Christmas is one time when it is really difficult to keep your finances under control. And for lots of us apart from feeling rushed off our feet there is the thorny problem of trying to buy good Christmas presents that cost next to nothing.
Try to set a budget and stick to it. Reduce the number of presents you buy for people or children. Try to step back from feeling that the size of your present is reflective on how much you care, particularly when it comes to children, who are masters at parting us with our money.
If you are feeling guilty that Father Christmas is going to be a bit of a disappointment, then develop a story that explains why this is happening. (For example Father Christmas is giving presents to poor children).
Here are some ideas for presents and stocking fillers which cost next to nothing.
Instead of rushing out and buying boxes of chocolates why not make your own sweets. Fudge is easy, vanilla slice absolutely delicious and peppermint creams are surprisingly simple to make. The kids can also get involved too as peppermints creams and coconut slice require no cooking.
Instead of a physical present why not give a couples hours of your time. (Or even better request someone give you their time).
- This could be for baby sitting.
- Washing the car
- Housework or gardening
- A manicure or pedicure
Always ask for free samples when you buy cosmetics, these will make great stocking fillers.
Give away things you longer use or need as presents.
Take cuttings from plants in your garden.
Get tickets for your favourite BBC show. Just make sure you check on age limits if you are buying tickets for children.
Don’t buy so many presents – lets face it Christmas is for the kids.
Set up Secret Santa Scheme – and now there is a website which has automated the whole process – so it really is Secret Santa https://www.drawnames.co.uk/
Each person buys a gift for one other person, chosen by ballot, spending to an agreed limit.
Alternatively, make opening cheap treats more fun by putting them, wrapped, into a festively decorated dustbin filled with shredded newspaper and turning present-giving into a Lucky Dip.
Share the Cost of Christmas Dinner
Share the cost of Christmas by gathering as many members of the family together as you can. Each person can provide one element – the turkey, booze, puddings etc.