How to save money during the holidays – Your frugal holiday guide that will save you tons!
The holidays are a time for merriment, food, and family. The beauty is when your holiday priority is spending time with your family, merriment, and food just naturally fall into the equation.
Unfortunately, there is some degree of pressure related to the holidays. Many families feel as if they must have the most lively décor, expensive gifts, and a feast fit for royalty. And as experience may have taught you, these things don’t come cheap!
While many people spend a fortune to create a festive holiday season, you’re different. After reading this eBook, you’ll know how to get the best deals on holiday dining, décor, and gifting.
Keep your money where it belongs – in your pocket! Plus, you can use somewhat unconventional tactics to score your holiday loot.
There are many ways you can spend your holidays on a budget and save money without going broke.
Here is a guide to help you save money during the holiday season and be frugal while still enjoying your holidays freely.
Frugal Gift Ideas
There’s no need to break the bank when it comes to holiday gifts ideas. Sure, your nephew may want an Xbox. Or your sister may want the latest makeup brush sets from MAC. But, does that mean you have to purchase these exact items for them? No, absolutely not.
You give what you can. And, if you’re resourceful, frugal, and willing to think outside of the box, you’ll be able to give high-quality gifts for a very small amount of money.
The best part is that your friends and family are sure to appreciate your efforts because you did more than swipe a card.
Offer a DIY Monthly Membership
A gift that keeps giving is a monthly club membership. In these clubs, the gift recipient receives a basket of goodies delivered to their door each month. The items can range from fresh bouquets of flowers, ripe fruit, baked goods, or even a simple care package.
As enticing as they are, though, the challenge with these membership gifts is that they can cost as much as $400 per month!
The good news is that you can design and produce these monthly membership gifts yourself! It’s very inexpensive and simple to do. Plus, you can hand-select the items in your monthly gift without having to pay an additional fee.
Do What You Love
Base your monthly gift around the hobbies which you most enjoy. Below are a few membership gift ideas based on popular hobbies.
- Knitting/Sewing – If you love to knit and sew, you can offer a new mom a monthly gift basket filled with handmade baby items.
Each month, including a knitted cap, booties, a set of cute patterned burp cloths, and a monogrammed diaper cover. Not only will you save the mom money on baby supplies, but you’ll forever be a memory of her angel’s first year.
- Bake away – Baking is a talent that just about everyone can appreciate. Treat your friends to a holiday gift that keeps on giving by sending them a basket filled with muffins, homemade chocolate lollipops, brownies, and a dozen of their favorite cookies.
If you’re giving multiple monthly membership gifts to your friends, make your life easier by creating a menu at the beginning of each month. Base the menu around the ingredients you already have at home to save money.
Be sure to take note of any food allergies. Many people are allergic to peanuts, blueberries, seafood, or have an intolerance for dairy.
- Recipe jars – If you’re short on time or have an uncomfortably small cooking space, save yourself the agony of having to slave away in a cramped kitchen for hours. Instead, give recipe jars filled with all the dry ingredients necessary to concoct their creations.
Jazz up the recipe jars by adding a small layer of fabric to the inside of the jar and then closing the lid over it. Then, wrap a small piece of ribbon over the lid and attach a handwritten recipe card.
If this sounds like an appealing option to you, be sure to use frugal shopping techniques, such as couponing and thrift shopping, in order to score great deals.
The convenience of ready-made gifts often comes with a considerable price tag. But of course, there are strategies to minimize your out-of-pocket expense for dream-worthy gifts.
If possible, start saving for holiday gifts at the very beginning of the year. If you can afford to save $20 per week, by the 1st of December, you’ll have $960 saved up to purchase gifts.
If you’re already living on a tight budget, don’t feel compelled to completely alter your lifestyle in order to sock away money for holiday gifts. Do what you can now, and find gifts that suit your price range later.
If you have a spare $5, put it towards your holiday gift fund rather than that latte. By just making a few smart choices throughout the year, the savings can be a considerable amount of money by December.
It’s an unwritten rule – the holidays require lots of food. When you’re hosting a Holiday dinner in your home, it may feel as if the entire food bill falls on your wallet.
However, it’s quite common to ask friends to bring dishes that contribute to the total amount of food served.
This is how you can avoid overspending during holidays.
There’s no shame in having a potluck holiday. Ask your guests to contribute a small dish. You can contribute the main dish, such as Turkey, Meat, or Chicken. Your guests can bring the side dishes and desserts.
Create a list of the dishes you’d like to serve, and casually pass the list around to your guests through email, call them by phone, or have an in-person chat.
