6 Tips for Saving This Holiday Season

purse (similar), card wallet, sunglasses

The holidays can be exciting, festive and fun, but they most certainly can also be expensive.  From gifts to travel to entertaining, here are my 6 tips for saving money this holiday season.  (Full disclosure, I am in no way a financial expert, just sharing what works for me!)

1. Make a budget//Just because you have a Christmas gift-giving list a mile long, doesn’t mean you have to go into debt!  This also doesn’t mean you have to be cheap with your gift-giving, you just have to be smart!  Having a budget allows you to break-down what you are spending on who/what and go from there.

2. Plan ahead//There is a reason that the sales start so early and often! Is it daunting to think about buying gifts the day after Thanksgiving? Of course!  But that same person you could only spend $25 on can get a gorgeous $50 gift half off if you plan ahead and start early!

3.  Don’t pay for shipping!!//I cannot stress this enough! I cannot think of a bigger waste of money than shipping.  Keep an eye out for promo codes that include free shipping, I promise, it will come.  Also, check-out sites that offer free shipping like Nordstrom and Target (thru 12/23).  It’s worth it!  Also, J.Crew and other spots offer free in-store pick-up.

4.  Look into free gift wrapping//So you’ve got 20 packages delivered…now what?  Wrapping can be daunting and so expensive.  I am a sucker for beautiful paper, ribbons, bows and cards but it adds up so fast!  Not to mention, it’s crazy time-consuming. I love the gorgeous and FREE wrapping that Mark and Graham offers.  Finding a promo code for them in your e-mail that’s 20% OFF + free shipping AND their always free wrapping? Jackpot.

5.  Amazon Prime//I know this tip might not be for everyone, but buying even two or three people’s worth of gifts in one fell swoop on Amazon and getting free two-day shipping feels like the solution to so many holiday headaches.  There are so few items you can’t find on Amazon that the Prime membership pays for itself in the free shipping alone, look into the free trial around Christmas, if anything.

6.  Make a donation//In lieu of a gift, make a donation to someone’s charity of choice in their name.  You save time searching for the perfect gift and save money on shipping/wrapping/etc. AND most importantly, you will both feel so good for making a difference.  That’s what the holidays are all about after all, right?

Do you have any money saving tips this holiday season? I’d love to hear!

Jaimie is an East Coast Lifestyle Blogger.

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