Shopping on Holidays

Shopping on Holidays – Here’s How to Avoid Overspending

The holiday season in winter often becomes several weeks’ long extravaganza. Before going on a shopping spree, here are the tips to avoid overspending.

By considering the ever-expanding sales on Cyber Monday and Black Friday, people never stop planning their holiday shopping. It’s not uncommon to go in debt of some amount during the holiday season. But there are certain tips to help you avoid overspending due to shopping.

Why people overspend on holiday shopping?

You won’t believe it but more than half of holiday shoppers make their budget. But there are certain reasons why 76% of those shoppers still overspend. According to a survey conducted last year -

  • 57% of shoppers bought gifts which were not planned
  • 71% spent more than expected
  • 41% treated themselves and gone through “one for me, one for you” approach.

But millennials deserve a round of applause. Unlike baby boomers and Gen Xers, millennials are known to create a budget and never overspend. Actually, they prefer to spend less on holidays. 

Avoid Overspending on Holiday Shopping

There are some tips to help you save the shopping hangovers for New Year’s Day and avoid overspending on holidays –

Plan a Budget (and Stick to It)

It is obvious that people make budgets and most of them blow it off while shopping. But it is not an excuse to avoid making a shopping budget. It takes just an hour or so to make a budget. If you stick to it, you could save hundreds of dollars of gifts.

Avoid plastic money

Keeping your cash handy can help you stay accountable. By keeping some cash on hand, you can see how much amount of money is leaving your wallet. This way, the feeling of panic can keep you from overspending.

According to a survey conducted by TD Bank in 2016, over 61% of shoppers used credit cards on holidays for products above $20. The rest of the 55% of people used debit cards. For the sake of some reward points, it is not worth to spend more than you need.

Should you buy it for yourself?

If your recipients are good enough, you might get some goodies in return. So, you may not want to buy for yourself. If you are like me, you can’t control yourself if you ever find something is available on sale. Figure out whether you should buy a particular gift if you want to decide if something is worth your spending. 

Do you really need stockings?

Do you really need something that you can keep on stockings? Except for a new toothbrush, you buy every once in a while. You may not want to load stockings with unwanted trinkets. Of course, it’s a tradition but you should stick to the basics.

Don’t add debt without proper planning

If you are taking a personal loan or using a credit card for shopping, you need to plan ahead to pay it back. Interest rates multiply very easily on what you spend on the holiday season and payback for several years. So, you should budget your cash and debt both. Accrue as much debt as you can afford to pay off in a specific time period. If there is 0% APR, be sure to pay off within the given time period before interest starts.

Shop Smarter

Black Friday is gone. But there are still some stores offering better deals for the holiday season. After creating a list of shopping vouchers, you should do your own research on where to find the best deals. There are certain websites and apps where you can avail of additional discounts and coupons.

Don’t be too generous

During the holiday season, kindness is in the air. But you don’t have to go with the flow and overspend on gifts for everyone in your list of relatives and acquaintances. Don’t follow others when spending on gifts. Instead, you can make some homemade gifts for close relatives and friends or involve a group of family or friends in a gift swap instead of exchanging gifts as they did before.

Shop Gift Cards

You may also want to buy some discounted gift cards to save more on your shopping. You can even shop e-gift cards on different sites or through the shopping site of your credit card and use them to shop in stores. This way, you can save more whenever you go shopping.

If you combine a coupon for 40% off with a gift card for 15% off, you can save really very much. You can also give away a gift card to your loved ones and the recipient will be more than happy to shop for gifts they like.

Plan ahead before buying

Especially on big shopping days like Cyber Monday and Black Friday, shoppers prefer to check out everything on their list. Those days, you can choose from different good deals like apparel, electronics, and beauty products. If you wait for late December, you can get even better deals.

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