If you’re flexible, just ask your friends to cook up one of their best concoctions, whether it’s potato salad, lasagna, or cookies.
If you have friends that have no idea how to cook, consider asking them to purchase drinks or dessert. An apple pie at the grocery store can cost as little as a few dollars.
As you can see, if everyone pitches in just a bit, it’s possible to have a wonderful, merry and frugal holiday dinner without going broke.
Score a Free Turkey
Just about every grocery store in the nation has a rewards program where you can get a free Thanksgiving Turkey. Of course, there are guidelines and stipulations that you must adhere to before getting a free bird.
Below, we’ve noted the most common customer rewards programs that reward you with a free Thanksgiving Turkey!
1. Points Program
If you accrue between 200 and 300 points, you qualify for a free turkey. Each point is equivalent to $1. Therefore, you must purchase $200 to $300 worth of merchandise in order to be eligible to receive a free turkey.
Most points programs give you a two to six-week time window in order to attain the necessary points. Of course, you can minimize your out-of-pocket expense by combining coupons that double or triple with select sale purchases.
2. Select Purchases
A less common, but vastly growing trend is offering a free turkey with purchases from select brands. You may see an advertisement, such as “Purchase $40 in Swanson, P&G, Coca Cola, and Campbell products in order to receive a free, 10-lb turkey.”
Offers may vary by store, but this description seems to be fairly accurate.
It may seem like a good deal. But if you’re purchasing $40 worth of products your family doesn’t want or need, it’s essentially flushing money down the toilet. It would be more rewarding to simply buy a turkey for $25 or so, and pocket the savings.
Holiday décor is a staple of the season, as it fills your home with merriment and holiday joy.
It may be tempting to stroll into your favorite retailer and stock up on holiday décor. However, in doing so, you’re wasting valuable money on pieces that you can only use for two months out of the year.
There are ways to score seasonal décor for just a few dollars. And below, we’ll cover ways to save money on décor that have the power to ultimately change the way you shop for holiday decorating.
- Use nature’s resources. Scour your backyard for fallen pinecones and perfectly golden fallen leaves. Use the pinecones to create a wreath and scatter the golden leaves across your tabletop in order to achieve a lofty, holiday vibe.
The frame leaves in a shadowbox or even a $1 photo frame from a discount store. If you’re feeling especially crafty, paint the frames in the shades that most scream “It’s the most wonderful time of the year!”
Consider filling a hurricane vase with pinecones and placing the vases around your home in order to inspire holiday cheer.
- Swap holiday décor with a friend. Surely you have holiday décor stashed away from previous years. Instead of buying new décor, exchange your holiday stash with your friends for this Christmas year.
The total cost of bringing merriment to your home in this manner is a big fat zero! And the best part is that you’ll never have to purchase new holiday décor again. Just switch stashes with a new friend each season!
- Take a DIY approach. The pleasant truth is that most of the overpriced pieces of décor you see in stores can be replicated quite simply at home for pennies on the dollar.
Start scouring blogs (and their archives) for tutorials regarding holiday décor.
- Curb appeal. Sometimes you want your lawn to speak wonders of your holiday spirit rather than decking the halls indoors. If this is the case, opt for very obvious and eye-catching trademarks of the holiday you’re representing.
Line the walkway to your front door with pumpkins. Make a cardboard arch and paint orange stripes and scatter leaves throughout the arch by pasting them to the cardboard with glue.
- Goodwill Hunting. Never underestimate the power of thrift shopping. Secondhand stores, such as Goodwill and the Salvation Army have many gems for the holidays.
Most items can be bought at thrift stores for less than $3. So, if you come across five pieces that you absolutely love, the grand total will still remain under $15.
When it comes to decluttering your home apart from home decor, here’s a quick guide for you all to declutter your home in a weekend!
Final words on how you can save money during the holidays
Clearly, if you’re willing and able to think outside of the box for all aspects of the holiday, you can save a bundle of cash. Always remember, the holidays are about family, first.
No one cares if your turkey weighs 15-lbs or 25-lbs or if you give them a year’s supply of baked goods made by yours truly or perfume from the mall. Those that matter don’t mind. And those that mind doesn’t matter.
May the frugality in your home be abundant this season!
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How to save money during the holidays – Your frugal holiday guide that will save you tons!
I am the Wife, Mommy, & Blogger behind All Moms Blog learning to run my own home and raise up kids while chasing my dreams. I work to support, inspire, and encourage moms in the journey of motherhood to make their lives easier without losing your sanity.