With the holiday season around the corner, it is already time to start preparing your shopping list. While the 2020 / 2021 year has certainly not met anyone’s expectations, there are traditions we all would want to hold onto and make it special for our loved ones – even if the budget has changed considerably.

No matter what you decide to cut back on, make sure you are saving that extra money for the holidays. Your future self will be thanking you for having festive savings in place. Since the holidays might look a little different this year – with more time at home and smaller gatherings – it may be time to put a new plan in place to avoid an unnecessary big credit balance in the new year.

 

Below are steps to help you prepare financially for the holidays

1) Make a list

Start with a list of everyone you usually buy gifts for, then begin to think about other costs associated with the festive season; such as will you be hosting a special dinner – even if it is a small occasion it would be wise to consider the costs early.

2) Build a budget and start saving

Once you have completed making a list of your upcoming expenses, look at your current budget so you can make a plan for how to pay for everything. Now would be a good time to start stashing extra cash in preparation for any additional spending.  Look at the many types of expenses to avoid surprises – these would include;

– Accommodation

– Meals

– Travel expenses

3) Cut back on expenses now

An easy way to save money for the festive season is by cutting back now. You can start by printing off your last three months’ banking statements, total up how much you are spending each month and when it comes to your recurring expenses, ask yourself if you can negotiate a better rate or shop around for a better price.

 

Mistakes to avoid when saving for the festive season

– Do not steal money from your festive savings; while this is technically your money, it is best to not dip into the savings unless it is 100% necessary.

– Do not forget to save for decorations and experiences; chances are you would want to buy items like decorations.

– Do not go shopping without a plan in place; be sure not to go over budget when it comes to gifts.