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How to Budget for Holiday Shopping

ICSC Consumer Study Statistic

As we quickly approach November, the holiday season is right around the corner. While this time of year is a fun and joyful one, it can be a financially stressful time for many. 

According to a post-holiday survey conducted by ICSC, consumers spent an average of $1,011 during the 2021 holiday season. That number is expected to grow by 4.2% year over year in 2022.

Whether you struggle with holiday spending or you’re just looking for ways to more efficiently manage your money, follow these 10 tips to help budget for holiday shopping to ensure a fun, stress-free holiday season. 

10 Tips for Staying on Budget This Holiday Season

  1. Give yourself a set amount to spend.

    In order to avoid overspending during the holiday season, figure out exactly how much you can afford and give yourself a strict spending limit to ensure you stay within your budget.

  2. Write down everyone you plan to give gifts to.

    Creating a list of everyone you plan to give gifts to and setting individual spending amounts for each person helps you keep your purchases on pace and stay on track of your holiday budgeting goals. 

  3. Save up year-round.

    When squeezed into a single month or 2, holiday spending can be a shock to the wallet. Setting aside money throughout the year specifically for holiday hopping helps avoid the overwhelming feat of spending everything at once.

  4. Be proactive.

    One of the surest ways to overspend during the holiday season is to be in a time crunch and feel like you have to buy what is convenient, no matter the price. Eliminate this overspending pattern and stress by being proactive and doing your shopping ahead of time.

  5. Use credit cards that provide cashback or rewards.

    If you’re going to be spending money, either way, you may as well take advantage of the cashback and rewards many credit cards offer. 

  6. Confirm you have the best price.

    If you find a gift, you really like but feel it is over your budget, shop around to see if you can find a better price elsewhere. Oftentimes stores will price match if you find a better deal somewhere else.

  7. Stay on top of your spending.

    In order to keep within your budget, it is important to regularly review your account statements, pay your bills, and monitor your accounts using online banking

  8. Consider homemade gifts.

    Some of the most cherished and memorable gifts are ones that are homemade by the gift giver. Making your own gifts is not only more meaningful, but it’s also a lot easier on the wallet.

  9. Make sure your budget covers all holiday expenses.

    While gifts are a major part of holiday expenses, make sure you’re also factoring in other holiday spending needs into your budget, such as traveling, hosting, decor, etc. 

  10. Create special savings account specifically for holiday shopping.

    With money tucked away in advance in a special savings account, your money will be out of sight, out of mind, and be ready for you when it’s time for you to start shopping. 

Give yourself a set amount to Spend

Start Saving

If you aren’t paying close attention to your spending habits, holiday shopping can easily get out of control. You’re not alone in feeling like the holiday season is a stressful time, especially financially.

When things feel hectic, remember these simple tips, keep calm and stick to your holiday budget. Interested in setting up a special saving account for your holiday shopping needs? Check out Voyage’s Holiday Club account.