Guest Post: Celebrate the Holidays Without Wasting Your Cash

If you are wondering how you are ever going to get through the holidays without spending too much money, you are not alone. It seems like all we do during the holiday season is spend money on stuff. Whether it be gifts, food, or a plane ticket home, there are no shortages of ways to spend tons of money. However, there are ways you can cut back on those expenses.

Create spending limits

One way to spend less money is to have a budget for your gifts this year. Establish a spending limit between yourself and your loved ones so that everyone is on the same page. As long as everyone knows that you are not going to spend more than a certain amount on a gift, they won’t feel compelled to buy anything overly expensive on you either.

Make your own gifts

The real spirit of the holiday is to show thought, so a great gift can be homemade. Give homemade cookies and fudge to people in the office; learn to knit scarves, sew aprons, or put together dolls for the children on your list. It may take more time and some effort to learn how to make things, but there are hundreds of possibilities explained on the Internet and it will only cost you a few dollars to give your friend or loved one a thoughtful gift.

Don’t overspend on the Christmas party

Instead of traveling to many parties, and spending a lot of money on food and wine, why not just have one party that everyone can come to? Have everyone bring a dish and see what everyone can come up with. If you don’t have time, or money, to commit to a big party, a small gathering with friends and nearby family should suffice.

Again, the meaning of the holiday is to be with your close friends and family, so don’t worry about having to go all out. If people really demand refreshments, or you want to get into the holiday spirit, you can bake your own cookies, or buy an inexpensive bottle of wine.

Stay home for the holiday

You might be tempted to go home to mom and dad’s for Christmas, but it might be better to just stay home and enjoy the holiday by yourself. If you have gotten a gift, you can always ship it to wherever it needs to go, and you can phone home, or use Skype, to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. Your family will understand that it might not be worth it to pay for gas, or to purchase a plane ticket, to visit. If you don’t have much time off from work, you might not have a choice anyway.

This holiday season, don’t worry about spending so much of your hard-earned money. Instead, focus on just being with your friends and family and enjoying each other’s company. The memories made are what people will remember, not how much you spend on gifts or food for the holiday party. Don’t stress out. Just have fun and be jolly, and everything will turn out for the best.

Photo credit: Christmas tree by Jim Winstead/flickr

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