Although it seems like the holiday season starts earlier and earlier every year, it’s never too late to consider a budgetary plan for your holiday shopping. While Black Friday (and Black Thursday) can net you some incredible deals, many consumers shop throughout December for family and friends.
Whether you’re on a tight budget or you’ve got serious cash to spend, it’s always a good idea to have a financial plan before jumping in and buying the best for the people you love. At Polam FCU, we have a variety of tips regarding how to make the most out of your spending this holiday season – and here are a few of our favorites.
- Make a plan – and stick to it. It can be very easy to impulse shop, whether it’s for yourself or for someone you care about. You might find the right item, whether small or big ticket, and decide in the moment to take the plunge and purchase it. However, if you’re trying to save money (and everyone should be trying to save money), making an impulse buy could possibly have a negative effect on your bank account. If you’re on the fence, it’s better to err on the side of caution and stick to your budget.
- If you’re shopping for lots of people, buy one or two extra gifts. You might not know in advance if your neighborhood or workplace will have a gift exchange, and sometimes, those holiday party invites come at the last minute. Instead of scrambling for a gift for such occasions, perhaps buy a couple of extra items that you can give your host or co-worker? Whether it’s a gift card or a bottle of wine or a trinket, such items can go a long way, and can be re-gifted if need be.
- Before you venture out, check out online deals. Through e-commerce sites like Amazon or Overstock, you can snag incredible deals on items you’d find in brick and mortar stores for a fraction of their retail price. Polam FCU’s rewards program also allows you to use your points to shop from a number of online retailers, including travel and dining options.
- Don’t procrastinate! The closer you get to Christmas Day, the busier the malls and stores get, and the more you’ll have to pay for shipping to ensure your purchases arrive on time. To prevent a stressful season, plan ahead, make a shopping list, and get everything you need before it’s too la te.