5 Holiday Budgeting Tips for an Affordable Christmas

It’s never too early to start budgeting for the holidays. Expenses can add up quickly – especially when you head into the season without a game plan. Check out these 5 tips to help with holiday budgeting:

Holiday - A multi-generational family exchanging gifts at Christmas in front of a Christmas tree.

Holiday Budgeting Tip #1:

Just like Santa, it pays to have a detailed list of all expected expenses and to check it twice before and during the holidays – don’t wait, now’s the time to get started!

Your expense list should include everything from gifts to travel to stamps for greetings cards to even charitable donations. Think about:

  • Who are you buying gifts for? And how much do you want to spend per person?
  • What holiday feasts are you responsible for? And what do you plan on serving?
  • Other miscellaneous costs like dry cleaning, Christmas lights (and the ensuing electric bill), ski rentals, etc. It all adds up faster than St. Nick can shimmy down the chimney.

Holiday - Family of three people stays in front of scenic landscape. These are skiers, they dressed in winter sport jackets and have skies attached

Holiday Budgeting Tip #2:

Use a legal pad, spread sheet or online financial management tool like Trends to set spending limits, create savings goals and track holiday expenses.

Holiday Budgeting Tip #3:

Start tucking money away for the holidays by opening a Special Savings Account and setting up weekly automatic transfers from another account. And while you’re at it, toss spare change into a jar and exchange it at a Branch Office for crisp currency before heading to the mall – you’ll be pleasantly surprised how quickly loose change adds up.

Holiday - Friends Christmas Shopping.

Holiday Budgeting Tip #4:

Shop smart and start early to take advantage of sales, special offers and bonus days happening now to help keep expenses down. As you purchase gifts, mark them off on your list and locate a safe place to store them, away from curious eyes.

Cookies to bake, turkeys to roast and appetizers to whip up – cha-ching! No worries. Stick to your budget and save a bundle on groceries by purchasing baking supplies, relishes, and fruits and vegetables at Aldi, discount and warehouse stores.

Holiday - Multi-ethnic, multi-generation family enjoying Thanksgiving dinner together around the dining table at grandmother's home. Latin descent, African descent, mixed race, and Caucasian family members. Turkey and other food on table.

Holiday Budgeting Tip #5:

It’s never too early to start thinking about next year. Shop holiday clearance sales to stock up on seasonal gifts, cards, wrapping paper and entertainment ware for next year’s festivities – they’ll be here sooner than you think.

Ready to Fa-La-La?

Are you ready to hit the malls and save money on your holiday shopping? If so, save even more when you get cash back for using a DuPage Credit Union Visa® Platinum Rewards Credit Card. Or if you prefer, redeem points for gift cards from popular merchants (perfect for gifts), travel rewards, and more. Take advantage of our lowest interest rate ever on purchases and balance transfers for 12 months when you open a DuPage Credit Union Visa Platinum Rewards or Advantage Credit Card.

Do you have tips to help cut holiday expenses? If so, please share below:



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