It’s October – so you know what that means. It’s time to get ready for the holiday season. The holiday season can be a wonderful time of year, but for many, it can also be overwhelming. The pressure to have the perfect holiday can be quite disastrous, this year especially given the countries economic woes. More people are cutting back on their spending, due to not having the resources to spend on gifts, parties, decorations etc. It’s important to remember that the holidays are about family, friends and togetherness, not about breaking the bank. Here are 10 Holiday Planning Tips to help you have an enjoyable holiday season. Set a spending limit for decorations, gifts and your holiday menu. It’s ok to go over a little, but don’t overspend to the point where you have to use your credit card. If it comes to that point you need to rethink your game plan.
- Don’t join a work gift exchange, just because everyone on your team is. It doesn’t matter if the limit is $10. If you can’t afford to participate, skip it.
- Suggest a secret Santa family gift exchange, if you can’t afford to buy individual gifts for everyone. Call, email or text family members and ask if they would like to participate.
- Simplify the gift giving by using an online secret Santa organizer, to pick names. This way family out of state or the country can participate. We do this every year and the limit is usually $75.
- Skip the overpriced fancy Shmancy wrapping paper. After all, it’s about the gift inside, right? Use old maps, comic pages from the newspaper or save gift bags and boxes (if they’re in good condition) and reuse them from year to year. If you must buy wrapping paper hit up the sales a few days after Christmas. It usually goes on sale for 75%.off. Just save it for next year.
- Order your cards early. You can find cards regardless of which holiday you’re celebrating from Storkie (like the one below). What’s even better is you can do it from the comfort of your home. You can also display the holiday Christmas cards you receive around your home for decoration.
- Shop clearance sales all year round for gifts. However, don’t just buy something because it’s on sale. This doesn’t mean you have to buy an extravagant gift, but don’t waste your money on a gift the person can’t or won’t use. Remember everyone has different taste, so shop for them not you!
- Ask the cashier to wait to ring you up until you’re done placing items on the counter. This is a good idea because you can check prices as the cashier rings up your purchase. During the holiday season, stores can get a bit messy and products are often in the wrong section – double check your receipt before you leave the store. If you were overcharged or double charged you don’t have to worry about returning to the store.
- Don’t buy gifts with a recurring charge (cell phone, internet service). One of the biggest mistakes people make is buying gifts where the person ends up with a monthly bill.
- Simplify your life and decide where you are going to be spending the holidays. If you have family and friends that live a great distance from each other, don’t try to visit everyone in one day. Switch it up and visit no more than 3 homes each holiday unless they live close.
- Pick one holiday and stay home and spend the day with the members of your household. This year we’re keeping it simple, by attending and hosting a manageable number of get-togethers, family dinners and parties. No multi-course elaborate meals on Christmas day for us.
We hope you find these tips helpful! These are some tips I’ve been using to ensure a worry and stress free holiday season. Have fun and enjoy your holiday season with friends and family.
What are some tips and tricks you use to pull off a successful holiday season?
I wrote this blog post while participating in the Storkie holiday blogging program. I received compensation for my participation. All opinions are 100% mine.