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In Part 1 of our Christmas tips series, we took at look at budgeting, taking advantage of sales, and more. In Part 2, we’ll share additional ways you can save on Christmas, and still have an amazing holiday without overspending!

1). Giving to Charity

Another alternative to giving presents is to give charity gifts in your loved ones’ name. This is a wonderful way to keep from spending on a present that may never be used. Instead, put the money to better use by helping others.

There are a ton of charities that need help including:

  • Unicef
  • Save the Children
  • Oxfam
  • Refuge
  • Cancer research
  • And more

People in need will be extremely appreciative for the gift of charity this year.

2). Create Christmas Memories

While some childhood memories may go back to a couple of special Christmas gifts you received, more precious memories may revolve around time spent with loved ones. We’re talking Christmas memories.

With that in mind, why not look for ways to create these wonderful memories with your kids? Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Drive around and look Christmas lights
  • Watch holiday movies together & have some amazing snacks as you snuggle together
  • Read ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas together on Christmas Eve
  • Bake and decorate Christmas cookies together (Yum!)
  • Play games together: board games, cards, and more (maybe get Grandma to try playing the kids’ favourite video game—that will be a hoot for Grandma and everyone!)
  • Search for free events near you

3). Cut Expenses on Christmas Dinner

The turkey is one of the largest expenses for Christmas dinner. Many people choose to splurge on birds that are quite expensive, such as from a large brand-name company. However, that’s not necessary.

Instead, opt for a turkey that’s on sale. You really won’t know the difference—it will taste just as good! Plus, you’ll feel better knowing you saved money on the bird.

You can apply the same practice to other dishes for Christmas dinner, too. Instead of name brands, choose store brands. The quality is about the same, and it’s always possible to “doctor” the store brand to improve the dish’s quality and flavour.

In addition, buy ingredients and products for Christmas dinner when they’re on sale. You can buy that turkey in September for a far lower price, then put it in the freezer (well-wrapped, of course) for Christmas! Cans last on the shelf for months (if not years) and packaged foods also have a long shelf-life. So, try to buy these items when they’re on sale. Doing this will save you tons on Christmas dinner, and dinner will be as scrumptious as ever, without overspending.

4). Be Careful Buying Gift Cards

Giving gift cards is great; however, there are some things you need to keep in mind:

  • Retailers may go out of business: if this happens, the stores may no longer accept the gift cards. And it’s almost impossible to get your money back.
  • Expiration dates: some gift cards also come with expiration dates, which means they can’t be used after that date. The card needs to be used before that date, or the funds will be lost.
  • Admin fees: some retailers start reducing the balance on the card if it’s not used within a certain amount of time. Check the gift card terms before making the purchase and avoid any cards that have admin fees.

5). Use Google Shopping

Google Shopping can help you find the best prices & retailers. This is a great tool to help find the cheapest places to buy Christmas presents. It’s easy and fast to use! All you have to do is type in the name of the product on your list.

For instance, type in “Barbie doll.” Then hit enter, and Google Shopping comes up with a list of stores and prices on all types of dolls. Use the filters to find the specific item you want and in the desired price range.

One of the great things about Google Shopping is that they search the web for a wide range of shops including the larger names such as Amazon and Tesco, amongst others.

6). Get a 0% Card if You Must Borrow

It’s best not to borrow money for Christmas presents; however, if you have no choice, then it’s best to find the best 0% credit card deal and use that for Christmas spending.

With a 0% card, you can buy presents and pay no interest on those purchases for a specific time period. This varies by card but is usually several months. 0% cards are cheaper than getting a loan; however, they must be used in the right way, otherwise you could end up deep in debt.

If you must go this route, then commit to paying your Christmas purchases during the 0% time period. You’ll avoid some hefty interest charges and can avoid applying for an expensive loan.

7).  Use Cash Back Sites

Cashback sites have been around for years, and it’s a great way to save money on Christmas. You just create a free account, and then click through them to make a purchase. The site is paid for referring traffic (customers) and then they give you some of this money to you, in return. Think of it as a “thank you” for using their cashback site.

Many of these sites are connected with big name retailers, so it’s easy to find quality gifts at the stores you regularly shop. Just choose an item from your Christmas list, type the product name into the cashback site’s search box to find a deal. When you find a deal you like, then click on the link, which will take you directly to the retailer’s site. Once there, you can make the purchase as normal.

There you have it! Christmas if a fun, beautiful time of the year, but it can easily break your finances. We hope our Christmas spending guides help you to find creative ways to save money on Christmas, without sacrificing the wonder of the holiday!