Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.
advice

How to Stick To Your Holiday Budget

How to Stick To Your Holiday Budget

Editorial Disclosure: Editorial content, including card comparisons and card reviews are not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. Creditcards.org may be compensated through Affiliate Programs for referrals.

• Updated: July 13, 2018



Can you believe this year is almost over? The Holidays are right around the corner, I hope your bank account is prepared! Last year the average person spent a little over $800 during the holiday season. Since your paycheck doesn't increase proportionately to your holiday funds, it's best to set a budget. Budget is not a fun word, in fact, they are often the exact opposite of fun. But you know what is worse than setting a budget? Accruing a bunch of debt. We've put together a few tips to help you set your budget and stick to it. This will ensure you can enjoy the holidays a little more stress-free. 
Related: 3 Leading Cash Back Credit Cards



1. Create the actual budget



Most people know roughly how much money they plan on spending, but very few put it on paper. Writing out your budget is a great way to make sure you don’t miss any small expenses because we all know small items can add up quick! Also, make multiple copies of your budget, keep one at work, one in your purse and one on the fridge. This will help you to keep your budget top of mind. And when your co-workers want to take an impromptu coffee break, you’ll know if you can afford that latte. Here are a few of our favorite free budget printables to help keep you on track.



2. Categorize your expenses 



When creating your budget break it out into categories for gifts, décor, parties, food, travel, etc. By breaking your budget out into categories it will help you prioritize what you need to spend money on and what you can skip. For example, if your budget is already tight, maybe you don’t need that new dress for the holiday party, maybe your best friend has one you can borrow, hey it’s new to you!



3. Set a spending limit for each category



Setting a limit for each category is just as important as setting the actual budget itself. Making sure you know exactly what you’re willing to spend on gifts vs holiday food will further help you to stay on budget. If you’re a parent, you know your kids wish list bulges the closer Christmas gets. By setting a gift to spend limit, this will keep you from going out Christmas Eve and grabbing the newest list item.
Keep Reading: Frugal Shopping Myths Debunked



4. Keep your gift list organized 



If the idea of carrying around a budget annoys you, download an app like The Christmas List. Apps like these will allow you to keep track of everyone you’ve already bought a gift for. This is also helpful in not accidentally buying your dad and brother the same gift!



5. Use credit cards for all of your purchases 



This might sound bias since our business centers around them credit cards, but they are a great tool when used wisely. There are quite a few great cash back cards that will earn you rewards on every purchase, meaning you’ll get a nice little gift after the holidays. Another reason credit cards are helpful is that you can see all your purchases on one statement and balance your budget in one place. Lastly, credit issuers like Citi® offer price protection, so if that TV you bought drops in price, your credit card will protect you.



6. Set shopping deadlines



Giving yourself a deadline for purchasing gifts will also help you to stick to your budget. If you make sure you have all of your gifts by Dec 9th, you’ll be less tempted to run out when you hear about sales. It will also ensure you avoid high shipping costs on those last minute gifts.



7. Don’t be afraid to decline events 



We’re not saying be totally antisocial, but holiday events can add up. Between the clothing, the food, the wine, the babysitters… you can find yourself blowing your budget by saying yes to every party. It’s about balance, your friends will understand. 
Keep Reading: How To Plan A Great New Year's Party On A Budget



Creditcards.org is a credit card comparison site. We have been providing our customers with the best credit card offers available since 2010. If you are looking for a new credit card, visit us here

We think you'll also enjoy
Wedding photo
Financial Discussions You Need To Have Before Marriage
Senior couple traveling
5 Credit Card Tips for International Travel
Barista in coffee shop
5 U.S. Companies Who Help Pay for College Tuition

SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTER

We want to hear from you and encourage a lively discussion among our users. Please help our site stay clean and safe by following our posting guidelines, and avoid disclosing any personal information such as phone numbers or bank account information.

The comments posted below are not provided, reviewed or approved by the card issuers or advertisers. Additionally the card issuer does not assume responsibility to ensure that all posts and/or questions are answered.