One of the things that makes the holidays so stressful is the sheer expense of gifts. In fact, many people charge their cards to the max during the holidays—but you don’t have to break the bank this holiday season.
- Make your gifts—knit, bake, make a gourmet tea or spice blend, or any art or craft.
- Shop in secondhand stores, especially in large cities where you can find tags-still-on gifts.
- Head to Marshalls or T.J. Maxx where you can easily find fabulous gifts for $10 to $20 each.
- Take advantage of holiday sales. Black Friday may have past but you still have Cyber Monday.
- Sign up for Prime (your first month is free) and ship presents directly from Amazon. This eliminates your costly shipping fees, and you can cancel Prime at any time.
- Shop year-round to capitalize on sales, and spread out the cost of the holidays.
- Hit the after-holiday sales where items are up to 70% off, and stock up on generic gifts for next year—holiday books, holiday toys, ornaments, holiday linens, holiday kitchenware, holiday clothing and accessories, and more.
- Draw names for everyone in the family, or for everyone but kids under a certain age.
- Buy a family gift that everyone in the family can enjoy, such as board games or gift baskets.
- Don’t exchange with friends and family who understand that you are, or are also cash-strapped.
Last but not least, setting a budget will ensure that you don’t break the bank this holiday season.