With inflation rising to record levels, many of us are looking to do Christmas on a budget for 2022. And with the festivities just weeks away, it’s definitely time to start planning. Whether you’re looking for budgeting tips to help you save money, apps for finding festive deals, or even the best cheap but thoughtful gifts for Christmas, then we’ve got you covered.
Check out these tried and tested tips to help you beat inflation, get you through the season and do Christmas 2022 on a budget.
Christmas 2022 budget tips, deals and ideas
1. Plan Christmas gifts on a budget
You can make your Christmas shopping easier by thinking about what you want to buy in terms of gifts, groceries, wrapping paper and so on. Try not to get way more than you need. Also think about how much you’re going to spend and when and where you want to do your Christmas shopping, whether that’s a few days in-store, an evening online or a bit of both.
By making a plan to buy Christmas items on a budget (and sticking to it) it’ll be much easier to get things done – and far less stressful!
2. Manage your finances
Christmas can be an expensive time. But there are plenty of ways to turn it into a financial success rather than a financial shock. Start by drawing up a budget for your Christmas 2022 spending, taking into account all the extras like Christmas parties and socialising.
If you use a credit card, make sure you pay off the balance in full when the bill arrives. And try not to dig into your savings or overdraft too much. Cash in on money-saving apps as much as you can, and make the most of things like prepaid cards which are great if you want to avoid racking up huge bills, as you can only spend what you have.
3. Don’t leave it too late
If you want your Christmas shopping to be stress free, don’t leave it too late. You’ve still got plenty of time, but you might want to get started soon if you haven’t already.
An ideal time to shop for Christmas gifts is during the Black Friday sales. You will find amazing deals and discounts on all kinds of items. Many retailers are still offering Black Friday deals, so you’ll still find some great bargains.
There are some big downsides to leaving your Christmas shopping too late. You’ll face busier high streets and supermarkets, or higher delivery charges for online shopping. Or you might be tempted to panic buy and spend more than you can afford.
4. Make the most of shopping apps
No list of Christmas shopping tips would be complete without mentioning the best money-saving shopping apps. With a bit of forward planning, your mobile device can spare you a lot of stress this Christmas.
You’ll find plenty of shopping apps to browse deals and get personalized offers. Some work best while you’re out shopping near your favorite stores. Many apps come complete with extra features like shopping lists to help you stay organized, price matching to save you money, and perks like cashback, rewards and even free groceries.
Checkout Vouchercloud for the best deals and couponing. Or CheckoutSmart for money off your groceries or even free products. Mint is a great app for saving money for Christmas weekly, while Honey app and Shopmium can help you get freebies and save up to £50 a week off your online or in-store shopping.
To make the most of shopping apps this Christmas, all you need to do is download the app to your smartphone, and opt-in to share your location to get the best deals nearby. Many of these apps have geofencing capabilities meaning they offer you the best location-based services and experiences.
5. Find cheap but thoughtful Christmas gifts
If you’re doing Christmas on a budget for 2022, then cheap but thoughtful Christmas gifts are the way to go. The Black Friday sales will have many a cheap but thoughtful Christmas gift. But given that it’s Cyber Monday today, you better get out there to secure the best deals.
You can pick up some gorgeous cheap but thoughtful gifts on Etsy. Check out some great surprisingly thoughtful gifts for £5 or less, such as a scented candle, a photo frame, a jar of sweet treats (you can up-cycle the jar) or even some handmade baked goodies.
Other cheap but thoughful Christmas gifts are things like a personalised notebook, comic baubles, a reusable coffee cup, or some cool but affordable bits from Ikea.
6. Do a Secret Santa
For Christmas shopping tips to blow away the stress, why not do a Secret Santa? If you have a lot of people to buy for then a Secret Santa is a great option instead of everyone buying everyone a gift.
It’s easy. Simply set a budget that you will all spend, put everyone’s names in a hat and each pick one out, then everyone gets their chosen person a thoughtful, surprise gift. You might find it easier to organize your Secret Santa using a website like Draw Names which makes it easy to invite people, make wish lists and set everything up via email or WhatsApp.
7. Shop on the high street
With Christmas spent in lockdown over the past few years, many shoppers are eager to get out and about to do their Christmas shopping this year. Heading out on the high street has many benefits. You can shop in local stores who are likely to appreciate your custom, especially those who were hit hard by the pandemic. It’s also fun to check out the merchandise and take in the Christmas atmosphere.
What’s more, by going out shopping you can really maximize the benefits of those shopping and cashback apps. Use them to discover in-store deals, scan barcodes and even get cashback on what you spend. Simply keep your receipt, upload it to your cashback app and you will receive cash back into your bank or Paypal account.
11. Make your own decorations
You can save a packet on Christmas decorations by making your own. Check out these top DIY decorations from Mumsnet.
8. Start saving for Christmas weekly
Making Christmas 2022 a breeze by saving money for Christmas weekly. Not only will you get access to great cashback and money-saving deals, but you’ll save money straight into your bank or Paypal account. Browse flyers and brochures to help you save. Or get money off your phone bill and out it in the pot with Airtime rewards.
With apps like Starling and Mint, saving money each week couldn’t be easier, with clever tools that help you put money aside and pay it into a saving space for all of your saving goals.
9. Find Christmas gift ideas under £5
Yes, you heard that right. Find Christmas gifts under £5. It’s super easy to do, too! Pretty much every store comes up with an array of options if you Google ‘Christmas gifts under £5. You can get all manner of cool gifts from Amazon, such as funny drinks coasters, games cards personalised stickers, socks and much more.
Find Me A Gift has some great options for under £5, from dust mop slippers, meme mugs, retro puzzles, desktop games and much more.
10. Make the most of free delivery & BOPIS
While shopping on the high street has many advantages, you might still want to do at least some of your Christmas shopping online. You can buy pretty much anything from the comfort of your sofa, plus you’ll find plenty of online discounts which can save you money.
By shopping online, you can also make the most of free delivery and but online pick-up in-store (BOPIS), so you won’t be trailing around with heavy bags. Many retailers offer BOPIS and curbside pickup for goods purchased via their website or app. Just remember that slots get booked up fast, so get organized as soon as possible to make you get one.
Using free delivery, BOPIS and curbside pickup are both stress-free ways to streamline your Christmas shopping and avoid the long queues.
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- Best apps for local deals and discounts
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