Friday, December 4, 2009

Guide to Holiday Gift Giving: Part I

Holiday Gift Giving Tips for the Recession Conscious

1) Stick with a budget. It is not worth having to pay off your debt from the holidays for the next six months.

2) Only buy presents for the kids in your extended family.

3) Play Secret Santa (choose names and only buy for one family member).

4) Only do an ornament exchange (we do this with my husband's family along with the Secret Santa).

5) Give to charity instead.

6) Buy gift wrap after the holidays for the next year, save gift bags to reuse, or use a gift as a gift bag. Last year I bought my sister a backpack and filled it with school supplies and put it in a cellophane gift basket bag (that I had recycled) with a big bow on it instead of wrapping everything individually.

7) Use coupons and shop sales or shop online (to save gas). Use Upromise or Ebates when shopping online retailers. Upromise will give you a percentage back when purchasing from participating online retailers and the money can go into your child's 529 college account. Ebates will give you a percentage back (up to 25%) in the form of a quarterly check. Both of these programs are free.

8) If your relatives live far away and you are shopping online, have the gift sent directly to them.

9) Give the gift of time. Many organizations are always in need of volunteers.

10) Start a savings plan at the beginning of the new year, even if it is only a few bucks a week that you can spare. Some banks offer Christmas Club accounts. This way you don't get swept away with holiday stress over how to pay for "the merriest time of the year".

11) I know this is taboo but regifting is always an option (but you didn't hear it from me).

12) I found a good deal on one item this year and bought several for various people on my Christmas list. It's okay to buy the same thing for several people.

13) If you do have a long list of people to buy for, keep a list throughout the year of things these people mention wanting. As the holidays, approach keep an eye out for a good deal on those particular items.


Mommy Is Green said...

Hi! What a helpful list. I do some of the same things and they work for me as well. Thanks for following my blog. I've been following yours through Google Friend Connect and I'm now following you on Twitter. It's nice to meet you!-Victoria from MBC.

Vic said...

These are wonderful ideas. I am so not the type to go all out. It depletes the whole meaning of Christmas. I am now following you too:) Hope you have a great day! ♥

Angela said...

I like the idea of an ornament exchange. I'm going to try and press the idea with my in-laws. Wish me luck. :)

J. L. W. said...

Thanks for the great comments!
@Angela-The ornament exchange is nice because the ornaments we exchange often have special meaning and I write down who gave us the ornaments so we can reminisce each Christmas.

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