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Start Planning for Christmas Savings Now

September 21, 2011 |

Santa Girl with giftsChristmas is still a few months off, but now is the time to start planning for the upcoming holiday. There can be a lot of details to plan, especially if you are going out of town or going to visit relatives. The following tips can be helpful for financing your Christmas and ensuring the holiday season is one full of joy instead of debt.

Before anything else, take an inventory of what you have left over from last year. Often we pick up a few small gifts and either forget about them or do not have a person to give them to. These gifts can be used the following year. They are usually items like alcohol, ornaments, or other small stocking fillers. While thinking about what you have left over from last year, write out a list of what you need to buy for this year. If you shop from a list you are less likely to make impulse buys adding to your holiday costs.

It is also advisable to use personal finance software to keep track of your Christmas budget. This way, you can refer to what presents have already been purchased and what you still need to buy. It also gives you a good record for other expenses, such as travel. And traveling can be extremely expensive, so book your tickets in advance and keep an eye out for travel coupons.

Another trick is to purchase gifts with free shipping & wrapping and have them sent directly to your relative’s home. This way you do not need to wrap them yourself and by having presents shipped ahead of time, you do not need to pack them in your luggage, drag them through the airport, or pay for extra baggage fees.

If you have any tips on keeping down the holiday expenses, please share your tips in the comments below!

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