If you think that celebrating holidays always make a hole in your already tight budget, you are not alone. It happens to most of us. To reduce the overwhelm, start planning your holidays now and save money for the big time. Learn how to save money for holidays at the beginning of the year.

How to save money for holidays if you are on tight budget

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Here are some ways you can save money.

Keep a separate bank account for the holiday savings. This money can be used for travel and other expenses at the end of the year holidays. Start early so that you will have enough time to plan and save.

  • Saving goal: Make a saving goal. This should be according to your budget for the holiday’s season.
  • Open a separate bank account: Keep your money in different bank account so that you are not tempted to spend this money. Also, keep the bank card attached to this account hidden somewhere to curb the temptation to spend money on buying usual stuff.

How to save money for holidays

1. Make a budget

Make a budget for your holidays and stick with it. It also depends on what you want to do during those days. Dinners, parties and travel. All these require a lot of money. Plan in advance and start saving now. Believe me, your holidays will be more affordable and enjoyable.

I know what you are thinking that the holiday season is many months away but it makes sense to start saving now. This is march and if you will start saving now, you will be able to save a lot of money.

2. Cut back on extras

If you love spending, I am sure you will be in the habit of spending money on extra things that you don’t need. Cut back on those. If you like to buy dresses every now and then and never wear them, stop and save that money into your holiday saving account.

Instead of buying lunch every day, try to cook a few times a week. If you can save at least 10 dollars a week, you will be able to save a few hundred dollars until the holiday season.

3. Shop around sales

Always shop around sales and if you find something which you can gift your loved ones during Christmas, buy. But remember, keep it under your budget.

Not every sale is equal. Sometimes stores just put the stickers of sale but don’t change the prices.

4. Do some spring cleaning

Do you hate spring cleaning, I don’t like it too. But believe me, you will get so many things stacked in cupboards and drawers. You can use these items or you can sell the unwanted stuff. Both ways you will benefit from it.

5. Sell kids toys

We all know that kids get bored with their toys and they need different toys at different ages. Instead of piling them in your house, sell them at your local Facebook market place. And save that money towards your holiday’s account.

6. Buy meaningful gifts

It is possible to get into the trap of buying most beautiful gifts. Instead, opt for meaningful gifts. Those gifts which will be useful for a longer time will be better instead of the one which gives happiness for a few minutes.

7. Stop spending time in front of the TV

If you have a habit of watching TV for a few hours daily, cut back and use that time to start doing something to earn money. For example, you can start doing surveys online. Of course, you will not become rich but earning 100-200 dollars a month can add up and help you grow your holiday’s account.

Here are a few survey sites you can start using now.

SURVEY JUNKIE: Survey junkie is one of the best sites to make money as it provides a lot of good-paying surveys. Some people say that they get around $50 surveys. Sign up with Survey Junkie here

VINDALE SEARCH: This is a New York-based company and pays anywhere between $1-5 for surveys. Get your bonus just for signing up. Sign up with Vindale research here.

Celebrations, travel, gifting will become very easy. It will not put a burden on your already tight budget. Last time when I travelled overseas, I spent only that money which I saved for my travel. The feeling was awesome.

8. Cancel unused subscriptions

Do you keep subscriptions which you never use? Cancel them and you can save a lot. If you don’t get time to watch TV, what is the use of keeping cable connection, cancel it. And start saving that money in a different account kept particularly for holiday savings.

Same is with magazine subscriptions. Cancel them. There are so many magazines available online for free. Read them for free.

Cancel gym subscription if you don’t use it frequently. What is the point in keeping subscriptions if you are not using it?

9. Shop online and save by getting cashback

Shop online to save money and time. While shopping online, keep your temptations under control. Make a list of the items you want to shop online. Online shopping can save you money and time. Keep a few things in mind.

  • Shop through cashback sites like Rakuten ( earlier Ebates)
  • Keep the items in the shopping cart for two days, it is highly that you will get an email for free shipping (if it is not already available) or some type of discount.
  • Shop strictly for those items you need. Online shopping can blow your budget.
  • Compare different websites, and buy from the cheapest ones.

10. Make your gifts at home

If possible, make your gifts at home. There is no better way than gifting home-cooked gifts. Cookies, jellies, candies can be prepared at home and pack them in a clear mason jar and decorate it.

11. Cut back on alcohol and smoking

If you have a habit of drinking and smoking, this is the time to cut back on this. These items are so expensive and you will spend a good amount of money on these vices. Cut back slowly. And the amount of that money into your savings.

12. Skip your lattes

We all feel like few dollars here and there will not matter much. But they add up in the long run. For example, if you are spending 4 dollars a day on coffee for 10 days a month. It comes out to be around 40 dollars a month and 480 dollars a year.

Even if you can save half of that money, you have accomplished a lot. This is March, and if you will start from now, saving $20 on your coffee each month will save around $180 til December.

13. Lower your bills

You cannot believe how much utilities can save you. Write down how much you spend on utilities each month. Then make some changes the way you use water, gas and energy. Try to limit the use.

Also,

  • Talk to your utility provider for lowering the bills and getting discounts
  • Change utility providers if others are giving lower rates

Water: 

  • Reduce the frequency of laundry
  • Take less time to shower ( If you take 10 minutes for a shower, reduce it to 7 minutes ) Always use a timer. You will be surprised to know how much you saved.
  • Always use a dishwasher when it is full. If you have a few dishes, wash them with your hands
  • Make sure no tap is leaking

Gas

  • If your house is gas heated, keep thermostat lower
  • Bulk cook the items you can freeze

You can read about saving on gas here

Electricity

  • Switch off whenever not using
  • Keeping your thermostat under control

Here I have put some points you can use to reduce your electricity bills
Compare the bills you get from your new provider with the old ones, save the difference.

I am sure you will be able to save a good amount of money.

14. Cut your junk

Everything which doesn’t add value in your life is junk. Whether it is food or clutter lying around your house. If you love fast food and love to eat out, consider breaking that habit. If you cannot eliminate this habit, try to limit the use of junk food. It will help you maintain good physical as well as financial health.

If you find some stuff lying around your house which you think is not adding any value to your life but could benefit somebody else, sell it. Or donate it somewhere. Most of the time we have our wardrobe full of clothes which we never use. Donate anything you don’t use at your home.

How to save money for holidays by starting at the beginning of the year

These ideas will need some determination and a bit of change in your lifestyle. Even if you are tight on money now, you will be able to save for holidays at the end of the year. Also, these are my favourite tips on how to save money for holidays on a tight budget.

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Gursimrat