t as prepared or as financially ready as we would like to be – Christmas can cost a lot after all. Here are five ways to get prepared for Christmas early.
Shop The Sales
It is an oldie but a goodie and that is for a reason. Sales always provide us with things we want for a cheaper price. I know of people who actually buy stuff in the Boxing Day sales and January sales for the next Christmas. I don’t mind buying wrapping paper, cards or decorations at this time but I don’t dare buy anything else just in case the person doesn’t like those things when Christmas finally rolls around.
However there are plenty of sales throughout the year so why wouldn’t you utilise them? We tend to buy the bigger presents in early to mid November but sometimes hold off until the Black Friday sales to see if those big ticket items are a little bit cheaper.
Find Out What They Really Want
Kids will always write their letters to Santa but have you ever noticed that they always list those big items they really want and never talk about the little things they want – then it gets to Christmas Eve and they see an advert on the TV and decide that they want that too? Yeah, I’ve been there. I let my kids sit down with a catalogue before they write their letters to Santa – we’ve been looking at the Smyths catalogue recently – and get them to circle everything they want from it. They are aware that not even Mummy and Daddy OR Santa can bring them all but it really does help when you are struggling for those stocking filler items. I now know what pocket money collectibles Jack wants so will be sure to include some in his stocking this year.
Make A Plan And A Budget
A budget is key when it comes to Christmas – so many people don’t plan ahead in time though. Perhaps consider setting aside a certain amount each month, just for Christmas presents. Then another amount specifically to go towards the food and decorations and all that kind of stuff that goes with celebrating Christmas.
It is also important to come up with a plan – how you are going to buy the presents (online or in store), the maximum you want to pay, where you are going to store them until the time comes. You may even want to do what I do and enter competitions for items you know that your family and friends will enjoy. I always enter for things I know they will like – and have had great success with wins in the past. If it gets too close to the day and I haven’t won that item but I still want to get it for them, I’ll still have that money saved and allocated for that item in the budget. However, I’ve not often had to do that as I’ve usually managed to win what I want – usually by entering every competition I see for that item. I recently won a Nintendo Switch for my son and fiancé which they are super chuffed about – and I won it after entering every single competition I’d seen for one! You’ve got to be in it to win it, after all!