It's already started where I live. The stores are absolutely full of Christmas advertising and I can assure you, they are not your friend when it comes to a thrifty lifestyle this year!
Tip #1. Stay out of stores! Oh this is a huge one for staying thrifty around the holidays! The stores are headed for one thing and one thing only... getting you to spend money! I totally get that, honestly. I mean, we all have to earn a living, right? Well, yes we do, but frankly even though I sell Norwex I actually don't want my friends and customers going into debt for my products. In fact, that is one reason I love what I sell so much. It actually saves people money! But most stores do not have this mentality. That's why they offer credit cards💳!
Tip #2. Shop online, carefully. Shopping online can be one the best options out there for not overspending. On the flipside, it can also be easier to just type in your card info and you might lose track of how much you're actually spending :( So, be careful! Only type in the items you need to buy and you won't have the issue of looking at all those amazing things you just really need to buy! (not). You can also use programs like ebates that give you money back for the things you buy online. As a general rule I get about $15/every 2-3 months. Not a huge amount but it adds up over a year! Don't forget, many stores online offer free shipping around the holidays so that's a great way to save.
Tip #3. Make handmade gifts. So, you want to be really thrifty? Make your gifts yourself. Some of my most treasured gifts are handmade! They don't have to be extravagant, either. Try your hand at a doll quilt for the little girls in your life or a wall hanging for a friend or family member. Look on Pinterest for inspiration and just put your heart and time into it. It will be special and appreciated!
Tip #4. Don't borrow for the holidays! Oh, please, please, please follow this one! It is so senseless to borrow for gifts that a month later the recipients will be tired of or will just clutter up your house. I know of people who actually only get last Christmas paid off by this Christmas, just in time to borrow again! Break this cycle this year and make a hard and fast rule. If you can't pay for it, don't buy it! You'll thank me in January :)
Tip #5. Make a little extra cash! So what if there are some gifts you really do want to buy this year but there is absolutely no wiggle room in the budget. Now's the perfect time to make a little extra! In the past, I have cleaned houses, made and sold handcrafts, worked a small business from home (like Lilla Rose & Norwex). It may not make you rich but $500-$1000 extra is a huge blessing, especially this time of year. Get creative, it you really want it, I'm betting you can make it happen!
Now, here are a few extras that are usually free! Want to make thrifty memories with the family?
Go on a Christmas light drive.
Go caroling in your neighborhood.
Make a small gift such as cookies and take to a lonely friend or neighbor.
Make a big dinner where you provide the main course & invite friends to come & each bring a side.
Watch a holiday movie with your family.
Go into the woods and pick out a tree to decorate at home.
Make homemade decorations to give to friends.
I hope this inspires you that having a thrifty holiday season IS possible! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, Christmas & New Year!
disclaimer: I do use affiliate links of products I love and use!