Christmas is probably the most expensive time of year. Everybody wants to have a good time, buy gifts for friends, family and eat, drink and generally be merry!
However, with all the fun and frivolities can come an enormous amount of stress and worry. There can be a huge temptation to spend on credit cards or use store cards and catalogues and worry about the expense at a later date. I’ll admit, we have been guilty of this in the past. The trouble with this is that although you feel as though you’re doing well at the time, it can take you the whole of the following year to pay it all off (if not longer), and if you ever dared to tot up how much you’ve paid in interest you’d probably find that you’ve spent at least double the amount you thought.
These days, now I’m a little more money-savvy, I start saving for Christmas from the first week in January. There are various ways you could go about doing this. I opened an instant access savings account with Nationwide. I already had a current account with them and was able to open additional savings accounts easily via their app. I’ve got a couple now for various things. You can rename these accounts so I aptly called this one “Christmas”.
At the beginning of each week I put £10 into the “Christmas” savings account. I also put in any extra cash we have left at the end of each week. It’s amazing how quickly this adds up. If you prefer, you can do £1 a day and stash the actual cash in a jar rather than a savings account. You could also think about how much you’d like to spend on each person, how much you’ll need for food etc and work out what you’ll need to put away each week. Whatever works for you. Bear in mind that you’ll want to start dipping into your pot before December 25th so maybe calculate your weekly savings amount from 1st January until 30th November.
So Christmas is planned and paid for in advance, without any schemes or savings plans that could go bust and lose you all your money.
Another fantastic method which takes the sting away is the 1p challenge – http://mymoneycottage.com/1p-challenge-christmas-2017/
Budgeting is a vital part of saving money and budgeting for Christmas is the ONLY way to be sure you don’t get yourself in a mess and stressed out.
Happy Christmas folks!