5 Easy Ways To Stay Debt Free During The Holidays

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    Debt Free Vacation

    ‘Tis the season for tons of expenses! While the holidays are referred to as the time to spread love and joy, they are also notoriously expensive. While Black Friday sales make you think you’re getting the best deals of the year, your expenses can quickly add up if you’re not careful. Is it possible to spread the Christmas cheer without breaking the bank completely? Follow these tips to avoid debt this holiday season and start the new year with your financial goals.

    Create a vacation budget

    The vacation shouldn’t be stressful – at least not financially – and with proper planning it doesn’t have to be either. To best prepare for the season, keep track of your current expenses and try to curb excess expenses like eating out, expensive coffee, or other non-essential activities. Take a look at your financial situation and consider paying off any existing debt. All of these will help you determine how much you can comfortably spend this holiday season.

    When it comes to creating a realistic budget, it is important that you consider all potential vacation expenses, not just the gifts. Make a list that will add the finishing touches, like wrapping paper, bows, and boxes. If you are planning on hosting a dinner, you need to consider how much it will cost to feed each guest. Don’t be afraid to overestimate something. You can put any extra money you have at the end of the season towards next year’s vacation fund. By planning all expected expenses early on, you can confidently create your budget strategy.

    Start saving early

    It’s never too early to start saving! Once you have an approximate number of how much the holidays are going to cost, the next step is to figure out your savings plan. To cope with the financial stress, you should open your vacation fund as soon as possible. If you set aside just $ 50 a month for a year, you have $ 600 for your budget. Waiting until December to think about the holidays can turn into a hefty credit card bill in the New Year and no one wants to have to pay off the holidays with interest.

    Looking for sales

    Keep an eye out for deals and bargains to help create a debt-free holiday season. The Christmas sales season usually starts in November. By shopping early, you can spread your costs over a longer period of time, which means less of a burden on your budget. To avoid unnecessary spending, it is best to avoid last minute purchases.

    In addition, essentials are usually cheaper after the holidays. This makes it the perfect time to stock up on items like lights, wrapping paper, and Christmas decorations. You will thank yourself for the savings for the next season.

    Shop from home

    One of the easiest ways to get your Christmas shopping started early is to shop online. It’s also the best way to compare prices, read customer reviews, and check out product reviews. Retailers often offer additional discounts for online purchases, which means you can buy cheaper gifts online than if you bought them in a brick and mortar store.

    If you decide to fight the Black Friday crowds, you will have a plan of where to shop and what to buy. Vacation expenses add up easily – especially when everything costs less from the start. To avoid any temptation to instant gratification, leave your credit cards at home and only use cash from the money you have saved. Remember, the key is to avoid unnecessary spending whenever possible.

    Get creative

    Have you ever heard the phrase “less is more”? To save some cash on gift giving, listen to your friends and family and put down any gift ideas they bring up in conversations. Sometimes a smaller, more meaningful gift is more thoughtful than a larger, more expensive one. To further personalize your gifts, you can bake a tin of someone’s favorite baked goods or hand-paint a gift. DIY gifts can be a great way to save over the holidays while also making a gift that feels thoughtful and personal.

    The holidays don’t have to be a budget buster. Follow these tips to kick back, kick back, and have a happy and budget-friendly holiday season.

    The 5 Easy Ways To Stay Debt Free During The Holidays post first appeared on Credit.com.

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